Confusing the Scaffolding for the Edifice

Why do lawyers make it so hard for laymen to keep up?

Capitol Dome Scaffolding

I truly believe it takes a law school education to be this stupid:

Which sent hordes to text-search said Constitution.

So he back pedals:

Although a great many progressives questioned him via Twitter, truth be known, confusing our Constitution with case law is par for the course, not just for progressives, but for a growing number of American courts as well.

At least from the perspective of this lay person:

So what do I mean by that?

Not sure, but I think it was 1980

Some friends and I went to a Fourth of July concert on the Mall, west of the Capitol.

The Capitol was undergoing a renovation and was covered with scaffolding, which obscured its incredible detail, while retaining visual clues to the building’s contours.

A workman could stand on the scaffolding and see those missing-to-the-public details, and do the work of restoration.

But I could see none of that, especially from a distance away on the Mall.

The visual has stuck with me all these years.

A venerable, important building—in fact, a national treasure.

The details hidden by the work being done on it.

When the work is done, the scaffolding is removed, the beauty—now restored—readily visible to anyone looking.

I wish law worked that way.

You have the Constitution, venerable, almost incomprehensibly important (the first written constitution in history).

Lawyers and courts build a scaffolding (case law) around it to study it, and understand and apply it.

But then they never remove the scaffolding

Instead, they add more.

Layer after layer of scaffolding.

Before long, there’s no more building to see.

Nothing but layer after incomprehensible layer of case law, now posing as the Constitution itself.

Would that we could tear away the scaffolding and begin again, and ponder the actual words of the Constitution itself—not just the layers of judges’ opinion obscuring its every detail.

Almost as if the Framers never intended their painstakingly-crafted and ratified Constitution to be the last word.

Only the starting point for Real Constitutional Law.

Case law.

But I’m not a lawyer.

So how could I possibly understand?


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