Define "unconstitutional"

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on January 7, 2008

If this is how they "think," then I wouldn't trust any of the members of The New York Times editorial board to edit an eye chart. Check out today's editorial on a Supreme Court case to determine whether or not lethal injection is a cruel and unusual punishment, banned by the Eighth Amendment. (Orin Kerr of the Volokh Conspiracy has a good summary of the arguments here.)

What's the Times' editorial board's argument?

We believe that the death penalty, no matter how it is administered, is unconstitutional and wrong.

I might have a recurring feature. "The New York Times defines...unconstitutional:" Anything we don't like.

Seriously, you've got to be a upper Manhattan liberal to read the constitution and come to the conclusion that the death penalty is unconstitutional. The Fifth Amendment clause "No person ... shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law...." apparently doesn't exist in the abridged version of the constitution found in the Times' offices.

Argue that the death penalty is morally wrong and that it should be abolished, but don't say that it is unconstitutional, because it isn't.

0 comments on “Define "unconstitutional"”

  1. Several things.
    1. Having to read the drivel in the NYT is cruel and unusual punishment. Please do not force me to read those links. (I know, I know, you can't copy entire stories...blah, blah, blah.)

    2. My favorite quote was by Justice Scalia. "This is an execution, not surgery, Where does this come from, that . . . in the execution of a person who has been convicted of killing people we must choose the least painful method possible? Is that somewhere in our Constitution?" Amen.

    3. In the WaPo, "Those objecting to the process said it would be better to inject inmates with a single, massive dose of barbiturates, the way animals are euthanized." - Ok. That works for me. Let us move forward now that both sides agree.

    4. Because the liberals like the NYT that like to characterize our Constitution as a "living and breathing document", they can then claim anything is unconstitutional. This mentality will eventually lead to a Constitution that only in name remains the same as originally written by our founding fathers.
    "We must confine ourselves to the powers described in the Constitution, and the moment we pass it, we take an arbitrary stride towards a despotic Government."
    -- James Jackson, member of the First Congress


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January 2008



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