Saturday, February 17, 2018
Crying for the Winds of Change
“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” – George Bernard Shaw
Want a factual argument? Here's one.
A Continental Solider would have been outfitted to fight by the government (he also would have taken guns from the British along the way). However, a militiaman would not. He would have been told what to bring, such as his own rifle, thus "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." James Madison knew how important it was to fend off tyranny, to always have those militiamen at the ready, so this amendment made it into the Constitution.
However, We The People know the Constitution is a fluid document. How else did all those amendments get added after the original document was ratified in 1788? People of color can vote (the founding fathers said African-American men couldn't, and that law stood until 1870, and African-American women couldn't until 1920). Women can vote (those same founding fathers said women couldn't, and no woman could vote until 1920). We don't have to pay a poll tax to vote (there was a charge to vote until 1964). The VP can take over presidential duties in case of emergency (the founding fathers never foresaw an instance to set this up; maybe they didn't see everything coming. The VP couldn't officially do this until 1965). These were not always laws. They were added after ratification.
Did you hear that?
The Constitution can. be. changed.
Article V of the Constitution even allows this. The Constitution itself allows for change. Congress proposes an amendment. If it passes with a 2/3 majority in the House and in the Senate, it then goes to the individual states. It takes 3/4 (38 out of 50) of the states to ratify the amendment. As soon as they do, it's done. Changed. (please understand this is an incredibly simplified version of the process.)
Do you know what this means? This means that if we find our society has outpaced the original laws that were written 230 years ago, we can do something about them. Just as we have protected people of color. Just as we have protected women. Just as we have protected our voting process. Just as we have ensured the successful continuation of governance if our President should fall. It's time we look to protect the rest of society as well.