Skip to comments.Constitution: Dead or alive?
Posted on 02/27/2006 12:16:31 PM PST by JZelle
He's ba-a-a-ck. Not that he ever really goes away. After all, he has life tenure. This time the Hon. Antonin Scalia was calling those of us who think of the Constitution of the United States as a living document "idiots." No, this wasn't Ann Coulter doing her stand-up routine, but rather an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. Welcome to civil discourse, 21st century-style. A decent respect for those who hold to a different philosophy of law, or of anything else, now seems to have gone the way of powdered wigs, dress swords and chivalry in general. This time Justice Scalia was caught talking out of school, or rather his courtroom, at a meeting of the Federalist Society down in Puerto Rico -- although his formal opinions are scarcely more temperate. His subject on this occasion: The idea of a living Constitution and why it's wrong, wrong, wrong. Mr. Justice Scalia summed up the idea before dismissing it as idiotic. "That's the argument of flexibility," he explained, "and it goes something like this: The Constitution is over 200 years old and societies change. It has to change with society, like a living organism, or it will become brittle and break."
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com ...
God help me, but I detest, despise and hate this leftist filth.
Of course the Constitution can evolve as times and society change. That's exactly what the Amendment process is for.
Greenberg obviously is an idiot!
Waaaahhh! He called us a name!
I would imagine being called an idiot is a relatively common event in the world of Paul Greenberg.
Living things radically transform even when the only variable is time. The Constitution changes when you follow the proscribed and rigorous procedures designed to alter the document. It doesn't age or mature or learn or grow on its own.
People who say that the Constitution is a Living Document ARE idiots.
What the democRATS mean is "lets meld it into something that we can use to get our socialist agenda passed"
The Constitution of the United States is a masterwork of the plastic art of jurisprudence, subject to different interpretations at different times.
According to Greenberg, they might just as well have written the document on a chalkboard.
What's that old saying?
It's better to keep your mouth shut and appear to be an idiot, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.
I wonder if we inform Mr. Greenberg that his home mortgage is a living document which can be increased to reflect current realities in the mortgage market would he think us an idiot. What is it with liberals that they cannot understand contract law?
I disagree, it has been explained away very well. To the point where it is only relevant today.
"Of course the Constitution can evolve as times and society change. That's exactly what the Amendment process is for."
But, that would take too much time and a majority of American citizens to support their socialist changes.
Paul Greenberg is a good guy--in fact I think he's the one who first tagged Bill Clinton with the "Slick Willie" nickname. He was writing columns denouncing Clinton back when most people had barely heard of Clinton. But nobody's right all the time.
So the Constitution should live and breath with the times?
Okay, I think Journalists have WAY TOO MUCH freedom when it comes to printing stupid articles like this one. I say we ban the publications of stuff like this.
Freedom of the Press is an ancient idea 200 years dead anyway....
You need to compare the situation today with that in Europe. Federal guns laws bearely touch on the right. In Europe it is rare to find guns in the hands of private persons. Hunting in Germany, for instance, is much more tightly controlled than here in the states. If it much more difficult to hunt here than it used to be, it is because the scarcity of places to hunt has made it a sport for the well-to-do. Most restrictions are state imposed, and it is harder to argue that states have no right to regulate the use of guns.
Or not written it at all. If it only means what the current Supreme Court at any time wants it to mean, we don't need it. We only need the current SC of that time to make decisions based on their own feelings.
Would the "living Constitution" supporters be willing to have their nightmare version of a Republican president and his Supreme Court determine what the meaning of the Constitution is at their whim? However, at that point they would probably insist on the sacredness of Supreme Court precedent - kind of "Living Constitution, permanently engraved rulings".
...This time the Hon. Antonin Scalia was calling those of us who think of the Constitution of the United States as a living document "idiots."...
And as usual, he's right.
The first amendment freedom of the press was written in a time when newpapers were printed one sheet at a time, not on huge superfast "assault" presses. And it applied only to printing presses - not to anything associated with Ben Franklin's lightning like radio, television or the internet. < /sarcasm of mass destruction>
"Its dead, Jim".
