U.S. Constitution Too Old To Understand?

Liberal blogger Ezra Klein on the U.S. Constitution:

“…My friends on the right don’t like to hear this, but the Constitution is not a clear document. Written more than 200 years ago, when America had 13 states and very different problems, it rarely speaks directly to the questions we ask it. The Second Amendment, for instance, says nothing about keeping a gun in the home if you’ve not signed up with a ‘well-regulated militia,’ but interpreting the Second Amendment broadly has been important to those who want to bear arms. And so they’ve done it…”

, ,

  • Anonymous

    What is Mr. Klein’s quarrel with the right of us common equal citizens to have a firearm in our homes? The privately-owned handgun is one’s first line of defense against interpersonal criminal aggression. Restriction on firearm ownership privileges criminals over the lawful.

  • robertpinkerton

    What is Mr. Klein’s quarrel with the right of us common equal citizens to have a firearm in our homes? The privately-owned handgun is one’s first line of defense against interpersonal criminal aggression. Restriction on firearm ownership privileges criminals over the lawful.

    • Hunter349

      To a point. Countries with strict hand gun bans like Japan, England, and Australia have much lower rates of murder and armed assaults. It’s a complex issue when you add the peoples ability to defend against physical abuse by a government but when dealing with domestic violence the issue is very clear. Less guns equal less gun violence.

      • Aznative

        well your dead wrong about that. dont apply your foolish opinions to further spread propaganda! read the John Lott report on the subject. a liberal proffessor he sought out to prove what you just stated…. only to find out for a FACT that the opposite was true!

      • warbear

        actually, i think that is just comman sense. its not a safety issue from my perspective, it is totally a rights issue, especially if someone is trying to slowly take them away. the second ammendment is there for the protection of the document, and our lives from tyrants. plain and simple.

  • warbear

    sooo….i think that this interview is a gimmick actually. who is this guy? im pretty sure that he is no more qualified than me (a high school graduate) to say that the constitution is outdated. frankly, who cares. when has the constitution been regarded during the executive branchs’ decision making process in the past 110 years anyway? almost never. and honestly, i think the judicial branch has done a fine job of “interpreting” the constitution. really, i say take it literally. its what we inherited, we might as well go with it. our civilization will not last forever, so whats the big deal about trying to change it?

  • warbear

    sooo….i think that this interview is a gimmick actually. who is this guy? im pretty sure that he is no more qualified than me (a high school graduate) to say that the constitution is outdated. frankly, who cares. when has the constitution been regarded during the executive branchs’ decision making process in the past 110 years anyway? almost never. and honestly, i think the judicial branch has done a fine job of “interpreting” the constitution. really, i say take it literally. its what we inherited, we might as well go with it. our civilization will not last forever, so whats the big deal about trying to change it?

  • http://twitter.com/Marklar_Prime Marklar Kronkite

    This guy is beyond idiotic in his disregard of the constitution. That which is unconstitutional is blatantly unlawful as the constitution is the basis for all authority which WE GRANT to government. Without the constitution government has no authority whatsoever and any legislation in conflict with the constitution has no legal authority whatsoever. Furthermore when a government shows as little regard for the constitution as this moron does it effectively disbands it’s authority to become a dictatorial regime without any legitimacy, a state of affairs which I would argue exists right now. This jerk off needs to be shown the binding power not only of the constitution but of tar and feathers as well.

  • Marklar_Prime

    This guy is beyond idiotic in his disregard of the constitution. That which is unconstitutional is blatantly unlawful as the constitution is the basis for all authority which WE GRANT to government. Without the constitution government has no authority whatsoever and any legislation in conflict with the constitution has no legal authority whatsoever. Furthermore when a government shows as little regard for the constitution as this moron does it effectively disbands it’s authority to become a dictatorial regime without any legitimacy, a state of affairs which I would argue exists right now. This jerk off needs to be shown the binding power not only of the constitution but of tar and feathers as well.

  • http://twitter.com/Marklar_Prime Marklar Kronkite

    Who is he? Well the Washington Post is a well known CIA front for government propaganda so figure it out from there.

  • Marklar_Prime

    Who is he? Well the Washington Post is a well known CIA front for government propaganda so figure it out from there.

