New York Times op-ed calls for throwing out the Constitution

John C. writes:

Another development in the ongoing lynching of America 1.0. A constitutional law professor writes in the New York Times that we should ignore the Constitution. One of his arguments: There’s no reason to care what a group of propertied white racists from a few hundred years ago thought about anything.

LA replies:

I’ll have much more to say about this remarkable column, which is a completely logical development of liberalism/leftism now that it rules America. But I wanted to post the reader’s heads-up for the time being.

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Hannon writes:

Louis M. Seidman’s op-ed is a clear message from the playbook of modern liberalism. His main theme is the natural Good of Man, to which the Constitution is an imposition. Give us—not life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness—but the flexibility, tolerance and compromise of a dismembered Constitution. By the latter we will derive (and reshape as necessary, ad nauseam) the former. Incredibly, at the same time he acknowledges “that much constitutional language is broad enough to encompass an almost infinitely wide range of positions.” So the Constitution has served us well in spite of itself?

“This is not to say that we should disobey all constitutional commands. Freedom of speech and religion, equal protection of the laws and protections against governmental deprivation of life, liberty or property are important, whether or not they are in the Constitution. We should continue to follow those requirements out of respect, not obligation.”

” … whether or not they are in the Constitution”. In other words, these “important features” simply exist in universal human thought and would exist, even flourish, outside of man’s laws. That they are enshrined in the Constitution somehow imposes an obligation to discern those ideas that are essential to our freedom and happiness, which would otherwise materialize ipso facto. How many Americans today have any sense of obligation in this regard? If such principles are merely “important” to Seidman, what societal principles does he consider indispensable or inviolate, if any?

Countries like Britain and New Zealand have systems of parliamentary supremacy and no written constitution, but are held together by longstanding traditions, accepted modes of procedure and engaged citizens. We, too, could draw on these resources.

He doesn’t say just which “longstanding traditions, accepted modes of procedure” he is referring to. This, together with “engaged citizens”, almost sounds quaint by modern standards. Does it occur to him that Britain is a social and cultural disaster zone? Maybe a pastoral community of wholesome white Christians tending their flocks in New Zealand is what he has in mind? Or perhaps the harmony of a squalid black ghetto ringed by white flight suburbia, with a Latino annex across the tracks?

No obligations here, just respect. What could be more liberating?


Paul T. writes:

I admit that when I saw the author’s name, I thought “Right. Louis Seidman. It would have to be a Louis Seidman, wouldn’t it? As opposed to, say, a Frank O’Malley.”

Which of course is not literally true. The column could have been written by an O’Malley. And liberalism is not worse when practiced by Jews, liberalism is liberalism. But then, crime is no worse when committed by blacks. It’s just that a disturbing number of blacks commit crimes, and a disturbing number of Jews are liberals. And then the really uncomfortable question springs to my mind: If I hadn’t been born Jewish, would I be something of an anti-Semite, albeit a mild one? and I have to say that yes, I expect I would be. One is simply worn down by the endless profusion of Jewish subversives, in the same way one is worn down by the endless profusion of black criminals. Sometimes it really is appropriate to be ashamed of one’s family. If you’ve any thoughts on this, I’d be interested to hear them.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 01, 2013 11:04 AM | Send

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