As Thomas Jefferson explained, “a free people claims their rights as derived from the laws of nature, and not as a gift from their chief magistrate.” This understanding is deeply rooted in the American experience. We understand that "all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator from unalienable rights . . . ."
This understanding rejects the idea that we depend upon the government for our rights. Yet, this belief seems to be too often forgotten today. Many act as if everything we desire, everything we need, must come with the approval of the government. This subverts the American principle - in America the government serves the people, not the other way around.
As we move forward with new policies, we need to keep in the forefront that the people are sovereign, and do not require the government to bless their liberties. Indeed, our liberties are blessings - from nature and the Creator.