Fair-Weather Originalists:  Be Careful What You Wish For

Fair-Weather Originalists: Be Careful What You Wish For

14th Amendment, 9-11, activism, autonomy, awareness, bigotry, Challenge, Change, citizenship, civics, conservatism, Consitution, critical judgment, culture, Equality, Executive Order, faithfulness, Fascism, First Amendment, Ideology, injustice, law, Muslims, peace and justice, political rhetoric, Politics, Presidency, racism, Rationality, Religion, Religious War, Secularity, social justice, Supreme Court, terrorism, Tolerance, Trump, Uncategorized, World Trade Center
Sometimes I think history has a wicked sense of humor.  The latest example of history-as-harlequin may be seen by observing the rhetorical, jurisprudential, and logical contortions of people attempting to defend President Trump’s executive orders (EOs) on immigration before, in this latest case, the 4th Circuit.  Most of the people defending Trump’s EOs – EO 13769 and its siblings – are employing the language, tactics, and presuppositions of original meaning, a common approach of conservative / “strict constructionist” jurists and constitutional scholars. To them:  the key question of how to interpret any given text of the Constitution or statutory law is to adhere to the original meaning of the law’s authors as expressed in the original language of the law itself.  In order for the la