Thursday, January 6, 2011

It's ALL about the Constitution?

Gavel in hand, Rep John Boehner (R-OH), the 53rd Speaker of the House pledged "to give government back to the people."  Yeah right, and if you believe that, I have this ..... you fill in the blank!

Most disconcerting to me is the omnipresent reverence to the Constitution as though it's their sacred Bible, yet no one seems to understand what it says.  They read the words, but it's as though they go in one eye and out the other without any mental processing in between.

But that doesn't matter, with great pomposity, the full Constitution is being 'read' into the record during today's (01/06/11) session. Newly adopted rules now require that each bill submitted contain a 'statement of Constitutional Authority.' That statement is to specify the specific section of the Constitution that empowers Congress to enact the proposed legislation.  But if that's not enough, in late January, Justice Scalia will be instructing members of the 112th Congress on the first of a number of constitutional seminars for conservative members of Congress.

Excuse me?  Justice Scalia?  This guy is the poster child for activist justices who attempt to legislate from the bench. As if we didn't have enough confusion about the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, and Rep. King thinking that he can just pass a bill in Congress that will negate its birthright guarantees, now they're going to have Scalia, who thinks women and gays aren't protected by the 14th Amendment, teach classes for Conservative Congressmen?  What are they smoking, or drinking?

According to Justice Scalia, the 14th Amendment shouldn't apply to gays. But, before I go on, let's look at Section 1 (the due process clause) of the 14th Amendment:

14th Amendment, Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

According to Justice Scalia, “The due process clause has been distorted so it’s no longer a guarantee of process but a guarantee of liberty,” Scalia expounded. “But some of the liberties the Supreme Court has found to be protected by that word – liberty – nobody thought constituted a liberty when the 14th Amendment was adopted. Homosexual sodomy? It was criminal in all the states. Abortion? It was criminal in all the states.”

Good grief, if Justice Scalia wants to claim that, then he should also believe that the 2nd Amendment only provides the freedom for people to own and use a musket with which to protect himself, not an Uzi.

Justice Scalia has argued that "the Constitution tells the current society that it cannot do [whatever] it wants to do... Now if you give to those many provisions of the Constitution that are necessarily broad--such as due process of law, cruel and unusual punishments, equal protection of the laws--if you give them an evolving meaning so that they have whatever meaning the current society thinks they ought to have, they are no limitation on the current society at all."

According to Justice Scalia, “The way to change the Constitution is through amendments approved by the people, not by judges altering the meaning of its words.”  And that deserves another, Yeah Right!  Tell me that one again with a straight face after you, Mr. Scalia, helped create one of the greatest travesties of our time with the Citizens United ruling that gave citizenship rights and privileges to multi-national Corporations, and who just bought the last election and our country lock, stock, and barrel.

The 14th Amendment was intended to prevent discrimination in basic civil rights of PEOPLE.  As I see things, not just men, not just whites, but women, people of color, and people with different sexual orientations all 'people' ... and therefore, are covered by the provisions and guarantees outlined in the 14th amendment.  There is a reason why our founding fathers chose the word 'people.'  They chose that word so as to be inclusive of all of the citizens of our great nation.

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1 comment:

Desert Beacon said...

Heaven help us, it's all pure Theater! and very little else. As if the Republicans were intent upon creating the illusion of governance without having to actually tackle any sticky sweaty effort. In short, it's all "play" and no work.