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According to a certain Supreme Court Justice:

Quote:
Justice Antonin Scalia said Monday evening that the Constitution is not a living document, according to the Dallas Morning News.

“It’s not a living document. It's dead, dead, dead," Scalia said during a guest lecture at Southern Methodist University, while promoting his new book, Reading Law: The Interpretation of Legal Text.

The Reagan-appointed jurist, who shared the stage with his co-author Bryan Garner, argued that good jurisprudence is about sidelining one's personal beliefs.

"The judge who always likes the results he reaches is a bad judge," Scalia said.


I guess Scalia is around to bury the remains, then?
Omnileech's avatar

Omnipresent Warlord

He's been saying that for a while now, but I don't think he really means what he says. If you were to interpret the Constitution for what you believe society at the time the Constitution and Amendments were ratified then you would be limited to the imagination and ideas present at the time of the constitution's founding. Scalia for instance, believes that hand-held rockets are legal for the common citizen to own under the Second Amendment despite the fact that the idea of a portable missile-launcher did not exist and I would bet Scalia all the money in the world that he couldn't find a primary-source document from the era to prove otherwise.
Less Than Liz's avatar

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What's your point? That you disagree with his judicial philosophy? Okay, that's well and good, but why not explain your position instead of posting a conclusory statement, as if Original Intent, Textualism or anything besides a Living Constitution is implicitly incorrect. Oh, look, Scalia used the word "dead" to make rhetorical point. Crazy.
The U.S. Constitution has been dead for a long ******** time.
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Certainly it's dead. Parchment really ought to be dead; if it were to start moving around hundreds of years after it was peeled off the animal it came from, I'd freak out, myself.
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper? Why not start over from scratch? Isn't the Constitution something like the Bible of the United States? Is the Bible dead, too?
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Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper? Why not start over from scratch? Isn't the Constitution something like the Bible of the United States? Is the Bible dead, too?

I'm not sure if you're being deliberately obtuse, or if you're simply ignorant of what Living Constitution means and, consequently, the point he's trying to make.
Xiam's avatar

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Wendigo
Certainly it's dead. Parchment really ought to be dead; if it were to start moving around hundreds of years after it was peeled off the animal it came from, I'd freak out, myself.

I thought parchment was made from paper... eek

(After a quick Google search...)

Oh, well. I learned something new today.
The Herald of War's avatar

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Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper?


You have to make me wonder if you're becoming some kind of parody. Because all he means is that the interpretation should remain the same as when it was written essentially. Interpretation should remain static and not account for new circumstances. This would, in fact, suggest there should be more amending to update it to allow for new meaning to be put in.
The Herald of War
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper?


You have to make me wonder if you're becoming some kind of parody. Because all he means is that the interpretation should remain the same as when it was written essentially. Interpretation should remain static and not account for new circumstances. This would, in fact, suggest there should be more amending to update it to allow for new meaning to be put in.

Very astute.

But how much amending should or could be done without having to start over from scratch?

Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?
HMS Thunder Child's avatar

Magical Girl

Ammo Amy
The Herald of War
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper?


You have to make me wonder if you're becoming some kind of parody. Because all he means is that the interpretation should remain the same as when it was written essentially. Interpretation should remain static and not account for new circumstances. This would, in fact, suggest there should be more amending to update it to allow for new meaning to be put in.

Very astute.

But how much amending should or could be done without having to start over from scratch?

Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?
[Earnest]

Presumably it would hurt our reputation of being the oldest constitutional republic.
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper? Why not start over from scratch? Isn't the Constitution something like the Bible of the United States? Is the Bible dead, too?


The Bible is even deader since we now know it's a bunch of plagiarism and lies written by a bunch of cultist forgers.

Ammo Amy
Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?


That's what I've been saying for years. It's the only real way to put the executive branch in its cage, end legislating from the bench, and ending minority rule in the Senate.
HMS Thunder Child
Ammo Amy
The Herald of War
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper?


You have to make me wonder if you're becoming some kind of parody. Because all he means is that the interpretation should remain the same as when it was written essentially. Interpretation should remain static and not account for new circumstances. This would, in fact, suggest there should be more amending to update it to allow for new meaning to be put in.

Very astute.

But how much amending should or could be done without having to start over from scratch?

Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?
[Earnest]

Presumably it would hurt our reputation of being the oldest constitutional republic.

You don't think the statements made by some of our Supreme Court Justices and politicians wanting to change it doesn't?

azulmagia
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper? Why not start over from scratch? Isn't the Constitution something like the Bible of the United States? Is the Bible dead, too?


The Bible is even deader since we now know it's a bunch of plagiarism and lies written by a bunch of cultist forgers.

And some still want to incorporate it as superseding the Constitution.

Quote:
Ammo Amy
Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?


That's what I've been saying for years. It's the only real way to put the executive branch in its cage, end legislating from the bench, and ending minority rule in the Senate.

That depends a lot. It seems that at least in the case of the Senate, the majority has ceded control to the minority once again. There's nothing in the Constitution about that.
The Herald of War's avatar

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Ammo Amy
The Herald of War
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper?


You have to make me wonder if you're becoming some kind of parody. Because all he means is that the interpretation should remain the same as when it was written essentially. Interpretation should remain static and not account for new circumstances. This would, in fact, suggest there should be more amending to update it to allow for new meaning to be put in.

Very astute.

But how much amending should or could be done without having to start over from scratch?

Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?


I'm not suggesting he's right, I'm saying you're really warping what he was saying. I think it'd be terribly inconvenient, needing to change what is supposed to be the fundamental framework of our government repeatedly. It's like trying to rebuild mess with your computer's hardware every time you install a new program. Much better to let it be interpreted anew given relevant new circumstances.
HMS Thunder Child's avatar

Magical Girl

Ammo Amy
HMS Thunder Child
Ammo Amy
The Herald of War
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper?


You have to make me wonder if you're becoming some kind of parody. Because all he means is that the interpretation should remain the same as when it was written essentially. Interpretation should remain static and not account for new circumstances. This would, in fact, suggest there should be more amending to update it to allow for new meaning to be put in.

Very astute.

But how much amending should or could be done without having to start over from scratch?

Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?
[Earnest]

Presumably it would hurt our reputation of being the oldest constitutional republic.

You don't think the statements made by some of our Supreme Court Justices and politicians wanting to change it doesn't?

azulmagia
Ammo Amy
Then why bother even interpreting and amending it if it's nothing but a dead piece of goddamn paper? Why not start over from scratch? Isn't the Constitution something like the Bible of the United States? Is the Bible dead, too?


The Bible is even deader since we now know it's a bunch of plagiarism and lies written by a bunch of cultist forgers.

And some still want to incorporate it as superseding the Constitution.

Quote:
Ammo Amy
Maybe write Constitution II: The Next Document?


That's what I've been saying for years. It's the only real way to put the executive branch in its cage, end legislating from the bench, and ending minority rule in the Senate.

That depends a lot. It seems that at least in the case of the Senate, the majority has ceded control to the minority once again.
[Informative]

I'm no constitutional lawyer, so I have no clue what constitutes semantics and what constitutes more.

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