Letters to the editor for Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013
Hopefully, lawmakers’ votes didn’t hurt many
Now that the government shutdown has finally ended at the cost to our economy of $24 billion, I decided to check the congressional records to see who voted to end the shutdown. To be honest, I was not surprised to find that both Sen. Dean Heller and Rep. Mark Amodei voted nay. In other words, they voted against reopening the government. Hopefully there were not too many Nevada voters hurt during that difficult period.
Constitution rightly limits federal control
Eugene Paslov’s column on Sept. 26 needs clarification. He sees our Constitution as a document that “lives and changes with national circumstances.” Any basic law class teaches that statutes are to be interpreted the way those passing them intended. Knowing full well that concentrated power is a grave threat to individual liberties, the framers of our Constitution created a document that is intended to severely limit the ability of the federal government to gain too much power.
For those who want to concentrate power in the hands of a central government, applying the same rules that apply to interpreting our laws to interpreting the Constitution becomes an obstacle. Hence, the idea is taught that the Constitution is a document that lives and changes, which simply means it can be twisted and molded to conform to whatever one wishes it to mean. Unfortunately, this thinking has resulted in placing the power required to solve many of the local problems that Mr. Paslov mentions into the hands of centralized federal government bureaucracies, with the inevitable result that, removed from local control, the problems only become worse.
His saying that his method of interpreting our Constitution resulted in the abolition of slavery, civil rights laws, and the right of women to vote is simply not correct. These rights were granted and/or reaffirmed by the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, Fifteenth and Nineteenth amendments, not by reinterpreting existing sections. Formally amending the Constitution is the only legitimate way to make changes in this wonderfully crafted document.