Constitutional Interpretation of Checks and Balances

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Constitutional Interpretation of Checks and Balances The problem of interpreting the Constitution and framer’s intent is a constantly permeating and troublesome question in the minds of Supreme Court Justices, judges, prominent politicians, and policy makers alike. It is a problem that has been pondered for years and years in the courtrooms and on paper with no real conclusion. One such essay arguing this dilemma is “How Not to Read the Constitution” by Laurence H. Tribe and Michael C. Dorf, who explore the questions “Is reading the text just a pretext for expressing the reader’s vision in the august, almost holy terms of constitutional law?” and “Is the Constitution simply a mirror in which one sees what one wants to see?” (Tribe, 49). While Tribe and Dorf begin their article with a seemingly unbiased opinion on the subject, by the end of the essay it is quite clear that the authors believe in the United States Constitution as a living document which is vulnerable to interpretation and changes with the times. There is much research citing evidence which both supports and argues against the idea that the Constitution can be freely interpreted to adjust to modern society. Neither of the two sides have very solid, concrete arguments. The supports are all very porous and can be easily attacked by the other side. Therefore, there is no right answer to the question of Constitutional interpretation. In order to understand the topic at hand, one must first have a firm grasp on the original framing of the Constitution. The Constitution was written in a time of national turmoil. Bankruptcy and hunger were rampant throughout the country. The Articles of Confederation, written in 1781, proved to be a failure and the politicia... ... middle of paper ... ... and disadvantages. Neither side is “without it warts” as Justice Scalia is fond of saying (Singer 15). The non-originalist point of view is widely accepted in society, but that still does not mean that the originalist point of view is incorrect. Supporters of the living Constitution say that the Constitution is vague, but they just might not fully understand the original intent of the framers. Even though the framers could never comprehend modern issues and technology, the Constitution gives enough information to decide these cases. This is the main problem with the ongoing argument about whether or not, or how the Constitution should be interpreted. As one can see from above, there is a valid response against each argument. This topic will continue to be discussed for some time to come without resolve, until it eventually becomes invalid to even discuss it.
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