The US Constitution should be read and interpreted as a living document
Debate Rounds (4)
The founders of the country, specifically those who wrote the Constitution, were nothing more than human. They were great men of their time, but they could not see in to the future. They knew that social and technological changes in the future were inevitable and made sure to explain their original intent while still allowing for interpretation by future generation who's environment would be drastically different than theirs.
Edmund Randolph was part of the "Committee Detail" in Philadelphia who gathered on June 23, 1787. He wrote the preamble of the committee's report stating:
In the draught of a fundamental constitution, two things deserve attention:
1. To insert essential principles only; lest the operations of government should be clogged by rendering those provisions permanent and unalterable, which ought to be accommodated to times and events: and
2. To use simple and precise language, and general propositions, according to the example of the constitutions of the several states.
Language such as this shows the desire of those who framed the Constitution to be a living document.
(I welcome all and anyone to this debate, but would hope that it is someone who lives inside the boarders of the United States and they have an understanding of the Constitution, thank you.)
When the Constitution was written it was intended that it could only be changed by means of Amendment, which is a deliberately difficult process. It must be interpreted according to original intent. If it is a living document then it allows for corruption.
" To insert essential principles only; lest the operations of government should be clogged by rendering those provisions permanent and unalterable, which ought to be accommodated to times and events."
Randolph was of the minority opinion that we needed a strong central government, he only signed on to what was agreed upon reluctantly as it granted less power than he would have liked.
"To use simple and precise language, and general propositions, according to the example of the constitutions of the several states." The Constitution is limited in its power and anything not stated is up to the states per the 10th Amendment or the people per the 9th Amendment. 
The idea was to grant negative rights as opposed to positive rights. It was meant to say what we have freedom to do but not force rights onto people. This distinction between positivity and negative rights is important in understanding the nature of the Constitution.
I await the next round and my opponent's response.
jonpistone2 forfeited this round.
jonpistone2 forfeited this round.
Though if he wouldn't mind, I would enjoy hearing his thoughts about the way the Constitution is interpreted in the modern day -- I realize amendments are used to add/change things in the writing. But its not realistic to expect an amendment to be made with each item of the fast changing technology. Each time there is a new form of technology, the government cannot be expected to vote on a new amendment. There has to be some form of interpretation. I would enjoy hearing how my opponent suggests the Constitution is used if there is no room for interpretation in our ever-changing life.
Thank you again to my opponent for posts and I apologize to him and others for this poor debate. It is the first and will likely be the last time I ever miss a round.
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