America Divided
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20-04-2016, 05:18 PM
RE: America Divided
(20-04-2016 02:43 PM)Lord Dark Helmet Wrote:  
(20-04-2016 09:45 AM)epronovost Wrote:  I would be of the opinion that basing court decision solely on a document over 200 years old in a society that so dramatically changed and faces so different issues now than in the past is a bad idea. If the role of the Suprem Court is to administrate justice, then they need to rely on their judgement and morals as much as on the letter of the law else it could seriously diminish our trust in that justice system. Back when decision where more unanymous, the «majority» barely represented 10 to 20% of the total population that stood under those laws. In my opinion, those decision always were based on «personnal political and social views». Those views were simply more homogenous. The Supreme Court is composed of much more diverse persons than in the past. The division isn't along Party lines. There is no such thing as a party line in America, at least not in the sense that Canada or Britain as it for exemple. Just reading the «party line» of Democrates and Republican will show you that they even hold contradictory positions and encompass a wide political spectrum. Democrates and Republican switched roles in the past. The division in the Supreme Court is alongst whose liberal or conservative. At the moment Democrates represent liberals while Republicans represent conservatives. As libertarians and socialists gain influence and as liberals and conservatives changes over time, another switch might very well occur.

The correct way is to change the Constitution. The wrong way is to interpret the Constitution to fit an agenda. The law is the law. Don't like the law? Change it. The Constitution was written that way to prevent a 51% majority from infringing on the rights of others. In order to make a major change, many things must happen. A super majority of Americans would want the change. They would need to elect enough representatives in their states to have to votes to make an amendment. This guarantees that a LARGE majority want that amendment. This process is being circumvented utilizing activists judges that "interpret" the Constitution in accordance with their political leanings. The intention of the founders is completely ignored, especially by liberal judges as they try to be on the right side of history.

What laws in particular? Ones relating to technology? Health care? Space travel?

The Constitution does not address issues in particular but in general. It must be interpreted so as to apply to a vastly different society with vastly different problems.

Where does the Constitution address marriage, abortion, computer security, drones, vaccinations, assisted suicide, or other things that not only didn't exist 200+ years ago but couldn't even be foreseen?

You're talking smack, dude. Drinking Beverage

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20-04-2016, 09:35 PM
RE: America Divided
(20-04-2016 05:18 PM)Chas Wrote:  What laws in particular? Ones relating to technology? Health care? Space travel?

The Constitution does not address issues in particular but in general. It must be interpreted so as to apply to a vastly different society with vastly different problems.

Where does the Constitution address marriage, abortion, computer security, drones, vaccinations, assisted suicide, or other things that not only didn't exist 200+ years ago but couldn't even be foreseen?

You're talking smack, dude. Drinking Beverage

And assault rifles, don't forget them. Tongue

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21-04-2016, 06:13 AM
RE: America Divided
(20-04-2016 09:35 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(20-04-2016 05:18 PM)Chas Wrote:  What laws in particular? Ones relating to technology? Health care? Space travel?

The Constitution does not address issues in particular but in general. It must be interpreted so as to apply to a vastly different society with vastly different problems.

Where does the Constitution address marriage, abortion, computer security, drones, vaccinations, assisted suicide, or other things that not only didn't exist 200+ years ago but couldn't even be foreseen?

You're talking smack, dude. Drinking Beverage

And assault rifles, don't forget them. Tongue

Ground-to-air missile launchers? Helicopter gunships?

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21-04-2016, 08:01 AM
RE: America Divided
I prefer South America. Better music. Smile

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22-04-2016, 05:27 AM
RE: America Divided
The nice thing about this forum is you can take an extended vacation, come back and the consistency of arguments and positions make it easy to jump right back in as if you never left.

Some thoughts on the topic.

First, who cares what 75% of Americans think? 42% of Americans think the Earth is under 10,000 years old. So, clearly opinion polls are going to be suspect and also count the idiots in our society. I'd also wager that a vast majority of Americans have never read the Constitution or have any idea what it says. Something like 20% of professed Christians have actually read the bible. You think a greater number has read the US Constitution? I certainly don't.

As for the idea of just following the law as it's written, it's not quite as simple as you're making it out to be. Two examples.

The first is the case of Marbury v Madison from 1803. In that case, the US Supreme Court set out their ability to provide judicial review and set up the authority of the court over the other branches. The court had to do this because the Constitution doesn't actually do any of that. Now, this happened in 1803. And "Madison" was secretary of state James Madison, who is the same James Madison who actually wrote the fucking Constitution. So, I think it's safe to say that the Founding Fathers were alive and watching this. The document was just over 10 years old and we already had the courts needing to interpret it. Clearly, it's a little more opaque than some would want you to believe.

Let's take a second example of gay marriage. Section I of the 14th Amendment reads as follows:

"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."

Equal protection. It's right there in the last line. That is the justification for gay marriage. It doesn't say straight persons. It says nothing about sexuality. It just says "any person". Opponents will tell you that they didn't know about gay people and didn't intend this as a protection. Generally, those same people will argue that the word "arms" in the 2nd Amendment include any weapon man can manufacture and is not limited to flintlocks and muskets, the only arms the founders knew about. But, you can't have it both ways. So, was the court following the law when they legalized gay marriage? I think they did. But, there are arguments as to why they did not.

I do think it's tough to argue against the idea that the court has at times legislated from the bench. Roe v Wage is a good example. Regardless of one's view on abortion, I think it's tough to justify any constitutional interpretation that justifies the trimester system the court set forth in that decision. They made that up out of thin air and, in my opinion, exceeded their authority. But, I don't think that is the norm.

As for the view the court is more politicized than ever, I think there is probably something to that. It is a very recent phenomena where we put political litmus tests as part of the confirmation process. We've made the choosing of a justice such a political thing that we end up with politically leaning justices. I think we are worse off as a country because of that too, but I don't think it's going to change in the near term. But, even with that, you get surprises. Who would have thought John Roberts would have voted to uphold The Affordable Care Act? I sure wouldn't have.

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