Pros and Cons of Con-Con – is a Constitutional Convention Dangerous? No one has proven a Convention of States would destroy or weaken the Constitution.

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Apr 29, 2014 1 Comment ›› admin

By Sid Frasier

Recently my wife and I attended a Tea Party meeting that was billed as a “debate” on the topic of Article 5 of the Constitution.

As you should know, Article 5 was a tool provided by the framers of the Constitution to alter or clarify the document should the federal government exceed its authority and/or need to be changed to protect this great nation. I don’t think anyone in attendance would have disagreed that we have clearly reached that point in the American evolution.

Actually, we seem to be operating under the premises outlined in the “Rules for Radicals” manifesto!

The signing of the Constitution (Photo: WhiteHouse.gov)

The signing of the Constitution (Photo: WhiteHouse.gov)

As I looked around the room, I saw approximately thirty people (a sad turnout for a topic of such importance).

I saw approximately 6 representatives from other Tea Party groups within a 60-mile radius of Central Texas and the majority of people could be classified as “Birchers” – members of the John Birch Society.

Bless their hearts to the two people chosen to present the “pro” and “con” statements. They were not polished presenters, so neither message was little more than a series of prepared statements as opposed to compelling and heartfelt arguments.

On one hand the “pro” spokesperson used a set of slides that were disorganized and more of a distraction than a clear presentation of concise information. On the “con” side the spokesperson read much of his presentation from sheets of paper that supported the John Birch Society teaching that the sky will fall if a “Con-Con” is held.

Here are the two basic premises:

Pro: The Constitution isn’t a prefect document. It has been altered and interpreted for the purpose of centralizing power by an enthroned congress whose intent is to expand its overreach and control rather than represent the people. Article 5 was a tool designed to give power to the people and restrict the federal government.

Con: The Constitution is a perfect document that should not be changed under any circumstances for fear of a runaway alteration of its basic principles. States should individually pass “nullification” legislation to change the things they do not like. It would make no difference if the Constitution were amended because Congress would ignore it.

What seemed somewhat ridiculous is a vote of the audience before the presentation and again after the presentations that led attendees to believe that 25 percent of the people in attendance actually switched their vote from “pro” to “con.”

There were cards passed around to pose questions of attendees, however out of the more than 15 cards, the moderator/leader indicated that only two were worthy of asking. I believe my question would have spurred a lot of thought, but it wasn’t deemed appropriate.

Video: Learn more about the Convention of States and Article V of the Constitution. Jim DeMint, former Senator from South Carolina, explains.

My question was simply: what proof do you have that a convention for the purpose of presenting amendments could be controlled or would it destroy the Constitution as claimed?

As I pondered my own question, I came to this conclusion: no one has proven a Convention of States would destroy or weaken the Constitution.

In fact, the process itself would send a strong message to the Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches that the people are serious about controlling the bureaucracy, corruption and financial mismanagement at the federal level.

There have indeed been states that are in the process of presenting their carefully structured and specifically worded applications to their state legislatures. In support of both arguments, it is a sad commentary about our education system that the people that will be affected the most are the least informed and least engaged.

Poorly attended meetings such as this are indicative of the apathy that has eroded our core principles and brought us to this point. As we watch and do nothing about preventing runaway government, things only get worse. The lack of leadership and the cronyism at every level of government cannot continue to be ignored. Discussions such as this are meaningless unless there are enough people to support any effort to correct the problems.

While I’ve made some harsh observations, they were not intended as personal in nature.

The Tea Party is under attack by establishment politicians from both the left and the right because they fear the message. In this politically correct world it seems everyone is a victim of something or another. The takeaway is that at least for now, we are still free to express our opinions and choose to participate or idly watch and complain within our own little worlds.

Do we write an epitaph or do we write a plan of action? That is the real question!

Sid Frasier is Local Coordinator for Tea Party Patriots in Central Texas

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Comments

  1. Sid says:

    This link is an followup to the meeting described above:
    http://www.teapartypatriots.org/article-v-symposium/week2/

    I recommend you take the time and listen closely as it lays out the pro and cons for the use of Article V. To be fair to the presenters of our local discussion… 10 minutes per side isn’t sufficient to layout the details.

    I encourage every American to take a pro active position and become an informed citizen. Suggest this link to your friends and family members… have each person listen carefully to both sides, form a discussion group of a few people and share you thoughts.

    Just think of the people power that could be generated if more people knew the facts.

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