Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Principled grandstanding

Sen. James Risch (R-Idaho) was on All Things Considered yesterday talking about the threat that 13 senators have made to filibuster any attempt to put gun control legislation up for a vote. Sen. Risch said he is adamantly opposed to any legislation that might infringe upon the right of the citizenry to keep and bear arms.

It is heartwarming to see our legislators so concerned about the protections afforded up in the Bill of Rights. Can you even begin to imagine the impact such a demonstration would have on the Fourth Amendment? What a sight it would be to see a group of senators doing everything in their power to protect the constitutional rights of the accused? 

Such a force could even be powerful enough to persuade the Supreme Court that the Fourth Amendment means what it says and that further efforts to stretch the meanings of words aren't acceptable. Even the nine wearing robes stick their fingers up to see which way the wind is blowing every once in a while, you know.

And imagine what they could do to make the promise of Gideon a reality. 

Oh, what the hell am I thinking? They don't give a rat's ass about the rights of anyone who doesn't pump wads of cash into their campaigns. Their concern over the Second Amendment is grandstanding - they haven't the slightest care in the world about the Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Amendments. 

If these senators would take the same position on any legislation that infringed upon the constitutional rights of the citizenry I would give them a thumbs up for their principled stands. That would, of course, assume that they are capable of taking a principled stand on any issue.

It speaks volumes about the state of our politics that folks are more concerned about the possibility it may be harder to buy a gun in the future than they are about the steady erosion of their privacy rights by judges who are more concerned about putting the bad guy away than they are about ensuring the government doesn't overstep its bounds.

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