  • APR

    If you look at most State constitutions, every able bodied male between the ages of 18 and 45 is part of the militia. That’s the “regulation,” so they ought to be armed. The purpose of the 2nd Amendment isn’t about the right to hunt ducks. It is right there after the 1st for a reason. If petitioning the government for redress of grievances doesn’t work, we are supposed to remove that government, by force of arms if needed. As the old saying goes, when the government fears the people you have liberty, but when the people fear the government you have tyranny. Unfortunately the American Sheeple are too dumb to govern themselves, thanks to a steady diet of television. The Constitution is irrelevant because the America our forefathers created no longer exists. Welcome to the New Age. (Years ago I heard people talk about literally burying their guns so they wouldn’t be confiscated.)

  • APR

    If you look at most State constitutions, every able bodied male between the ages of 18 and 45 is part of the militia. That’s the “regulation,” so they ought to be armed. The purpose of the 2nd Amendment isn’t about the right to hunt ducks. It is right there after the 1st for a reason. If petitioning the government for redress of grievances doesn’t work, we are supposed to remove that government, by force of arms if needed. As the old saying goes, when the government fears the people you have liberty, but when the people fear the government you have tyranny. Unfortunately the American Sheeple are too dumb to govern themselves, thanks to a steady diet of television. The Constitution is irrelevant because the America our forefathers created no longer exists. Welcome to the New Age. (Years ago I heard people talk about literally burying their guns so they wouldn’t be confiscated.)

    • emperorreagan

      I’m not sure how people get this lingering fear that the government is coming to take their guns away. Democrats seem reluctant to even think about gun control in private and the current Supreme Court appears to favor the idea of gun ownership as an individual right. In Maryland, they can’t even keep gun shops that commit egregious violations with respect to straw man sales, sales to felons, etc. closed in spite of being one of the more hostile states in the US to gun ownership. It seems a pretty baseless fear.

      I’m also not sure what people think guns are going to do for them – the Black Panthers had plenty of guns, but when the US government decided they wanted Fred Hampton dead, he wound up dead. Lots of revolutionaries both in the US and abroad have ended up dead at the hands of agents of the US government. I suppose a lot of militia-types must have Rambo-esque fantasies.

      To say that the United States that was created no longer exists is bullshit. No doubt, it no longer exists as an exact replica of the day the constitution was ratified, because a nation is not a static thing, nor have technology, economic theory, moral theory, etc. remained stuck in the 1700s. Of course, the United States was never exactly what you might dream the constitution makes it out to be, because the process of clarification began right off the bat with the Whiskey rebellion, the Alien and Sedition act, etc.

      • Targeteer

        Good reply to APR. The 2nd amendment isn’t going anywhere even though States abridge it with local gun control laws, as does the Federal Gov’t. with the Brady Bill. The amendment’s interpretation is what’s at stake. Armed private militias scare the b’geebers out of the Government, particularly if they try, for example, to take back Texas, as happened in 1997 with the Republic of Texas standoff in the Davis Mountains. Even Article I, section10 prohibits States from keeping “Troops” without “Consent of Congress.”

        To say the Constitution is “irrelevant” as APR claims, denies over 200 years of legislated progress within very framework established originally by the “Framers” themselves!

      • APR

        In the beginning, almost every American colonist had a copy of Blackstone’s Commentaries in his or her bookshelf. People were their own lawyers, aware of the common law. The government is supposed to be “by the people,” but nowadays the people don’t know how to govern themselves. They leave it up to the political class, the power hungry psychopathic personalities, with the result being wars at the behest of the military-industrial-petroleum-etc-complex. The people are led around by the nose, opinions formed by capitalist propaganda, hypnotized by the television. The States are supposed to be constitutionally limited republics, but the propaganda has convinced everyone this is a democracy, which is another word for mob rule, with the people told what to believe by elitist run television. The people do not govern, rather, money runs the nation. Money trumps any concern for the Constitution.

        The largest violation of the Constitution is the banking system we have today. I will contend that we lost the Revolutionary War in 1913 with the formation of the “Federal” Reserve. One of the primary reasons the colonists wanted independence from Europe was the money system. The framers of the Constitution specified a debt-free currency, based on gold and silver (Article One, Section Ten). Now, the European bankers have their continent back. The Fed can print endless amounts of money (actually they buy it for printing cost from government presses) which is created out of nothing, then loan it to us with interest! We pay that interest every year on April 15th in the form of Federal Income Tax. Every dime in your bank account and wallet is borrowed. It isn’t really yours. People don’t seem to realize the criminality of this system. Henry Ford said it best: “It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.”

