By Allan Wall, December 28, 2021
The Boston Globe has published a collection of essays entitled, “Editing the Constitution.”
There is a built-in mechanism for editing the U.S. Constitution. It’s called the amendment process, spelled out in Article V of the Constitution itself.
This process has been utilized sparingly to amend the Constitution during the past 200+ years. And there have been some significant changes made via constitutional amendments.
The 12th Amendment changed how we select the President and Vice President, the latter of whom was previously the runner-up in the presidential election. (Imagine Hillary as Trump’s VP or Trump as Biden’s Vice President!)
The 13th Amendment abolished slavery. The 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote. The 26th Amendment lowered the voting age from 21 to 18 years old.
The 18th Amendment enacted the prohibition of alcoholic beverages and the 21st Amendment repealed the 18th Amendment.
So yes, amendments have greatly changed American life.
What does the Boston Globe have in mind?
Besides the introduction to the collection, written by Abdallah Fayad, there are 13 essays proposing changes.
Check them out for yourself, and see what you think.
Let’s consider two of the essays — the one on immigration and the one on the First and Second Amendments.
Jeff Jacoby’s contribution is an essay entitled, “Restore the Original Immigration Policy: An Open Door.”
Jacoby begins the essay by boldly declaring, “The Framers of the Constitution gave the federal government no authority to restrict peaceful immigration.”
Jacoby’s proposed amendment:
“Neither the United States, nor any State, shall restrict immigration from nations with which the United States is not in a state of war, unless such restrictions are narrowly tailored to the advancement of a compelling government interest.”
Open borders in the 21st century means the loss of American sovereignty. That’s why globalists like the open borders concept.
Another essay, by Mary Anne Franks, is entitled, “Redo the First Two Amendments.”
Who is Mary Anne Franks? According to her bio at the bottom of the essay, she is the “Michael R. Klein Distinguished Scholar Chair at the University of Miami School of Law.”
Significantly, she has authored a book entitled, “The Cult of the Constitution: Our Deadly Devotion to Guns and Free Speech.” Hmmm.
Dr. Franks says this of both the First and Second Amendments: “As legal texts go, neither of the two amendments is a model of clarity or precision.”
But how clear and precise are her proposals?
The First Amendment reads:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
But here is part of the New First Amendment proposed by Dr. Franks:
“Every person has the right to freedom of expression, association, peaceful assembly, and petition of the government for redress of grievances, consistent with the rights of others to the same and subject to responsibility for abuses. All conflicts of such rights shall be resolved in accordance with the principle of equality and dignity of all persons.”
So Americans would have freedom of expression, however, this freedom would be “subject to responsibility for abuses.”
What abuses? And who decides?
And she criticizes the original text for lack of clarity?
The Second Amendment reads:
“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
Here is the “improved version” by Dr. Franks:
“All people have the right to bodily autonomy consistent with the right of other people to the same, including the right to defend themselves against unlawful force and the right of self-determination in reproductive matters. The government shall take reasonable measures to protect the health and safety of the public as a whole.”
Notice how she smuggles in “self-determination in reproductive matters” and changes the subject of the Second Amendment?
No thanks, Dr. Franks, we’re better off with our current First and Second Amendments.
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