SOUTH BRONX SCHOOL: The Federal Government Must Stay Out Of Education

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The Federal Government Must Stay Out Of Education

I was born and raised a Democrat. My grandfather was a precinct captain for Tweed (the political machine, not the DOE) back in the day. He did the grunt work. Registered voters in cemeteries, voted many times in many places on election day, and left turkeys on the doorsteps of the indigent just before election day. I believe in the principles of the Democratic Party even though I have a strong libertarian bent, and actually conservative on some issues.

I am not one of these Originialists when it comes to the Constitution and the role of the federal government in our lives. I do believe that the Constitution is a "living document" and its words adapt to the times. This I believe was intended by the writers of it.

I go back and forth with the health care debate. I see through the BS, know something must be done, but cringe at the thought of the federal government messing around and doing a good job. I think they should have just expanded Medicare, kept the bill simple. But, and this is a big but. I can see where health care comes into play under the Commerce Clause, and the Necessary and Proper clause. Both clauses I feel go hand in hand with one another. And I can see how others can and will disagree with me on this.

What I am having a tough time with is how the federal government can bogart its way into local education matters. No where, not one word in the Constitution gives the federal government authority to decide local education matters. In fact, Amendment 10 states clearly;
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

So when I read an email sent by an idiot like Whitney Tilson in which he states commenting on unions in the education debate;
they want to completely eviscerate the federal role in ensuring that a quality education is a right of all children.
I wonder about his mental state. But let's examine this statement more closely.

Whitney is using a big word here. But I doubt he means eviscerate as to disembowel, but rather to deprive by content or force. So the unions wish to deprive the federal government a role in education? Yeah, DUH! There is no role whatsoever for the federal government in local education matters. Whitney, you graduated from Harvard and you fail to realize this? Show us where it says the federal government has a role. Anyone show it.

Next, Whitney wants to ensure that a quality education is a right of children. Yeah, that is nice. I really agree with Whitney. I have no problem with this except one teeny tiny thing. It is not a right. Again, no where in the Constitution is there written that children are ensured a quality education. This therefore negates any role for the federal government to play in local education matters.

There is only one way to have the federal government involved in local education matters. The Constitution must be amended and then and only then can Washington have a say. The Constitution states in Article 5;
The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.

There you have it. Where are the tea baggers when we need them?

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