        When the Constitutionally mandated money system has been completely eliminated, replaced with a system of increasing debt, when the Constitutionally mandated right against being unreasonably searched at places like airports has been eliminated, the Constitution becomes more and more just another piece of paper. It is up to the people to uphold the Constitution and we are doing a lousy job. I will correct myself. It is not completely irrelevant, yet, but it is heading that way at a breakneck pace.

        • emperorreagan

          The problem with respect to banking is that the US was violating the constitution from the get-go. The first bank of the US violated the constitution, according to what Jefferson, etc. had to say on the topic. Hamilton and some of the other founders from NY loved the idea of a central bank and ultimately Washington signed the act creating the first, probably unconstitutional central bank based on Hamilton’s arguments.

          Which ultimately points to a larger problem – if the guys who worked on the constitution, fully aware of all the intent and debates that went into its formation, weren’t bothered to follow it to the letter during the very first presidency, how do you argue for originalism now?

    • Aznative

      true fact! thanks for posting!

  • emperorreagan

    I think it’s a fair statement. Reading the constitution out loud is just a pointless gimmick.

    The constitution has been clarified by decades of supreme court decisions. Parts of it are not particularly clear.

    And even more pointedly – some of their favorite laws are blatantly unconstitutional, like the patriot act, espionage act, etc. yet they have been held up because they’re useful to those in power. The healthcare reform, their most hated bill, has more of a legitimate constitutional leg to stand on than many of their other favorites.

  • emperorreagan

    I think it’s a fair statement. Reading the constitution out loud is just a pointless gimmick. It might give Scalia a boner, though, since it represents a celebration of his point of view with regards to how the constitution should be interpreted.

    The constitution has been clarified by decades of supreme court decisions. Parts of it are not particularly clear – certainly not to someone without a legal background, because even if you read the US constitution in as the originalists on the court do, in the context of “original meaning,” you need the context of what all of the terminology meant as it related to law, in particular English law, in the late 1700s. Most Americans and most people sitting in congress do not have that expertise.

    And even more pointedly – some of their favorite laws are blatantly unconstitutional, like the patriot act, espionage act, etc. yet they have been held up because they’re useful to those in power. The healthcare reform, their most hated bill, has more of a legitimate constitutional leg to stand on than many of their other favorites.

    And again, just “reading” the constitution ignores the long running debate over how the US Constitution should be interpreted – is it a living document, or are you going to accept originalism? What type of originalism do you want to adopt? Do you care about intent and look to the commentary written by the men who wrote it, the states that ratified it, etc, or do you go to original meaning and ignore intent? Do you go with semantic originalism, where while the death penalty wasn’t cruel and unusual at the time the document was authored, moral philosophy generally does regard the death penalty as cruel and unusual now, so it should be interpreted in line with current moral philosophy? Or if you believe that the constitution is a living document, do you think that the founders intentionally wrote the constitution in relatively vague terms to allow for future interpretation? Or do you take a pragmatic approach and argue that it doesn’t make sense to follow views that are outdated?

    • emperorreagan

      Personally, I think the problem with the originalist crowd is that in their refusal to contemplate the constitution in light of the evolution of western civilization, the US finds itself (on some issues) as backwards as some of the Middle Eastern & African countries that Americans mock as being third world backwaters.

      • quartz99

        Considering the majority of “originalists” are also biblical literalists who think we should be living according to a series of books written over time spanning a thousand to thousands of years ago, exactly as they interpret it from the fairly recent (by comparison) and at-the-time politically motivated english translation they cling to, and no other way, it should come as a surprise to no one that they contemplate the Constitution in the same way.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XFMMVBQQFHSWBLHZR5T74P564E memries

      co-sign & utterly concur– although frankly i’m not surprised that the hoi polloi is up in arms over not much ado as the actual study of the interpretation of ConLaw is only pursued in Law Schools.

