Constitution Day 2015

Eliminating birthright citizenship… It implies a reckless urge to break down ancient legal principles without inquiring why those traditions existed in the first place.

Close up of the Constitution of the United States of America with quil feather pen
Close up of the Constitution of the United States of America with quill feather pen
Constitution Day is tomorrow, so I found some articles from the previous 12 months, pulling out quotes, to commemorate it. I suggest you read the whole articles.

Civics For Dummies: Judicial Review
People who dislike particular court rulings often imagine that this power of judicial review wasn’t in the Founders’ original vision at all; somewhere along the line the Supreme Court just usurped it. But in fact the Founders foresaw judicial review and approved.

How the NRA Rewrote the Second Amendment
“‘One loves to possess arms’ wrote Thomas Jefferson, the premier intellectual of his day, to George Washington on June 19, 1796.” What a find! Oops Continue reading “Constitution Day 2015”

K is for Killing

The current debate over gun violence likely will not be ended so easily.

My church, First Presbyterian Church in Albany, NY, is celebrating its 250th anniversary this year. The church donated some artifacts to the Albany Institute of History & Art, itself founded in 1791. The Institute has an exhibit, ongoing through April 17, showing some of the church history over the years.

Some of the church members included John Jay, eventually the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court; Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury; and Aaron Burr, third Vice-President of United States, and the first NOT to go on to become President.

After Burr killed Hamilton in a duel in 1804, Continue reading “K is for Killing”

Another day, another mass shooting

After President Reagan was nearly assassinated in March 1981, there was a “commonsense” limit on assault weapons, but that law lapsed nearly a decade ago.

When I first heard about the mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, it wasn’t until about noon on Friday, December 14, a couple hours after the horrific event. After lunch, I spent about three hours listening to the online reporting, first on NBC News, then ABC News. I figured if I kept following it, perhaps I’d discover they’d gotten it wrong. And they had – it wasn’t 18 dead children, it was 20. The wrong brother was initially named as the shooter. The basic framework, though, remained terribly the same.
Continue reading “Another day, another mass shooting”