Originalism, Strict Constructionism, Free Interpretationism

The title of this piece gives the names of three ways of viewing the Constitution of the United States. The first two are closely related while the third is a new and very liberal manner of viewing and interpreting that fundamental document. There is a certain portion of the populace that really doesn’t care as long as the freebies keep flowing. We will take these up later. For now let’s concentrate on the three topics enumerated in the title.
Just what is ‘Originalism’? This is the view of the constitution that believes the constitution means exactly what it says and should be viewed and enforced with that in mind. After all it was enacted by a super-majority of the voters at the time it was enacted as was each of the amendments. That is a very cogent and strong case for this view.
Strict Constructionism is closely aligned with that view with the exception of a few caveats. Those caveats are supposedly based on common sense. A couple of examples would be that the first amendment gives each of us freedom of speech, but that doesn’t mean that we have the right to shout fire in a crowded building. The second amendment gives us the right to bear arms and that right “… shall not be infringed”. Most believe that some of the exceptions here would be people convicted of crimes of violence and/or the criminally insane. The list goes on.
Free Interpretationism is the view that the Constitution was written so many years ago that it no longer applies to our society in many cases and therefore needs to be interpreted in light of modern society. This gives rise to the Department of Homeland Security believing they have the power, in deed, the duty to suspend the fourth amendment against illegal search and seizure at their whim. They have declared a one hundred mile zone around every border as being a fourth amendment free zone when it comes to cell phones and computers. Sometimes even luggage and persons. This is a view supported by the liberal element of our country and the so-called ‘low information voters’.
So which are you? It is time to decide folks. This next election is a very important one for our country. Do you want more of the Free Interpretationism in government? Are you longing for the days when the constitution was enforced without any interpretation or do you believe in the so-called ‘common sense’ rule of law. What is our country to become? Are we a country that guarantees of freedom of religion? One that “… is endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights …”? Does the second amendment statement that the “… legislature shall make no law establishing a religion …” mean that no government entity or government funded activity may mention or portray religious symbolism much less mention any Christian belief or figure such as God or Jesus?
As for me, I am a strict constructionist and very proud to be one. Our Constitution is sacred to me as it is to many of the America people. I just hope enough of them show up at the poles in November and help me turn this country from a heading toward federal government tyranny back to the freedom loving country I was born to.


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