  • Hadrian999

    basic literacy goes a long way toward understanding the constitution, i guess our culture of soundbites and anything over a sentence earning a TLDR cant handle actually reading the whole document, when I was in HS you had to pass a test on the constitution to graduate

  • Hadrian999

    basic literacy goes a long way toward understanding the constitution, i guess our culture of soundbites and anything over a sentence earning a TLDR cant handle actually reading the whole document, when I was in HS you had to pass a test on the constitution to graduate

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    Its a living document…if it were incorruptible, absolute and perfect…the original wouldn’t have included instructions on how to amend it…which has been done more than two dozen times…ten of them immediately after the ink was dry on the constitution. Anyone who gets on their high horse and plays make believe about it being a literal and unyeilding document needs to divorce their mouth from Sean Hannity’s balls long enough to actually read it.That doesn’t mean its not full of great stuff just the way it is…it just means that Jefferson and Adams and the rest weren’t so full of their own shit that they imagined having created a document and a system that would never need changes. That’s real foresight.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    Its a living document…if it were incorruptible, absolute and perfect…the original wouldn’t have included instructions on how to amend it…which has been done more than two dozen times…ten of them immediately after the ink was dry on the constitution. Anyone who gets on their high horse and plays make believe about it being a literal and unyeilding document needs to divorce their mouth from Sean Hannity’s balls long enough to actually read it.That doesn’t mean its not full of great stuff just the way it is…it just means that Jefferson and Adams and the rest weren’t so full of their own shit that they imagined having created a document and a system that would never need changes. That’s real foresight.

    • Marklar_Prime

      The point is though that if you want to change it you change it rather than simply ignoring it or legislating illegal end runs around it. Of course the feds are also in direct violation of the constitution in that they have never called an article V convention despite hundreds of applications originating from every one of the 50 states, instead illegally reserving the power of amendment, in direct violation to the constitution, to themselves.

    • Hadrian999

      it is a living document in that it has a process for change, but i believe we should treat it as a rigid document until we change it, just ignoring the parts we don’t like is dangerous, if we don’t hold our government to the law we are subjects not citizens

  • http://twitter.com/Marklar_Prime Marklar Kronkite

    The point is though that if you want to change it you change it rather than simply ignoring it or legislating illegal end runs around it. Of course the feds are also in direct violation of the constitution in that they have never called an article V convention despite hundreds of applications originating from every one of the 50 states, instead illegally reserving the power of amendment, in direct violation to the constitution, to themselves.

  • Targeteer

    This week I’m going to the range… In a few days I’ll be exercising my 2nd amendment rights. I’m a military qualified marksman & enjoy keeping in practice shooting paper targets

    Our Constitution consists of VII Articles & XXVI Amendments – an EZ read for those inclined, but also can be studied for a lifetime. Governance is a dynamic process & the Constitution is up for the challenge. With wisdom we too can can challenge ourselves to move its promise well into the future.

  • Targeteer

    This week I’m going to the range… In a few days I’ll be exercising my 2nd amendment rights. I’m a military qualified marksman & enjoy keeping in practice shooting paper targets

    Our Constitution consists of VII Articles & XXVI Amendments – an EZ read for those inclined, but also can be studied for a lifetime. Governance is a dynamic process & the Constitution is up for the challenge. With wisdom we too can can challenge ourselves to move its promise well into the future.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NS7MLVSCJ26VK5NSGYXKMU7TNA Rufus Dill

    When a document has been around a long time like The Bible or The Constitution it begins to lose its grip on reality and become full of errors. Sure the men that wrote the Constitution were wealthy landowners but they were also very much opposed to kings setting themselves up in this country and making themselves lords over everybody else which is what these Metropolisesque corporations want to do to their employees to keep them from ever getting very far in the world, only promoting those that suck their balls enough, and making the vast majority have to do the most menial tasks or risk losing their jobs and therefore their livelihoods if they don’t do as they’re told.

    The forefathers left provisions to amend the Constitution in the Constitution because being Enlightenment era thinkers they thought and hoped that someday we might learn more about the human condition and how to treat all people better than we do or did in their time so the document could be updated to reflect the new found wisdoms as humanity progressed in its understandings of these things.

