Monday, September 27, 2010

Constitution Lesson

A little less than a couple weeks ago was Constitution Day, the anniversary of the signing of the Constitution.  As I was picking up lunch (a two out of three patriotic red Thai curry on white rice, as apparently "blue" is not a dish), they were giving away free pocket versions of the US Constitution.  "Hell yeah," I thought, "this should come in handy should I need to whip out some Constitutional knowledge."  Well, today's the day.

Everyone knows the warm and cuddly figure known as Ann Coulter.  You know, the tall, blonde super-Republican who highlights how not easy on the eyes Rush Limbaugh is in in any kind of lighting.

Cuddly if you're a praying mantis or a Nosferatu.
Recently, Ann Coulter got invited to Homocon (I am not kidding -- click on the link), a convention for homosexual conservatives.  Coulter got touted as "the right wing Judy Garland."  From what I've gathered on Judy Garland as a gay icon, that's pretty high praise.  I'm still waiting on being named a "Bruce Lee keynote speaker" designation.  Hell, I'd settle for the "Judge Ito Appreciation Award."  These guys are still searching for a "Hunter S. Thompson Literary Honor" designation.

Inviting her soon backfired, much like having Marion Barry at a seminar on corruption free government.  She soon decided that instead of saying "go gay GOP-ers!" or something like that she decided to let the crowd know how thankful she was for the totally spitting on it and grinding it under her stilettos made out of the charred bones of cute bunnies and shined with the tears of children.

"One of history's liberal diversity lovers" -- Ann Coulter (unsubstantiated)
Besides the other ridiculous points she made (like how kindergarten-level kids would learn about fisting), perhaps the most ridiculous point was that the 14th Amendment only applied to black people.  That's it.  Only  black people.  Not gays, women, other ethnic minorities, other minorities period...just black people.

Well, now that I have my handy-dandy pocket US Constitution and while it's still in its non-coffee-stained edition, I can go look it up.  One second...

[insert rifling through pocket filled with old receipts and gum wrappers]

...okay, here's the actual text for your own perusal (I'll provide a link if you don't believe me)

Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
Section 2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State.
Section 3. No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may, by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.
Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.
Section 5. The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article. it refers to slaves, who were black, it doesn't exactly discriminate in terms of color, race, creed, ethnicity.  Hell, it doesn't even technically discriminate in terms of citizenship.  Note that it refers to "persons" and not "citizens."  So you didn't even have to be a citizen to receive the protections of the clause, a handy phrase in the amendment when being a naturalized citizen of the United States was pretty much damn near impossible.
You can touch my underpants, but you're not getting citizenship.
For the record, the Amendment has helped not only blacks but also Chinese-Americans (Yick Wo v. Hopkins, United States v. Wong Kim Ark), Hispanic-Americans (Hernandez v. Texas), women (United States v. Virginia -- women's admissions to VMI), illegitimate children (Levy v. Louisiana), people of different races who want to get married (Loving v. Virginia), and family people in general (Nevada Department of Human Resources v. Hibbs).  Family member rights!  Isn't the Republican Party all about "family values?  (List of some of the cases where the 14th Amendment has been citied...for better and worse.)

Now either the Supreme Court might've applied it incorrectly all these years (Plessy v. Ferguson, pretty much any WWII ruling involving Japanese people), but I'm pretty sure there's not hidden "blacks-only" clause within the 14th Amendment.  And really, that would pretty much defeats the purpose of the 14th Amendment.  It's like claiming the Alien and Sedition Acts enacted by John Adams were backed by the 1st Amendment or the dance your suspect did with "Mr. Billy Club" was totally 8th Amendment approved.

(Note: I know that women got left out, but they got the vote...eventually.  I'll give you that one.  But you got into VMI because of the 14th Amendment, right?)

Plus, I can imagine that it's pretty ludicrous that one would get up in front of a crowd of people and tell them that not only do they have no rights under one of the more important amendments of the US Constitution whey they not only specifically honored you with an invitation but also put you on their damned promo graphic.  Really, Ann Coulter?  Really?  Do you have any sense of modesty?  Or are you some sort of harpy who subsists on any sort of publicity?
Sketch of Ann Coulter.