Is the Constitution still relevant?

If you missed my segment on The Chris Salcedo Show this morning – or if you just have to hear it again – here is the clip:

Just saying that the Constitution isn’t relevant because it’s old is an extraordinarily weak argument.  Ideas and concepts don’t age or expire unless the conditions that they were based on change in some way.

For example, we have a formula for calculating how fast an object will fall if you drop it.  But no one would argue that we should stop using that formula just because it was discovered a long time ago.  Gravity still exists and objects still fall at the same speed they did 100 years ago.  So that formula is still 100% relevant – even though it’s old.

The same is true with the Constitution.  It was designed to deal with human nature.  The Founders were trying to figure out how to protect the citizens of this country from the government because they knew people had a tendency to be greedy, to be selfish, to be corrupted by power, etc.  Today, human nature is no different – human beings still tend to be greedy, selfish, and get corrupted by power.  So the conditions that the Constitution was based have not changed.

If the critics of our Constitution want to argue that our founding document is outdated and irrelevant, they need to explain exactly which part no longer applies.  Should we get rid of the separation of powers because people in today’s world aren’t corrupted by power?  Should we stop expecting members of Congress to live under the laws they pass because people are no longer selfish?  Which of these mechanisms for protecting us from the government are no longer relevant in today’s world?

Any claims that our Constitution is broken simply because it’s old are just plain silly.  As we seen very clearly in recent years, we need protection from the greediness, selfishness, and power-hungriness of our politicians now more than ever.  If there’s anything broken with our Constitution today, it’s our failure to apply it.

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