    The Constitution was never meant to be an Authoritative document in regards to human rights or keeping the rich richer than kings and the poor dirt poor despite being the hardest workers.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NS7MLVSCJ26VK5NSGYXKMU7TNA Rufus Dill

    When a document has been around a long time like The Bible or The Constitution it begins to lose its grip on reality and become full of errors. Sure the men that wrote the Constitution were wealthy landowners but they were also very much opposed to kings setting themselves up in this country and making themselves lords over everybody else which is what these Metropolisesque corporations want to do to their employees to keep them from ever getting very far in the world, only promoting those that suck their balls enough, and making the vast majority have to do the most menial tasks or risk losing their jobs and therefore their livelihoods if they don’t do as they’re told.

    The forefathers left provisions to amend the Constitution in the Constitution because being Enlightenment era thinkers they thought and hoped that someday we might learn more about the human condition and how to treat all people better than we do or did in their time so the document could be updated to reflect the new found wisdoms as humanity progressed in its understandings of these things.

    The Constitution was never meant to be an Authoritative document in regards to human rights or keeping the rich richer than kings and the poor dirt poor despite being the hardest workers.

  • emperorreagan

    Personally, I think the problem with the originalist crowd is that in their refusal to contemplate the constitution in light of the evolution of western civilization, the US finds itself (on some issues) as backwards as some of the Middle Eastern & African countries that Americans mock as being third world backwaters.

  • emperorreagan

    I’m not sure how people get this lingering fear that the government is coming to take their guns away. Democrats seem reluctant to even think about gun control in private and the current Supreme Court appears to favor the idea of gun ownership as an individual right. In Maryland, they can’t even keep gun shops that commit egregious violations with respect to straw man sales, sales to felons, etc. closed in spite of being one of the more hostile states in the US to gun ownership. It seems a pretty baseless fear.

    I’m also not sure what people think guns are going to do for them – the Black Panthers had plenty of guns, but when the US government decided they wanted Fred Hampton dead, he wound up dead. Lots of revolutionaries both in the US and abroad have ended up dead at the hands of agents of the US government. I suppose a lot of militia-types must have Rambo-esque fantasies.

    To say that the United States that was created no longer exists is bullshit. Of course it no longer exists as an exact replica of the day the constitution was ratified, because a nation is not a static thing, nor have technology, economic theory, moral theory, etc. remained stuck in the 1700s. Of course, the United States was never exactly what you might dream the constitution makes it out to be, because the process of clarification began right off the bat with the Whiskey rebellion, the Alien and Sedition act, etc.

  • Hunter349

    To a point. Countries with strict hand gun bans like Japan, England, and Australia have much lower rates of murder and armed assaults. It’s a complex issue when you add the peoples ability to defend against physical abuse by a government but when dealing with domestic violence the issue is very clear. Less guns equal less gun violence.

  • Hadrian999

    it is a living document in that it has a process for change, but i believe we should treat it as a rigid document until we change it, just ignoring the parts we don’t like is dangerous, if we don’t hold our government to the law we are subjects not citizens

  • Targeteer

    Good reply to APR. The 2nd amendment isn’t going anywhere even though States abridge it with local gun control laws, as does the Federal Gov’t. with the Brady Bill. The amendment’s interpretation is what’s at stake. Armed private militias scare the b’geebers out of the Government, particularly if they try, for example, to take back Texas, as happened in 1997 with the Republic of Texas standoff in the Davis Mountains. Even Article I, section10 prohibits States from keeping “Troops” without “Consent of Congress.”

    To say the Constitution is “irrelevant” as APR claims, denies over 200 years of legislated progress within very framework established originally by the “Framers” themselves!

  • Gregory

    The constitution, due to it’s age and the context of the world it was written in can be interpreted different ways by different groups if the audience isn’t interested in doing their own research and being objective. But the core of it is pretty straightforward and I find groups obfuscating and complicating it rather than simply reading what it says.

    The government cannot exact laws that establish or otherwise promote a particular religious belief, for example. This means that it should be illegal to, for example, have anything in anyway to do with any religion to be part of the running of or the recognition of the government. This means the Pledge of Allegiance is meaningless, God Bless America should only be sung in churches as a hymn, no prayers before or anywhere near any legislative session, the removal of God Bless America from currency, license plates, etc etc etc. The government not being allowed to promote or recognize a religion was of the utmost importance, given the framers of the con recalled the theocratic world their ancestors escaped from. The problem, as we have seen, is that it will still be a long time before the need to equate nationalism with religion (both fictions) will be bred out of existence as we still have this ancestral desire to claim that your religion and your nation are the only valid one as, especially in Europe, that had been going on for looong centuries.

