The U.S. Constitution specifies that "The powers not delegated
to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the
people." So, the federal government has limited powers -- if they are not in the Constitution's list, Congress
does not have them. One of that limited number of powers delegated to the United States is the power "To regulate
commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes". This is the "Interstate
The 1942 U.S. Supreme Court case of Wickard
v. Filburn held that a small farmer in Ohio could be penalized by the federal government for growing wheat for consumption
on his farm. Farmer Filburn was not engaged in commerce (he did not buy or sell the wheat), nor was he involved with
other states (the wheat never left his farm), so farmer Filburn was not engaged in interstate commerce. However, the
court held that because growing wheat could have an indirect and insubstantial effect on interstate
commerce the federal government had the power to regulate him, including telling him how much wheat he could grow.
This court decision has not been overruled. It means the federal government
can (notwithstanding the clear Constitutional limits) regulate Americans without limit, citing the interstate commerce clause.
There is nothing that could not, in an indirect and minor way, affect interstate commerce. Commerce in wheat could be
affected by breaking bread at communion in church, refraining from eating bread because of a diabetes concern over
glucose, an ethnic preference for eating rice, or just the exercise of consumer free will.
Wickard v. Filburn is a decision that vitiates the constitutional design of a federal government with specified and
limited powers and transforms it into a government whose power is unlimited. This is not a minor matter. A fundamental
principle of society has been changed in a way that circumvents the legitimate amendment process.