CNN found the audio of an interview with Roy Moore in 2011 in which he laments the fact that the Constitution has been amended so many times. Agreeing with an interviewer who said he wanted to eliminate all amendments after the Bill of Rights, he said that would “eliminate many problems.”
In Moore’s June appearance, one of the hosts says he would like to see an amendment that would void all the amendments after the Tenth.
“That would eliminate many problems,” Moore replied. “You know people don’t understand how some of these amendments have completely tried to wreck the form of government that our forefathers intended.”
For the record, that would include getting rid of the 13th Amendment, which forbids slavery, the 15th Amendment which guarantees the right to vote to black people, and the 19th Amendment, which gives women the right to vote. Of course, for Moore that’s a feature, not a bug. Getting rid of those amendments is consistent with many of his past statements and actions, from his association with the pro-slavery League of the South to his support of a homeschool curriculum that says women should not be allowed to vote or hold public office.
The host agreed with Moore, before turning his attention to the 14th Amendment, which was passed during the Reconstruction period following the Civil War and guaranteed citizenship and equal rights and protection to former slaves and has been used in landmark Supreme Court cases such as Brown v. Board of Education and Obergefell v. Hodges.
“People also don’t understand, and being from the South I bet you get it, the 14th Amendment was only approved at the point of the gun,” the host said.“Yeah, it had very serious problems with its approval by the states,” Moore replied. “The danger in the 14th Amendment, which was to restrict, it has been a restriction on the states using the first Ten Amendments by and through the 14th Amendment. To restrict the states from doing something that the federal government was restricted from doing and allowing the federal government to do something which the first Ten Amendments prevented them from doing. If you understand the incorporation doctrine used by the courts and what it meant. You’d understand what I’m talking about.”
I do know what you’re talking about. And as usual, you’re completely wrong. The 14th Amendment ratification was a condition of the Confederate states being readmitted to the union, and for damn good reason. The whole point of the Civil War was to prevent those states from violating the rights of the people living in them. The 14th Amendment was the means of ensuring that they would not be able to continue to do so. I’ve never understood the argument against this, especially from people who cry about the tyranny of the federal government.
If it’s wrong for the federal government to take away your right to free speech, or your freedom of religion, why would it be okay for a state government to do so? If you actually believe in the notion that these rights are inalienable and inviolable, then what difference does it make which level of government is violating them? There is only one answer to that question. If you think states should have the authority to do so, you don’t actually believe in the idea of human rights at all. Again, this is quite consistent with Moore’s political ideology.