They’ve said, on many occasions, that the United States Constitution is a “living document” that should bend to the social moires of the day, no matter legitimate or warped.
The matter of the Constitution being a living document is not so much an opinion as it is a fact. It was written by our Founding Fathers in broad enough terms to be subject to modification.
— MassLive, 10/2/10
The constitution was written in 1787, ratified in 1788 and put into practice in 1789. That’s about 230 years ago depending on which start date you choose. To insist that a document, drafted by the light of a whale oil lamp with a quill, be read the same today as it was more than two centuries ago is ridiculous. Originalism is ridiculous.
— NJ.com, 10/16/20
Those of us who believe the Constitution is a living document do not believe the nation’s most sacred text should be interpreted to fit a particular policy outcome. Nor do we believe that the Constitution should be confined to the world view of a group of men whose last survivor died 176 years ago.
— Huffington Post, 4/16/12
Okay, let’s accept their premise.
The Constitution was written by Founding Fathers who believed the People must know what their government was doing. They wanted transparency, which is why they believed the press must have First Amendment recognition and protection to report government activities without fear of retribution.
A nice idea and while we don’t believe the Founders were naive, it’s possible they never could have envisioned a press that mostly disregards their privilege as government watchdogs and would become blatant cheerleaders for one political party over another. The bias is obvious to the point of extreme journalist malpractice. The public is either given one side or not given relevant information at all, to the detriment of everything from civil discord to affecting election outcomes.
A bias, moreover, can be the foundation for investigative journalism. It may prompt the news organization to right a wrong and take up an unpopular cause. Thus, the job of journalists is not to stamp out bias. Rather, the journalist should learn how to manage it. And to do that, the journalist needs to become conscious of the biases at play in a given story and decide when they are appropriate and may be useful, and when they are inappropriate.
— American Press Institute
As a new reporter at the Guam Tribute in 1989, I was told by the newspaper’s editor, “It’s the job of the media to report the news; not incite it.” It’s NOT the job of the media to right wrongs or take up any cause. There should be NO biases, useful or inappropriate. It’s that kind of manipulative thinking that leads to bias-by-omission where, in one example, the medias (legacy and social) intentionally withheld pertinent information we later found swung an election.
A belated “My bad” doesn’t cut it, especially when these same people would be screaming bloody murder if it had happened to them.
IF the Constitution is to be considered a “living document”, the media’s First Amendment protection must be revoked as they have proven themselves undeserving. There are too many recent examples of false reporting and plagiarism that makes them unworthy of any kind of Constitutional privilege and protection. When they lie and are proven to have done so, especially when it damages individuals or groups, the aggrieved should be able to be sue until the offender offers genuine contrition; verbal and monetary. The fact they believe they alone can dictate what is fact and what is not, just because they say so, is obviously not what the Founders intended. “Misinformation” is the latest excuse they use to steer the public towards narratives the press and their preferred politicians desire.
So, let’s go there; declare the Constitution a “living document” and when the press is targeted, bites them in the ass, and costs them jobs, remind them we gave them what they wanted.