He’s Either Stupid…

So I’ve had some time to think about the quote.  You know the one.  Yeah, that quote where a leading contender for the Republican presidential nomination came out and said point blank that the Constitution needed to be changed to fit the standards of God, not the other way around.

Yeah, that quote.

In context, the quote doesn’t get much better, and as Raw Story pointed out, it was enough to leave the folks at Morning Joe a little shell-shocked after rolling the clip.  Lesser professionals would have let their jaws drop, but I’ll hand it to Scarborough & Co., they may not have necessarily kept all of their cool, but they retained some of it.

The ludicrous factor of such a thing is understandably very high, and shows a blatant disregard for the principles on which this country was structured, and even a complete ignorance behind the basic premise of a “living” Constitution.

Despite being, by and large, a Christian community, I’ve always found it interesting that the actual word, “God” does not show up in the Constitution that the framers ultimately designed.  Of course, this was due in great part to the contributions of those great non-Christians Jefferson and Madison, but also, as Edwards and Kane illustrate, that the government’s power should not come from God all-mighty, but from “We the people.”

This is an understandable position to take given that the founding fathers weren’t very far removed from the religious persecution that ultimately led to the colonizing of America in the first place.

I’ve time and time again made the case against mixing Church and State, so I’ll eschew a lengthy argument on that for now, but there was something about Huckabee’s statement that I’ve not found a great deal of people touch upon that also bothers me.

All of this talk about changing the constitution to meet God’s standards comes in the context of how much easier it is to change the Constitution than it is to change God.  Academically, I think there is a valid counter argument to this.  The objective, actual, infinite God, should he/she/it exist, may or may not change, as mere mortals, we can not know this, just as many religious teachings will explain that it is not possible for man to fully comprehend God.

Thus, we cannot necessarily ever know if God does or does not change.

But Huck actually used the term, “the word of the Living God.”  And of course that changes.  The “word of the Living God”, perhaps the bible, may not exactly change all the time, but it does change, and depending upon the perspective you use to look at the problem, it could change all the time, or very rarely.

The thing here is we are now discussing human perception of God, and one need only to look at the bloody history our species has etched in time from religious wars to know that the understanding of the Living God does in fact change, and congregate, and segregate and conflict.  A prime example is the difference between the Evangelical belief that one is saved through faith alone, while the Catholics believe that salvation is awarded through both faith and good works.

Then there are the additions and edits of the Bible.  Indeed, wasn’t there a great council that came together to put the Bible together in the first place?  Weren’t there people who decided what would be taken and what would not be taken as gospel?  Prior to this, there are people who may have accepted certain gospels as the word of the Living God, but after that council had convened, uh-huh, no more.

Then you have the progression of the Bible.  First it’s the Torah, then there’s the New Testament, and here God’s people split, some only following the Old Testament, and some taking both as Gospel.  Then, just for fun, let’s through in the Mormon Bible, and you have even more changing of the word of God.

And let’s not even throw the Quran in the mix for now.

This is all interesting, and highlights one of the primary reasons why mixing Church and State, particularly in a multicultural society, is not the swellest of ideas.  But it still doesn’t bring us to the point I really wanted to make which deals more with the Constitution.

Yes, the Constitution can be changed, and that was done specifically for a very solid purpose.  Now maybe I’m missing Huck’s point here, but we’ll go over the changing capabilities of the Constitution right now to get us all on a level playing field.

Perhaps the wisest thing the founders ever did was create a Constitution that was open both to change, and to amendments.  They did not create a rigid and immobile document for they understood two things.  The first was that their own wisdom was not infinite, that there would bound to be parts of the Constitution that may have been erroneous, and that there would come along wiser men and women who would have better ideas than they had.  The other great thing about this maleable Constitution of ours is great because time does not stand still.  With new generations come new inventions, new conventions on every day life.  The founding fathers didn’t have automobiles and airplanes and the internet to look at and figure out how to fit government around.

So, with the grade school Social Studies lesson over, what it looks to me is that Huckabee’s desire is to take our great, changeable, Constitution and solidify it into a document that guarantees us a theocracy.  Not only is the idea itself greatly ill-advised, it is, when speaking about congressional procedure, rules, and requirements, mathematically impossible to do.

There’s no way you’re going to get enough congressional support to turn this country, constitutionally, into a theocracy and keep it there.  It’s just not going to happen.  Keeping this in mind, I’ve come up with a handful of possibilities in regards to Governor Huckabee.

He’s either really stupid for putting this out and actually believing it’s both a good idea and attainable…


He’s just a little stupid because maybe he’s trying to game the system.  Keep in mind, he’s following on the heels of a politically Christian conman in President Bush himself.  Bush, mind you, considered Jesus his favorite philosopher, spoke to God, and attempted to put forth a Constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage in order to protect the sanctity of marriage for straight folks.

This last bit should not be ignored.  You see, few people were able to so successfully pander to the Religious Right as Bush.  And he knew how to work it too.  He knew the language, but he also knew exactly how to play the politics of the thing too.  In the leading Christian crusades that Bush waged on the government, he managed to thread the needle and offer up proposals that sounded really good to Christians, played the rule of fifty plus one politics to a t, and had absolutely no chance of being passed into law whatsoever.

Take the gay marriage thing, for instance.  It’s a hot button issue, and while people under thirty may be more open minded to gay marriage, the American public at large is not quite so understanding.  Therefore, Bush was not risking upsetting enough people to put his political life in peril.  At the same time, just even showing effort in this endeavor endeared him to the Religious Right like you wouldn’t believe, but because of the required congressional support, and the actual overreaching and permanence of the initiative, it had no prayer of making it back to Bush to actually be signed.

This last point is particularly important because, again, things change, people change, and public opinion changes.  People under thirty are significantly less opposed to gay marriage than those over thirty, and I’m sure the generation that comes after my own will be even more open minded.  Actually enacting such an amendment would eventually create a backlash that would bury much of the conservative movement and the Republican party in a pile of rubble potentially for generations.

Huck very well just may be going for that exact same kind of thing.  After all, Mitt kinda pulled it off with his religion speech; making his sentiments about freedom and religion palatable to all but those who have their ear to the ground on Church and State issues (and are on the side of the wall).

But I think here Huck makes a gross miscalculation.  This isn’t abortion, gay rights, prayer in schools, or any number of lesser hot button issues.  What he just put forth is an idea to fundamentally change the United States into an entity far different than it is today.  He blows by the tired old rhetoric of America being founded upon the Judeo-Christian ethic, and, as a very prominent politician, suggested we should give up our religious freedom, and become the very theocracies our fore fathers fled, and the same kind of theocracy that plagues the world today.

But I almost forgot my last “or”.


Huck really knows something I don’t know, which makes me incredibly nervous. 

2 Responses to “He’s Either Stupid…”

  1. Tony Iovino says:

    True Republicans Barry Goldwater and Teddy Roosevelt warned us about injecting religion into American politics. After the decimation of our party by W and Lott and Delay and the rest of the Southern Republicans, if Huckabee is the nominee I fear they’ll be no more GOP north of the Mason-Dixon. The last Republican in NY, please shut out the lights.

  2. USpace says:

    Huckabee wants to have adulterers, homosexuals and rape victims stoned to death. He also wants to make alcohol and music videos illegal, and make women 2nd class citizens and to take all girls out of school.

    Oops, my bad, that’s another ‘religion’.

    Hey, anybody but the PIAPS!

    if you’re MAD
    punish your country
    VOTE for Hillary



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