The U.S. Constitution is a remarkable and groundbreaking document. It was written in 1787 by our founding fathers under some difficult circumstances (and using quill pens instead of a good word processor)! They were wise beyond their time. It was very, very good; but not perfect.
One has to agree that the Constitution has stood the test of time fairly well, with most of its original provisions still pretty much still in force more that 230 years after its writing. It has been amended 27 times so far, with the first ten amendments happening quickly and forming our excellent “Bill of Rights.” Of the other 17 Amendments, a few have been important improvements, but some others have served to seriously weaken the Constitution.
The framers very well understood and feared the strong tendency of all governments to grow, usurp power and escape citizens’ control. They built in several safeguard mechanisms that they hoped would be adequate. But we see that our governments have exploded into behemoths and beyond. As governments grow, our liberty shrinks.
President Reagan said all the right things, but the federal government continued to grow under his watch. President Trump resolutely claimed he would “drain the swamp” and cut government back. He underestimated the difficulty (impossibility?) of actually accomplishing that. The swamp fights back with colossal inertia, not to mention all manner of special interests as well as entrenched bureaucrats and politicians.
It would appear that something extraordinary will be required to save us. It could be something cataclysmic, most likely a collapse, but possibly a revolution. With intense polarization increasing to dangerous levels, it feels like we could almost be heading toward a civil war. Or perhaps we could avoid calamity and peacefully phase in a new and even better Constitution that incorporates the lessons we’ve learned over 230 years. The problem with that is that there is almost no one we could trust to tinker with the present Constitution (especially not with a modern word processor)! Therefore, I offer below my proposal for Amendment XXVIII.