That is the essential question.
Do we want to be governed by a constitution framed by men who believed in natural rights (a concept coming under attack now even among some conservatives) or by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who believes that the only law that matters is the iron law of social justice?
That’s the real question Ruthie’s asking us.
“I’m not a philosopher, but I do interpret a text,” Ginsburg said during an onstage question-and-answer with BBC reporter Razia Iqbal in front of a chic crowd of Ginsburg’s friends, family and admirers, which included Olivia Wilde, Karlie Kloss, Diane von Furstenberg and Katie Couric. “The text I interpret most often is the U.S. constitution; it is, indeed, a living constitution. Who would want to be governed by a dead one?”
The “dead” constitution was the work of men like Madison and Hamilton. The living one is whatever RBG believes this week?
Would we rather be governed by a timeless document that can’t just be altered whatever the partisan passions of the moment may be, or to be governed by unelected lifetime judges who answer to no one except themselves?
Do we want to be free men and women or slaves living under a black robed tyranny?
Bonus, here’s what Razia Iqbal is most famous for.
You were the host of the hour-long program, and the principal subject was the major deal announced, after years of negotiations, between the P5+1 and Iran.
One of your guests was Danny Danon, Israel’s Minister of Science, Technology and Space. To my astonishment, you said the following to him, referring to Israel:
“But you’re not under threat by Iran. Nobody in Iran has threatened you for a very long time. You’re harking back to a time when President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad threatened Israel directly.”