The Constitution Is Still Constitutional, For Now

I think Scott was the first person I heard say that one day, the Supreme Court may rule the Constitution unconstitutional. That didn’t happen yesterday, when the court decided the Schuette case on a 6-2 vote, but it could have. The issue in Schuette was whether it is permissible for a state to prohibit race discrimination by public institutions. The majority held that a state can indeed ban discrimination on the basis of race. Whew! Some of us thought that issue was settled by the 14th Amendment. But two justices, Ginsburg and Sotomayor, dissented: they would have held that states are required to engage in race discrimination, no matter how much a state’s citizens may protest in favor of equal treatment.

The 14th Amendment guarantees all Americans the equal protection of the laws. For a public entity like a university to discriminate against an applicant because of his or her race is an obvious violation of the 14th Amendment. Indeed, the amendment was adopted precisely in order to ban race discrimination by public authorities. Yet Ginsburg and Sotomayor were prepared to hold the 14th Amendment “unconstitutional”–i.e., disapproved by the official Left–and require that all states discriminate on the basis of race (or at least preserve the option to do so) whether they like it or not. Their position was pretty much unanimously applauded in the liberal media.

America’s liberals hold, with only a few exceptions, that the Constitution, specifically the 14th Amendment, is “unconstitutional,” and that paying no attention to race is “racist.” How liberalism came to this point is a long and torturous story, but if human history has ever seen a self-refuting philosophy, this is it.

Note that Schuette does not hold–contrary to the characterizations of some commentators–that race discrimination is illegal. Rather, it holds, much more narrowly, that it is permissible, at least under some circumstances, not to engage in race discrimination. Affirmative action (i.e., systemic racism) lives to fight again another day.

Michael Ramirez sums up this sad state of affairs graphically. Click to enlarge:

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