Freedom selectmen have unanimously accepted a petition that would put the question of corporate personhood on the annual town meeting warrant, according to a press release from Selectman Brian Jones.

The resolution would call on elected representatives to, in the language of the petition, “amend the United States Constitution to explicitly state that corporations are not human beings.”

That line was most recently blurred by the contentious 2010 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in the case of Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, which effectively dissolved distinctions between individuals, media and corporations with regard to political speech, including campaign contributions.

The petitioners in Freedom are alleging that “the great wealth of large corporations allows them to wield coercive force of law to overpower human beings and communities” and that “corporations are not and have never been human beings, and therefore are rightfully subservient to human beings and governments as our legal creations.”

Addressing the petition, Jones said, “We have a tradition of citizen-initiated legislation in Freedom,” and since the petition was duly certified, “there is no reason for the citizens not to consider the question.”

If passed, the resolution would direct the selectmen to forward a copy of the declaration to President Barack Obama, U.S. Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, Representative Mike Michaud, and all members of the Maine Legislature.

Freedom’s town meeting will be held Saturday, March 10 at the Dirigo Grange.