    And the whole right to bears arms and militia thing…no…that is a leftist reading of that section and most idiots can do a little research and realize that allowing the people to arm themselves and the establishment of a militia is not one in the same. The people have a right to arm themselves against their government and the idea that you don’t have the right to a firearm if you are not in a militia is laughable. The USA had just fought off the English because they had this right. And the revolution was not a clear-cut, all the colonies against the Redcoats, there was a significant population of people loyal to England and there were many different factions. Even Native Americans fought on both sides of the conflict and all these groups had guns. The idea that Jefferson and Co only wanted the militia to be armed and that regular citizens weren’t supposed to have this right is utter dishwater and calls into question the intelligence of anyone making such a statement.

    The problem with the Constitution isn’t really that it is difficult to read in our modern context, we simply aren’t obeying it. The USA is an experiment to see if a nation can actually allow it’s people to have individual freedom and still be successful. As we have seen, the old world nationalism and tendency toward theocracy has been hard to overcome and the question is can those ideas be overcome and can a nation that produced the constitution be worthy of it. The first step is to actually send your ideology back to Europe and just read the thing at face value and do a bit of research and begin to actually follow the thing.

    fiat lux

  • Gregory

    The constitution, due to it’s age and the context of the world it was written in can be interpreted different ways by different groups if the audience isn’t interested in doing their own research and being objective. But the core of it is pretty straightforward and I find groups obfuscating and complicating it rather than simply reading what it says.

    The government cannot exact laws that establish or otherwise promote a particular religious belief, for example. This means that it should be illegal to, for example, have anything in anyway to do with any religion to be part of the running of or the recognition of the government. This means the Pledge of Allegiance is meaningless, God Bless America should only be sung in churches as a hymn, no prayers before or anywhere near any legislative session, the removal of God Bless America from currency, license plates, etc etc etc. The government not being allowed to promote or recognize a religion was of the utmost importance, given the framers of the con recalled the theocratic world their ancestors escaped from. The problem, as we have seen, is that it will still be a long time before the need to equate nationalism with religion (both fictions) will be bred out of existence as we still have this ancestral desire to claim that your religion and your nation are the only valid one as, especially in Europe, that had been going on for looong centuries.

    And the whole right to bears arms and militia thing…no…that is a leftist reading of that section and most idiots can do a little research and realize that allowing the people to arm themselves and the establishment of a militia is not one in the same. The people have a right to arm themselves against their government and the idea that you don’t have the right to a firearm if you are not in a militia is laughable. The USA had just fought off the English because they had this right. And the revolution was not a clear-cut, all the colonies against the Redcoats, there was a significant population of people loyal to England and there were many different factions. Even Native Americans fought on both sides of the conflict and all these groups had guns. The idea that Jefferson and Co only wanted the militia to be armed and that regular citizens weren’t supposed to have this right is utter dishwater and calls into question the intelligence of anyone making such a statement.

    The problem with the Constitution isn’t really that it is difficult to read in our modern context, we simply aren’t obeying it. The USA is an experiment to see if a nation can actually allow it’s people to have individual freedom and still be successful. As we have seen, the old world nationalism and tendency toward theocracy has been hard to overcome and the question is can those ideas be overcome and can a nation that produced the constitution be worthy of it. The first step is to actually send your ideology back to Europe and just read the thing at face value and do a bit of research and begin to actually follow the thing.

    fiat lux

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XFMMVBQQFHSWBLHZR5T74P564E memries

      then why was the whole militia thingy put in?

      you saying that we can pick and choose?

  • Aznative

    well your dead wrong about that. dont apply your foolish opinions to further spread propaganda! read the John Lott report on the subject. a liberal proffessor he sought out to prove what you just stated…. only to find out for a FACT that the opposite was true!

  • Aznative

    true fact! thanks for posting!

