Constitution: Article 3 Section 3

Article 3.

Section. 3.

Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.

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This Section addresses Treason, its definition and punishment. 

Paragraph 1 interestingly requires the two witness obligation defined by the Old Testament Law for a person guilty of a capital crime.

Let’s examine a few key phrases for clarity.

Punishment of Treason – this was the specific sentence given for the act of Treason which would give the guilty party the title of “Traitor.”  This has traditionally been death.

Attainder & Corruption of Blood – In English criminal law, attainder or attinctura is the metaphorical ‘stain’ or ‘corruption of blood’ which arises from being condemned for a serious capital crime (felony or treason). It entails losing not only one’s property and hereditary titles, but typically also the right to pass them on to one’s heirs. Both men and women condemned of capital crimes could be attainted.

Notice again that a biblical principle is upheld.  In this case Ezekiel 18:20, “The person who sins will die. The son will not bear the punishment for the father’s iniquity, nor will the father bear the punishment for the son’s iniquity; the righteousness of the righteous will be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked will be upon himself.”

Until next time, this is Joel with Dunetos K-9 helping sharpen your world…one dog at a time.

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