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The Founding Fathers

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press

Judges on the federal level do not have to run for reelection or worry about getting reappointed after serving a finite term. This helps minimize the influence of politics on the judicial branch, thus increasing the likelihood that the parties involved would get a fair trial. However, when the Kelo vs. New London case came about, I emailed my Congressman proposing an amendment to the Constitution that would allow Congress to overturn a Supreme Court decision with a three-fourths vote in the Senate and House of Representatives (I figured this was fair since, with three-fourths required, the Supreme Court would still be very influential, since overriding it would be even harder than overriding a presidential veto). When my Congressman responded, he said "But passing this amendment would cause a huge structural change in the federal government. This is not what our Founding Fathers intended."

This makes me think: Why do we think of the Founding Fathers as these supermortals who can do no wrong? Sure they made a Constitution that has lasted over two hundred years, but that wasn't accomplished without compromise and intense debate. They were just as lucky as they were educated (keep in mind from history class back in school, they were far more educated than the typical American at that time; more than half were college graduates), and they get more prestige and fame than God himself. Why?
 

democraticandidate

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While some time has passed since you've posted this, I think you do bring up some valid concerns. Just guessing, but I'd say that your congressman feels that the checks and balances already in place are sufficient enough. Allowing 3/4ths to overrule a court decision would harm decisions that would create a precedent would it not? I guess that a Brown vs. Board of Ed. type of decision would really have some trouble as what is legally right, often times isn't right politically. I do agree that some decisions are horrendous, but the power to confirm or deny a potential justice a seat on the court is a powerful weapon in its own right. Whether or not the members of the legislative branch choose to make it so is a different subject!.:smile:
 
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press

democraticandidate said:
While some time has passed since you've posted this, I think you do bring up some valid concerns. Just guessing, but I'd say that your congressman feels that the checks and balances already in place are sufficient enough. Allowing 3/4ths to overrule a court decision would harm decisions that would create a precedent would it not? I guess that a Brown vs. Board of Ed. type of decision would really have some trouble as what is legally right, often times isn't right politically. I do agree that some decisions are horrendous, but the power to confirm or deny a potential justice a seat on the court is a powerful weapon in its own right. Whether or not the members of the legislative branch choose to make it so is a different subject!.:smile:
whatever you say, but can we get back on the topic I tried to start: About the founding fathers?
 

democraticandidate

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press said:
whatever you say, but can we get back on the topic I tried to start: About the founding fathers?
Perhaps I answered it in a roundabout way. With that being said, I think that we view the founders as of being more than mortal in that the system they created is still good, even with the problems that we have. If you have the 3/4ths thing with congress, you have the interjecteing of politics into what should be a judicial branch concerned about impartiality and interpreting the law. Who is to say that in ten years the roles won't be reversed? Would you still maintain that the 3/4ths idea would be good? Would precedent decisions not be threatened? The founders original ideas are deeply respected because while new proposals have some merit-they have one thing the founders ideas didn't--politics!.
 
P

press

maybe, but I still think that the Constitution is not without flaw. I mean come on, it has been amended twenty-seven times. That's more than even my own state constitution, which has only been amended eight times (if you're ever skeptical about that, look at the Mississippi Constitution). If it had not been amended once in its entire existence, then maybe I'd respect the founding fathers more.

Besides, it's not like they invented democracy. Other attempts at republican government were attempted in Europe before the United States came about. Take the Shakespear play Julius Ceasar for example. These democracies were overpowered by the popular opinion of foolish citizens who were too uneducated to know what was best for them, and the government collapsed. The Fouding Fathers knew of these failures and corrected the faults, but that's only because they were educated.

An example of a flaw I think is in the Constitution that hasn't been solved, you ask? For one, the Senate. When the Constitution was first written, it made sense for the Senate to serve six year terms, since most of the people in that time were not educated enough to know what was best for them, so they made the House of Representatives serve two year terms and elected directly by the people so the people would have a strong say in that sense by quickly replacing bad Congressmen, but gave the people a weak say when they made the Senate not have to worry about reelection for a long time, not to mention that the legislatures originally chose Senators, so the legislators would know if the Senators had screwed up before the people did.

Now, however, most people are much more educated than they were in 1788, and as such, more people know what is best for them, so why hell is the Senate still as isolated from popular opinion like it is?! I know that the people now elect Senators, but Senators can still make a few controversial decisions and still remain popular because they have time to make up for it with popular decisions. That's something that the Founding Fathers didn't see coming, now was it? As such, they are not perfect, as so many people consider them.
 

-Demosthenes-

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press said:
If it had not been amended once in its entire existence, then maybe I'd respect the founding fathers more.
Because it's been amended? It was meant to be amended, the amending process is the majority of article 5.

press said:
The Fouding Fathers knew of these failures and corrected the faults, but that's only because they were educated.
What's wrong with being educated, they solved almost all of the problems with democracy in the Constitution, and allowed for ways for them to be solved in the future.

No one thinks that they are perfect, they just made one of the most efficient and long lasting governments in history is all.
 
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