Using the United State's Constitution as a political soapbox has officially became tiresome. Yesterday, the Des Moines Register editorial staff [read: extremely liberal] wrote an opinion piece about the TSA's wiretapping and whether or not they are Constitutional.
Why is it that every time some organization or politician has a problem with their opponent's position on some issue, they have to start throwing around the Constitution? I mean, when did the Des Moines Register become such a defender of the Constitution? They hardly have problem with abortion, which they and most of their columnists support, yet you won't find a single word concerning women's reproductive rights in the Constitution [you can check my link on the right hand side of the blog if you don't believe me]. The Register has droned on for weeks now about the fundamental right of Americans to be granted health care. Of course, I need not point out the founding fathers made no mention of socialized medical care.
It is the selective use of the Constitution that bugs me. Whenever the Constitution contradicts your viewpoint, you merely trot out the tried and true response of: "well, the Constitution is a living document and is left up to interpretation by the founding fathers to be able to address issues unforeseen in their time."
Isn't that the irony though? Every argument is going to boil down to this exchange: "it's plainly stated in the Constitution" or "it's my understanding of the Constitution that it means something else." I believe it will probably always be that way and I guess on some level that is fine.
However, what I am tired of is the "holier than thou" attitude of those editorial staffs and politicians that wave the Constitution in your face every time they attack their opponents. Consider these quotes and passages:
"The Fourth Amendment prohibits the government from conducting random searches of the homes and papers of American citizens. Its words are unambiguous." [Des Moines Register 12/30/2005]
"The president, the vice president, the secretary of state, and the attorney general tell us that the president can order domestic spying inside this country -- without judicial oversight -- under his power as commander in chief. Really? Where do they find that in the Constitution?" [Sen. Ted Kennedy D-Ma 12/22/2005 op-ed Boston Globe]
Spare me the drama and state your case, or shut up and get down off the soapbox.
[exit In A Word, stepping off my soapbox]