Essay:Originalism and the Constitution/blog

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The blog posting referred to


Conservatives, first and foremost, believe in the Constitution. We believe in the principals established in it, namely the blessings of liberty endowed by our Creator and defended by a limited government with enumerated powers.

We believe in the exact words the founders chose to brilliantly establish our nation. If our Constitution was meant to be a living, breathing document whose meaning changes, then the founders would have adopted an unwritten Constitution similar to Great Britian. Instead, they created a different method, if necessary, for making changes to the Constitution - the amendment process.

The Constitutional amendment process was intentionally made difficult to serve as one of many safeguards that limit the power of the national government. We believe in that process and a strict reading of the text of the Constitution. Judges legislating from the bench and creating whole new constitutional rights is a subversion of the supremacy of the Constitution; moreover, it endangers the liberty of every American.

Additionally, Conservatives believe in the Bill of Rights. Unlike the Left, we believe in all of them. I am going to discuss just three of them here, and how they are abused by the Left in their attempt to make their Socialist nightmare a reality.

The First Amendment guarentees a number of rights; however, the only part of the amendment that seems to interest the Left is the Establishment Clause - stating that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion." This, of course, is designed to prevent a state established church such as the Church of England - a church that compells membership and tax payments. Unfortunately, the Left twists this clause to deny Americans their right to the free execise of religion. Providing students with an optional moment to pray does not establish a religion. It provides them with the oportunity to freely execise their religion. No one is compelled to pray.

Freedom of speech and of the press are two First Amendment rights that the Left also twist to meet their socialist agenda. When a person want to burn an American flag on the steps of the capital - the Left claims freedom of speech; however, when talk radio show hosts practice their freedom of speech, the Left attempts to silence them with policies such as the Fairness Doctrine. More recently, Harry Reid and over 40 other current Democratic United States Senators authored and sent a letter to Rush Limbaugh's broadcasting partner in an attempt to silence him.

The Second Amendment is one of America's most important rights. The Left constantly abuse it and attempt to undermine it. This right, however, keeps a certain element of power in the hands of the people - a right that our revolutionary founders made great use of. The right keep keep and bear arms ensures that we have the ability to assemble an armed militia in the case of a government that grows totalitarian. Had the founder's themselves not had this right, our country would not exisist, and it exists today as a further limit on the growth of the government. It is, in a manner of speaking, our final safeguard. It also has the bonus advantage of helping to defend against a possible invasion.

Every one of the Bill of Rights are designed to limit the power of the national government. The founders were incredibly understanind in the area of human nature. They knew that the more power that the government had the more likely it would be that even the best of men would abuse that power. Instead of giving the government broad authority over the nation, the Constitution established certain enumerated powers.

This leads us the the all important Tenth Amendement. Unfortunately, this incredible amendment has been almost wholly ignored by the Socialist Left. The Tenth Amendment states: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people." This means that the government can do what the Constitution explicitly says it can do and no more. If we wish to grant the government additional powers, we can amend the Constitution.

Unfortunatly, the federal government has grown substantially over the last century - largely due to the precedents set by FDR and his Leftist Supreme Court. His New Deal legislation attemptted time and time again to violate the Constitution, and the Supreme Court ruled as such time and time again - until he threatened to pack the Supreme Court by adding six more justices that agreed with his ideology. Under such political pressures and fear, the court completely shifted its rulings; furthermore, over his 4 terms in office FDR was able to appoint 8 Justices to the Court. Following the empire of FDR, the American people saw that there was a need to limit Presidents to just 2 terms, and correctly, the Constitution was amended.

The founding fathers set out to create a nation based on certain principles and values that they believed were of the greatest significance. We have all heard lists of such values: life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, et cetera. They saw such rights as unalienable and bestowed upon us from God. Furthermore, because the founders had such a seemingly unprecedented understanding of human nature and the world in general, they established a government designed, ultimately, to protect against infringement of those rights.

This understanding of human nature and acknowledgement of inalienable rights from God (meaning the government does not give the rights to us, therefore they cannot take them away) is what has made the United States so very unique – so revolutionary. What has made our country so blessed is not the fact that we established a democratic form of government. The Greeks did so centuries ago. America, however, took democratic government a step further by establishing limits on government power, even the instance of a majority opinion. We officially embraced the notion for the first time in human history that the government serves the people and not vice versa.

We must defend the Constitution and reverse the current growth of Government power. We are on track to become an authoritarian Socialist state, and although those on the Left would rewrite history to show otherwise, history has show us time and time again that Socialism leads to submission, death, and destruction.