Blog correspondent Len Ornstein can always be relied upon for an understanding of constitutional principles, as well as a little historical context for a lot of the debates we see in the headlines and in our Facebook feeds.
He’s advised me more than once to peruse the website of the Bill of Rights Institute. I’m glad he did. It’s an outstanding resource for all things constitutional — divided into online and downloadable resources for students and teachers. To me, it seems like a great educational resource for anybody, though — not just those in a school setting. If nothing else, it will inform your position the next time you are arguing with that darn liberal or that darn conservative.
Visit the Bill of Rights Institute right here:
“The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”
Even putting aside the obvious equality issues, you have to wonder about the mindset of those who try so hard to determine what is NOT a right.
Like people who like to examine the Constitution only to point out what is NOT explicitly included (such as the right of privacy, for example). What kind of instincts motivate them? They seem to painfully misunderstand the very purpose of the Bill of Rights. I’m paraphrasing the wonderful writer Peter David here — one of his columns excellently explained that the Constitution is meant to preserve and expand rights, and not to limit them.
Isn’t the Ninth Amendment supposed to confer all reasonably expected rights that are not included elsewhere in the document? It is there because the Founding Fathers knew that other fundamental rights, not explicitly spelled out in the Bill of Rights, could come under attack.
This ad is logically rickety, as well. Voting or publishing a newspaper are also “behaviors.” They are also rights, aren’t they? And … isn’t heterosexuality also a “behavior?”
Anyway, look at the half-concealed, squirrelly-looking man depicting a gay person. This is cheap, ugly, obvious propaganda targeting a harmless minority. This isn’t something we should expect to see in 21st century America.
It carries the stink of mid-twentieth century Berlin.