Friday, October 21, 2016

Constitutional Amendments, Ranked

So, this Deadspin listicle floated by me and caught my eye last weekend and the more I thought about it, the more I took issue with some of their choices here. Then, it occurred to me. Why not put together my own list? Every good student of political science should have one, right? So, here, for your reading please.

Constitutional Amendments, Ranked (The Lit City Blues Edition)
1. First  (This is the whole ball of wax to me. Without out, America doesn't have a foundation)
2. Thirteenth (But, the First Amendment ain't worth shit if you can keep slaves. So that's a no.)
3. Fifteenth (tie) (These three get a tie because they opened up our democracy to those who had been excluded at the start of it all- women, people of color and the young.)
3. Nineteenth (tie)
3. Twenty-Sixth (tie)
6. Fourteenth (Once you've figured out the bedrock freedom and who can have it and that slaves are bad, you should probably define citizenship.)
7. Fourth (tie) (Unreasonable search and seizure = bad. Def a top 10 pick.)
7. Fifth.(tie) (Protection against self-incrimination. Also important.)
9. Ninth  (Probably my favorite amendment. Was tempted to rank it 2nd, but it's a solid mid-major that can make a Cinderella run deep if you're not careful.)
10. Seventh
11. Sixth
12. Eighth (Seven, Six and Eight could have been a nice group together, but I separated them out.)
13. Tenth
14. Second (Reflective of my ambiguity on the issue of guns, it sort of fell right in the middle.)
15. Twelfth (Picking the President is important.)
16. Twenty-Fifth (Ditto figuring out what happens if he dies.)
17. Twenty-Fourth (Poll Tax, bad.)
18. Twenty-Seventh
19. Sixteenth
20. Twenty-Third
21. Eleventh
22. Seventeenth (I'm surprised this one didn't end up higher, since I think there's a case to be made that you can be of too minds about it. In general, I think more democracy is good, but this also could be seen as one of the root causes in throwing the relationship between the states and the Federal Government so out of whack since it represents a big rollback in power for the states.)
23. Twenty-Second
24. Twentieth
25. Twenty-First
26. Eighteenth
27. Third (Seems somewhat antiquated, but you have to wonder if police like forcibly using your house for a stakeout would be covered here.)

This was actually a super-hard and really interesting thought exercise to have...  I diverge a little from the folks at Deadspin, which is fine. I can sort of understand why they made some of the choices they made, but as you can see above, I provide some brief annotations as to my rationale. Though I do think the 9th remains one of my favorite amendments.

No comments:

Post a Comment