  • APR

    In the beginning, almost every American colonist had a copy of Blackstone’s Commentaries in his or her bookshelf. People were their own lawyers, aware of the common law. The government is supposed to be “by the people,” but nowadays the people don’t know how to govern themselves. They leave it up to the political class, the power hungry psychopathic personalities, with the result being wars at the behest of the military-industrial-petroleum-etc-complex. The people are led around by the nose, opinions formed by capitalist propaganda, hypnotized by the television. The States are supposed to be constitutionally limited republics, but the propaganda has convinced everyone this is a democracy, which is another word for mob rule, with the people told what to believe by elitist run television. The people do not govern, rather, money runs the nation. Money trumps any concern for the Constitution.

    The largest violation of the Constitution is the banking system we have today. I will contend that we lost the Revolutionary War in 1913 with the formation of the “Federal” Reserve. One of the primary reasons the colonists wanted independence from Europe was the money system. The framers of the Constitution specified a debt-free currency, based on gold and silver (Article One, Section Ten). Now, the European bankers have their continent back. The Fed can print endless amounts of money (actually they buy it for printing cost from government presses) which is created out of nothing, then loan it to us with interest! We pay that interest every year on April 15th in the form of Federal Income Tax. Every dime in your bank account and wallet is borrowed. It isn’t really yours. People don’t seem to realize the criminality of this system. Henry Ford said it best: “It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.”

    When the Constitutionally mandated money system has been completely eliminated, replaced with a system of increasing debt, when the Constitutionally mandated right against being unreasonably searched at places like airports has been eliminated, the Constitution becomes more and more just another piece of paper. It is up to the people to uphold the Constitution and we are doing a lousy job. I will correct myself. It is not completely irrelevant, yet, but it is heading that way at a breakneck pace.

  • emperorreagan

    The problem with respect to banking is that the US was violating the constitution from the get-go. The first bank of the US violated the constitution, according to what Jefferson, etc. had to say on the topic. Hamilton and some of the other founders from NY loved the idea of a central bank and ultimately Washington signed the act creating the first, probably unconstitutional central bank based on Hamilton’s arguments.

    Which ultimately points to a larger problem – if the guys who worked on the constitution, fully aware of all the intent and debates that went into its formation, weren’t bothered to follow it to the letter during the very first presidency, how do you argue for originalism now?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XFMMVBQQFHSWBLHZR5T74P564E memries

    co-sign & utterly concur– although frankly i’m not surprised that the hoi polloi is up in arms over not much ado as the actual study of the interpretation of ConLaw is only pursued in Law Schools.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XFMMVBQQFHSWBLHZR5T74P564E memries

    then why was the whole militia thingy put in?

    you saying that we can pick and choose?

  • Anonymous

    Considering the majority of “originalists” are also biblical literalists who think we should be living according to a series of books written over time spanning a thousand to thousands of years ago, exactly as they interpret it from the fairly recent (by comparison) and at-the-time politically motivated english translation they cling to, and no other way, it should come as a surprise to no one that they contemplate the Constitution in the same way.

  • moonkid

    The “guns are defence against criminals” argument just doesn’t hold up. Guns are far more likely to hurt someone you know than a random criminal. Rights are all very well, but humans are irrational creatures. Which, ironically, is the same reason that so many Americans (in particular) insist that having guns is a good idea.

    Still, the guns aren’t going anywhere, because the gun lobby is just too powerful in the US. I live in Australia, where handguns were already extremely uncommon before restrictions were tightened after the Port Arthur massacre in 1996. I feel far safer here than I did when I lived Stateside, knowing that any crazy I passed on the street could be packing.

  • moonkid

    The “guns are defence against criminals” argument just doesn’t hold up. Guns are far more likely to hurt someone you know than a random criminal. Rights are all very well, but humans are irrational creatures. Which, ironically, is the same reason that so many Americans (in particular) insist that having guns is a good idea.

    Still, the guns aren’t going anywhere, because the gun lobby is just too powerful in the US. I live in Australia, where handguns were already extremely uncommon before restrictions were tightened after the Port Arthur massacre in 1996. I feel far safer here than I did when I lived Stateside, knowing that any crazy I passed on the street could be packing.

  • warbear

    actually, i think that is just comman sense. its not a safety issue from my perspective, it is totally a rights issue, especially if someone is trying to slowly take them away. the second ammendment is there for the protection of the document, and our lives from tyrants. plain and simple.

  • Goose

    Sounds like some other old text I know

  • Goose

    Sounds like some other old text I know

21