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Do We Deserve Our Constitution Any Longer?

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Message John De Herrera
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I’d love to know who here really really cares anymore about what’s happening, because when you no longer care about something, you simply no longer deserve it.


Having watched C-SPAN, and having listened to callers express outrage over the recent actions of the U.S. Congress, and looking through the Diaries on the Rec List here and at other sites, any visitor to our small planet might conclude we American citizens no longer deserve our Constitution.


If you really do care about the U.S. Constitution, that would mean you’d be willing to do something in its defense. We all know lip service and action are two different things. So if you do care, or you think you still care, please allow me to explain some things about our Supreme Law, and what can be done to prevent it from being ignored any longer.


In life, we know there are two types of Opinion: objective and subjective. Objective opinion is based on what we clearly know to be true, i.e. the facts. Subjective opinion is based on what is true for us individually. As it happens, the Constitution is also divided into these two categories. The objective aspect is its seven articles, or its Structural Law. The subjective aspect is its twenty-seven amendments, or its Civil Law. You can debate all day and forever about what 28th Amendment would best serve the U.S.A. today, but there’s no debating how such an amendment is to be proposed and ratified.


It should be clear that the 110th U.S. Congress has failed to protect and defend the U.S. Constitution. The vote on FISA is but one example in a long list (and if you think that list is at an end, I’d suggest it’s just beginning). The Constitution provides exactly two ways to propose change for the union: Congress or Convention. And if there are two ways to get something done, and one is out of commission, what do you do?


When we examine the convention clause of Article V, at first glance, it appears there are many unanswered questions. How is such a convention to be convoked and convened? Once convoked, what happens? Once convened, what happens?


Due to recent legal history, it’s been determined that it’s up to the politicians in Congress to decide whether this nation shall ever hold a federal convention. In other words--and there are current members on record stating this--as soon as there is genuine interest in utilizing this aspect of the Constitution, the Congress will act.


Many people fear an Article V Convention, because they are ignorant in their belief that it’s the same thing as a constitutional convention. This is incorrect. A constitutional convention is for the purpose of writing and proposing a constitution, whereas an Article V Convention is for writing and proposing amendments to our U.S. Constitution. Citizens who cannot make this critical distinction between a constituional convention and an Article V Convention are what we call stupid, i.e. lacking intelligence.

Whichever convention you’re talking about, it’s important to keep in mind that discussing and writing new law is not the same thing as ratifying new law. Ratification requires a certain amount of approval before a proposed law has any effect.


If you--yes you--believe that "voting" new legislators into the Congress to replace those who have failed the Constitution will make things right again, then your credibility as an American is questionable. The U.S. Congress is and has been compromised by corporate and special interests for one, and secondly, due to a hodge podge of electronic voting machines, we can no longer be sure as to the accuracy of any said "election."


For those who care, I suggest you put your money where your mouth is. I’d like to think there are enough apart of this community willing to co-produce a feature documentary which could and would create the interest required to coerce a convention call out of the U.S. Congress.

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Writer/artist/activist from California, with a degree in Creative Studies from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Advocating for the convention clause of Article V since 2001.

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