For Constitutionalists Only!

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by PoliticalChic, Aug 19, 2009.

  1. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    1. When the Constitution was signed, there was some fear that it could lead to a repressive central government- so they passed the 10 amendments known as the Bill of Rights, basic rights to protect citizens against abuse by the federal government.

    2. But in America, there are two government: the federal, and the government of the state in which we live. The Bill of Rights only limits what the federal government can do to us; there are no protections against human and civil rights violations by state governments. And state laws are the ones that affect our lives much more directly: police matters, public works, real estate, auto regulations, domestic relations, wills, and civil lawsuits, among other aspects of daily life.

    3. After the Civil War, the Thirteenth Amendment was enacted to prohibit slavery. But in the South and in the North, state legislatures passed hundreds of laws discriminating against blacks, such as voting, holding office, using public facilities, testifying in court, etc.
    So Congress proposed the Fourteenth Amendment, which included: “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

    4. How is an amendment ratified? Article 5: “it does not become part of the Constitution unless it is ratified by three-quarters of the states (either the legislatures thereof, or in amendment conventions).”
    The requisite number of states (28) ratified it in 1868. Maybe.

    5. But-
    a. . When a fair vote was taken on it in 1865, in the aftermath of the Civil War, it was rejected by the Southern states and all the border states. Failing to secure the necessary three-fourths of the states, the Republican party, which controlled Congress, passed the Reconstruction Act of 1867 which placed the entire South under military rule (designed to remove with "Military force'' the lawfully constituted State Legislatures of the 10 Southern States), and they were ‘forced’ to ratify.

    b. The Joint Resolution proposing said amendment was not submitted to or adopted by a Constitutional Congress per Article I, Section 3, and Article V of the U. S. Constitution.

    c. The Joint Resolution was not submitted to the President for his approval as required by Article I, Section 7 of the U. S. Constitution.

    d. When the State of Louisiana rejected the 14th Amendment on February 6, 1867, making the 10th state to have rejected the same, or more than one fourth of the total number of 36 states of the Union as of that date, thus leaving less than three fourths of the states possibly to ratify the same, the Amendment failed of ratification in fact and in law, and it could not have been revived except by a new Joint Resolution of the Senate and House of Representatives in accordance with Constitutional requirement.

    e. Ohio and New Jersey-withdrew support after it was ratified.


    So, ladies and gentlemen of the jury:

    Was the Fourteenth Amendment legally and constitutionally ratified and enacted?

    And, what are the ramifications if it is ruled unconstitutional?
     
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  2. bodecea
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    bodecea Diamond Member

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    You bring up a very good constitutional question...has it ever been addressed in the Supreme Court?
     
  3. Ravi
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    Ravi Diamond Member

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    :confused:

    Congress didn't introduce it until June 13, 1866, so how was there a "fair vote" in 1865?
     
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  4. bodecea
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    bodecea Diamond Member

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    Oopsie!
     
  5. Kevin_Kennedy
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    Kevin_Kennedy Defend Liberty

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    There are a couple points to be made on this topic. Congress did not accept the "No" vote of the Confederate states in regards to the 14th Amendment and dissolved their governments, but they accepted their "Yes" vote to the 13th Amendment. If one was illegitimate then it stands to reason that both were illegitimate. Since the states had no governments and were denied representation in Washington how could they have ratified the 14th? They had to ratify the 14th to gain statehood, but not being states how could they legally do so?

    In response to the Reconstruction Acts President Andrew Johson said this:

    "Those who advocated the right of secession alleged in their own justification that we had no regard for law and that the rights of property, life, and liberty would not be safe under the Constitution as administered by us. If we now verify their assertion, we prove that they were in truth fighting for their liberty, and instead of branding their leaders as traitors against a righteous and legal government, we elevate them in history to the rank of self-sacrificing patriots, consecrate them to the admiration of the world, and place them by the side of Washington, Hampden, and Sidney."

    I would say the inherent contradictions that come up in the ratification of the 14th Amendment, and the fact that the southern states were forced to ratify against their will shows that the 14th Amendment was not legally ratified.
     
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  6. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    You are correct, it was sent to the states in '66.
     
  7. BasicGreatGuy
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    BasicGreatGuy Aut libertas aut mors

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    In my opinion, the XIV Amendment was not properly ratified.
     
  8. bodecea
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    bodecea Diamond Member

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    And how does the 14th amendment stand with the Supreme Court? Has anyone tried to seek a ruling on its constitutionality? After all, that is what the Supreme Court is for.
     
  9. BasicGreatGuy
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    BasicGreatGuy Aut libertas aut mors

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    To my knowledge, the SCOTUS has never directly addressed the issue. And to my knowledge, no suit has been filed and granted standing by the Court, that sought address of that direct issue.
     
  10. Ravi
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    Ravi Diamond Member

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    PC, not saying I doubt you, but why do you say the southern states were forced to ratify the amendment? In other words, link?
     

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