The Liberal Conservative Examines The Bill Of Rights, Part X

All kind-of-okay things must come to an end. Welcome to the final part of the Liberal Conservative’s look at the Bill of Rights. This…is Part Ten!

If you’re just joining us and would like to play a bit of catch-up, then click here to view parts 1-9 and/or check out all things Liberal Conservative. Also, links to each previous edition of the Liberal Conservative’s Bill Of Rights series can be found at the bottom of this piece. As usual, the L.C. comes to you courtesy of Liberal America. Now, on with the show!

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

The Tenth Amendment. When this state isn’t busy conjuring up slight disagreements between the States and the U.S. Government, it’s being used by folks like Ron Paul to explain why things like marijuana should be legal. Okay, so it’s used for more sharp debate on things like gay marriage and abortion.

This is a case, folks, where the states’ rights people – such as myself – are absolutely right. See, back in the days of the American Civil War the Confederacy wasn’t fighting in the name of slavery. Make no mistake, they wanted it. They wanted it bad. The real issue at play was states’ rights. Those in charge of the southern states were upset that the U.S. Government was acting a little bit “heavy-handed” and by 1860 the anti-slavery Republican Party – not to confused with Ted Cruz’s Republican Party or even Ronald Reagan’s Republican Party – had taken control of the House, Senate, and – you guessed it – White House. While states’ rights were of primary concern this did materialize itself as the slavery debate. When Lincoln was elected several states succeeded followed by even more early the following year both before and after Lincoln’s inauguration. Fortunately, we all know how that turned out: that silly bunch of Confederate geese lost.

Now, that’s where historical perception of states’ rights and contemporary perception of states’ rights greatly differs. Slavery deals with human rights – people being subjugated, beaten, tortured, etc. – while things like gay rights and abortion aren’t human rights issues. They’re civil rights issues. Calm, down, Liberals! It doesn’t make them any less important to the United States of America.

Domestic human rights issues – like slavery where innocent people are treated in such degrading, poor fashion – belongs squarely to the U.S. Federal Government – henceforth to be referred to as the “Big G”, because it entertains me. Civil rights issues…can go either way…

See, chances are you’re now thinking of the Civil Rights Movement and I don’t blame you. It has “civil rights” right in the title for crying out loud! The issue is this: homosexuals in the U.S. can enjoy the luxury of voting just like anybody else. So can women who have had an abortion and those who were party to it. If they didn’t have that privilege, then the Big G should absolutely step in. Businesses not hiring someone based on sexual orientation? Pretty major case of discrimination, therefore the Big G should step in and make it right.

The debacle comes from this simple fact: marriage is nowhere in the U.S. Constitution. Sure, it may be in the Bible once or twice, but let’s not forget that the Holy Bible has no place in any form of U.S. Government; and, even if you want to force feed your peers your favorite fairy tale, there’s the fact that the Bible does not define marriage as only between one man and one woman. Polygamy was hugely embraced by Biblical figures like Abraham while the great holy book also claims that a rape victim must wed her attacker. Classy, Christianity. Real classy.

So marriage isn’t in the Constitution. What does that mean? Let’s revisit that Tenth Amendment for a moment…

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

If it isn’t in the Constitution or Bill of Rights that the Big G can regulate marriage, then said right belongs to the States. Never mind that bit at the end “…or to the people.” Why? Because this is about law and regulation: government territory. Therefore, once more: if it isn’t in the Constitution or Bill of Rights that big government can regulate marriage, then said right belongs to the state governments.

So, How Does This Amen- wait!

Abortion. Where does this leave abortion? Let’s take a look…

Earlier I asserted that abortion was a civil rights issue, rather than a human rights issue. Perhaps I was bit…quick on the trigger there. Abortion is probably even more divisive than gay marriage in the United States. I want very badly to call this one a civil rights issue, but can I? After all, the big issue at play here is that outlawing abortion would lead to poor women’s healthcare at the hands of back alley abortionists. This can cause serious injury or even death and who the heck would want that besides fringe lunatics like former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum? Healthcare I stated in a previous article was open to Big G interpretation and care seeing as the United States is a democratic republic – a government by the people, for the people. So…abortion falls under the guidance and care of the Big G after all!

You see that? I included that for one reason: to show how the world totally doesn’t end if you’re proven wrong and thus change your mind on something. Karl Rove would call that “flip-flopping“. Then again, Karl Rove is the personification of snake oil. (Side note: My views on Karl Rove do not necessarily represent those of Liberal America. Then again, maybe they do. I don’t know. You’ll have to ask them.)

So, How Does This Amendment Apply To Modern America?

It does. Very much so. Fourteen states plus the District of Columbia have legalized gay marriage. You’ll notice that the Big G has nothing to do with that. Gay marriage is a states’ rights issue. States that look like they may never legalize it – such as Mississippi – should be given a stern talking to and have it explained to them that you can’t “catch gay” by being near a gay man.

Even still, the fact that it has been left to the States’ discretion is proof positive that the Tenth Amendment is alive and well. Abortion, meanwhile, should no longer be considered strictly a civil rights issue. Proper healthcare ought to be considered a human rights issue – at the very least in the United States – and thus abortion falls under federal territory. Legalize it. Regulate it. Keep our women safe and healthy. And – most importantly – vote Wendy Davis, Texas!

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And so the Liberal Conservative’s look at the Bill of Rights has come to an end. I hope you enjoyed it and keep a look out, because next month I’m going to do something that Democrats and Republcans alike will both love and hate. I’ll be looking at President Barack Obama’s campaign for and first term as U.S. President in a five-part series entitled President Obama: Hero And Villain.

The Liberal Conservative Examines The Bill Of Rights
Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, Part VII, Part VIII, Part IX

Edited/Published by: SB

I'm Jonathan Lenhardt; fiscally conservative, socially liberal Republican. I'm pro-choice, pro-2nd Amendment, anti-Tea Party, and happily atheist just to name a sparse few things about me. You can direct all hate mail to [email protected] Also, you can find me on Google+, Twitter (@JonLenTheLC), and I have an L.C.-specific Facebook page (Jonathan Lenhardt, The Liberal Conservative).