A “person” is a legal entity that has similar rights to that of people, but are in fact not a “physical person”.
Corporations have some of the same rights as people. This is known as corporate personhood. It is the idea that a corporation has its own rights. Corporate personhood has existed much longer than many people realize.
Corporate personhood is not just for large companies. As long as a business is incorporated, it can benefit from corporate personhood. Organizations that benefit from corporate personhood can include: Large businessesSmall businessesChurchesFor-profit organizations Because it bought land, the Catholic Church is one of the earliest examples of corporate personhood.
While these corporations do not have exactly the same rights as a natural person, they do have certain rights that people have. Rights like Freedom of Speech for example is one of them. Those in favor of corporate personhood believe that this is a way for corporations to be protected from the government, which makes sense.
If corporations didn’t have some sort of protected rights, the government could easily strong-arm them through legislation or regulation to do their bidding. However, critics of corporate personhood claim that companies have more rights than natural people due to their funding.
Corporations utilize this right to buy political favors. This is why all major companies have lobbying groups which are essentially law brokers who find politicians to partner up with them to pass laws. These politicians don’t simply engage with the law, they get benefits from the companies as a result.
Which is why critics of corporate personhood claim that corporations have more rights than natural people. After all, how is your private lobbying group doing in the White House? Oh yea that’s right. No real person has a lobbying group advocating for laws to be changed!
While some of you may be confused to where I’m going with all of this, rest assured that it will all make sense in a minute.
Now that we’ve established that “We the People” and “We the Persons” are two different groups, it’s time to put it all together.