By writing his lame-brained article, Mr. Greenberg has convinced me of a few things: 1) Mr. Greenberg is not a constitutional scholar. 2) Mr. Greenberg is not a judge. 3) Mr. Greenberg is a complete a$$. 4) Mr. Greenberg is an idiot. 5) Mr. Greenberg needs to go back in history and study what the constitution is, and what it says-not what he wants it to say. 6) Mr. Greenberg is a moron. 7) Justice Scalia was correct in his statement about folks saying the constitution is a "living document" being idiots.
definitely need to read this
For the most part, they are the same people.
That's just fancy language for the amendment process. It's not the document that's "living", it's our democratic republic. Else the "strict constructionists" would have a hard time reconciling that women and Blacks have equal rights..
Nevertheless, they will steadfastly maintain that notion until their last, dying breath.
Hhmmm...Which might not be such a bad idea!
No, the author makes it quite clear he is talking about something in addition to amending the Constitution.
with all respects to Chief Justice John G. Roberts, the man who should have gotten that post was Nino!
I think everybody can agree on that. What we disagree on is the method of change. They want judicial fiat where a few people have the power to change it, we want the amendment process as the Founders so wisely included in the Constitution.
Considering the way in which Roberts beat the Senators, could you imagine if Scalia had a confirmation hearing? Fat Ted would have been crying for his mommy on C-Span.
Well, peoples' views do change over time. Privacy is one issue that has gained more importance as the methods of invading one's "personal affects" has multiplied with technology.
But the fact that the Founders left an amendment process means they anticipated that things were not going to remain static in this country.
Hunting is not protected in the constitution....GUNS ARE!
the second amendment is about protection from tyranny from within and without of our nation.
"Most restrictions are state imposed, and it is harder to argue that states have no right to regulate the use of guns."
".....the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed......"
"Supremem law of the Land", "Shall not be infringed", ect... still mean now what they meant back then despite judicial misinterpretations and outright unConstitutional laws that have been penned since then.
"Greenberg obviously is an idiot!"
No, he's a self-serving mealy mouthed hypocrit. His concern for the anger level in the discourse only manifestes itself when the right fires back.
Back in the 70's and since then anyone who disagreed in any way with a liberal was a "nazi" among many other things.
Suck it up, Paulie.
I wonder what these people that call the constitution a "living document" would say if their bank decided that their mortgage was a "living document".
I have never had a substantive reply, when arguing with a anti-gun nut, when I say that journalists should have to license their keyboards and typewriters, no one could have forseen the invention of these dangerous devices. They should only be allowed to write by longhand, or use an old style printing press.....unless of course they want to be severely regulated.
O'Connor was actually more constructionist than Scalia in that case, although Thomas (in dissenting like O'Connor) said it best:
If Congress can regulate this under the Commerce Clause, then it can regulate virtually anythingand the Federal Government is no longer one of limited and enumerated powers.
Given that the Bill of Rights is meant to limit the national government, I don't go along with this. IMHO, each state is a separate poliitical community and ought to be free to make its rule of safety and comity. If you don't like the gun laws of New York. move to Texas.
In a diverse society, where its diversity is emphasized over its foundational roots, it is inevitable that there arise conflicts about whose moral code is to be adhered to.
Nevertheless, a society without a moral compass will eventually lose its heading.
Nations set themselves adrift when they have no steadfast point of reference.
A people who decide what is right or wrong solely on relative positions are like the nearsighted navigator who always finds them self on course by focusing on the twinkle just over the horizon.
They never realize that the twinkle is the captains lamp at the other end of the ship, steering them only to the course theyve already predetermined.
As usual, Scalia is right.
Greenberg's got it wrong, easy for an idiot. The opposite of a "living" Constitution is a respected one.
Yeah! Let's require them all to be registered with the local law enforcement agency!
Just what are you trying to say, newbie (suspected troll)?
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