Re: Happy Bill of Rights Day — The Problem with the Fourteenth Amendment

Norman Singleton is correct to note that “the Bill of Rights may have contributed to the growth of the state by enshrining the notion that the government could do anything so long as it did not violate one of the rights explicitly protected in the Bill of Rights, in place of the original intent to limit the government to those functions explicitly granted it in the main body of the Constitution.”

Not only that, but the Bill of Rights, which was originally intended to limit the scope of the federal government and to reinforce the idea that the federal government was one of strictly enumerated powers (as opposed to having general police power, like the states), has not only been ignored selectively by the federal government in limiting its own power (e.g., federal gun laws and federal economic regulations such as the minimum wage)–and even worse, the Bill of Rights has perversely been used by the federal government as a grant of power over the states, thanks to outrageous interpretations of the Fourteenth Amendment. Discussions of abuse of the Fourteenth Amendment–even by some libertarians–can be found in these articles and posts:


1:10 am on December 16, 2004