Washington Continues a Fact-Free Rant on 14th Amendment

Ellis Washington is still ranting incoherently about the 14th Amendment and the incorporation of the Bill of Rights against the states. Now he’s complaining that freedom of speech and of the press can’t be violated by state and local governments due to evil liberals and the 14th Amendment. And saying bizarre things like this:

In addition, it is essential to realize that the First Amendment, like virtually all of the Bill of Rights, was not applicable to state governments until 1925 and to apply their substantive guarantees through the 14th Amendment, a process that did not begin until Fabian socialism and progressive radicalism crept into the Supreme Court beginning with Gitlow v. New York (1925) (ruling that the 14th Amendment extended the reach of certain limitations on federal government authority set forth in the First Amendment – specifically the provisions protecting freedom of speech and freedom of the press – to the governments of the individual states).

This pattern of leftist judicial activism from the bench would increase exponentially during the FDR/Truman eras (1933-53) as FDR’s bought-and-paid-for “New Deal” Supreme Court began out of whole cloth to create and propagate the so-called “incorporation doctrine” in many of its judicial decrees, starting with the infamous Footnote 4 of Carolene Products v. U.S. (1938) and going viral in Korematsu v. U.S. (1944) (holding that Japanese, Italians and Germans be placed in internment camps based on FDR’s Order 9066 during World War II).

Say what? Korematsu had nothing to do with the 14th Amendment; it involved purely federal action. And the notion that the ruling upholding the internment of the Japanese was “leftist judicial activism” is utter nonsense. Who are more likely to support locking up a racial minority on the specious grounds that they are a threat to national security, liberals or conservatives?

This logically applies to the First Amendment by considering, for example, that until Gitlow, progressives hated the fact that Southern states before the Civil War outlawed pro-abortion literature; many states levied and collect taxes on behalf of state-sponsored churches and religious education; newspapers frequently were prohibited from publishing stories criticizing industry or certain connected political leaders because such speech was deemed seditious and consequently subject to prior restraint; and public protests regarding unpopular people or issues were repeatedly proscribed by state breach of peace laws.

Enter Pandora’s box – 40 years after Gitlow, in the 1960s, the Supreme Court began pushing its Darwinian, atheistic, progressive, anti-constitutional agenda and unleashed a nine-man sexual revolution using the incorporation doctrine to pervert the sexual mores of American society first in Griswold v. Connecticut (1965), which was based in part on the right of married couples to make decisions about contraception. Next was Roe v. Wade (1973) (legalized genocide of the pre-born), Lawrence v. Texas (2005) (legalized sodomy) and Hollingsworth v. Perry (2013) (Court will rule in June on whether same-sex marriage is lawful in all 50 states under Equal Protection grounds).

Whiskey tango foxtrot? He admits that the states routinely violated those rights that he claims to believe are inalienable — punishing free speech, forcing people to pay taxes to support churches they do not belong to, censoring newspapers and outlawing public protests — and then claims that preventing that from happening was part of a “Darwinian, atheistic, progressive, anti-constitutional agenda.” This is completely incoherent and contradictory. It’s too stupid to even be wrong.

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  • It’s too stupid to even be wrong.

    I believe that the term ‘not even wrong’ is entirely apt in this case.

  • doublereed

    Is he arguing for actual authoritarianism? Not like “pretending to be for freedom while being against it,” but like actually advocating against the right to free speech? Like States should have unlimited authority to violate the rights of their citizens?

    Because that’s what it sounds like to me.

  • lofgren

    Nope, definitely still wrong.

  • frankniddy

    He definitely sounds like a modern-day American libertarian: he doesn’t mind authoritarianism or even totalitarianism, so long as it’s at the state or local level.

  • marcus

    “Who are more likely to support locking up a racial minority on the specious grounds that they are a threat to national security, liberals or conservatives?”

    In the case of Executive Order 9066 I believe there is more than enough blame to lay on both sides of the political spectrum.

  • Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden


    Both sides of the political spectrum? Or the leadership of both political parties? Because there’s a difference.

    I don’t know enough about 9066 to know either way, but I here this kind of thing all the time – that the measure of the length of the political spectrum is the distance between Obama and the Speaker of the House (Or Bush & Pelosi, or Bush & Harry Reid, Or Clinton & Dole, etc.). Obama is not a liberal.

  • drr1

    This looks like fun. I get to play, too.

    This pattern of [conservative] judicial activism from the bench would increase exponentially during the [Gilded Age] ([1895 to 1920]) as [the right]’s bought-and-paid-for “[Lochner Era]” Supreme Court began out of whole cloth to create and propagate the so-called “[right to contract]” [and similar non-textual rights] in many of its judicial decrees, starting with the infamous [Allgeyer v. Louisiana (1897)] and going viral in [Lochner v. New York (1905) (holding that a New York health and safety law limiting the number of hours a baker could work violated the right to contract of the baker and his employer)].

    Really, I have to wonder who is feeding Washington this material. It sounds like something a foaming-at-the-mouth, far-right, first-year law student would say. The kind of student who doesn’t know anything, but who has been reading lots of right-wing legal and constitutional websites, and barfs this stuff in class thinking it makes him sound really smart. I get these every term in my classes; needless to say they’re…amusing. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to find out that this claptrap is coming from some 24 year-old neofascist who watches Glenn Beck and thinks that Matt Staver is a real constitutional scholar.

  • marcus

    Thanks Crip Dyke @ 6 I wasn’t particularly happy with the phrasing I chose. To put it another way: I believe both liberal and conservative Americans failed by not preventing (or at least doing more to prevent) the internment of Japanese-Americans during WWII.

  • Well. That’s some words. A bunch of them.

    Shorter Ellis Washington ~

    “The Founding Fathers viewed the first 10 amendments to be unalienable, but liberalactivistjudges tyrannically forced these unanienable rights on the states. From there, Japanese internment, freed ladyparts, decriminalized homogay mansex, legalized homogay manmarriage, and the fall of Rome.”

  • marcus

    Thanks for clarifying that Modus.

  • kantalope

    Has Modus built a universal translator or does he have a babelfish?

  • harrync

    If the First Amendment does not apply to the states, then surely the Second Amendment does not either. It is pretty clear that the purpose of the Second Amendment was to prevent the Federal Government from interfering with the right of the states to regulate firearms, not to limit the states rights to do so.

  • drizzt

    I’ve read dozens of his articles, and he always comes back to «God», «Natural Law», and «Darwinism»… Shit was I surprised, no God or anything, just a passing criticism of Darwin ? Is he going soft ? Come on Ellis, show us all your crazy nutcase might! Make me proud! 🙂

  • unemployedphilosopher

    @drr1: It could be worse. At least Washington cites sources (poorly). I teach Intro Philosophy more often than anything else, and you wouldn’t believe some of the crap I am required to read and comment on. My favorite sentence from last year: “So now the question becomes should we accept the memory criterion, how of it’s with all its faults.” [sic]. I’m going to frame that paper once the Mandatory Assignment Storage period passes.

    Still, it’s better than when I was TAing for nuclear engineering — nobody has yet tried to offer sexual favors for a passing grade. Or maybe I’m just not as attractive these days.

  • unemployedphilosopher

    And yes, if you’re wondering, I ran the hell away from that one. The next six weeks of lab were… awkward.