That's an interesting question. Thomas Jefferson might have said your idea doesn't go far enough. His opinion was that every generation should foment its own revolution, which might imply the need for a new Constitution five times in one hundred years! Obviously, most of our founding fathers and the leaders followed him didn't think that this was quite necessary, and the constitution has remained largely intact. In fact, the Founders deliberately made it difficult to change the Constitution, probably because they felt that the general principles they were laying down were enough. In fact, there was a lot of initial reluctance to include a Bill of Rights in the Constitution, because people were afraid that anything not specifically written down in the Constitution as a right would be immediately construed as "not a right, since it's not in the Constitution." So you can see the tendency toward the application of general principles in the Constitution rather than specific enumerations of rights and policies. (The compromise, by the way, on that issue was: the Constitution was ratified WITHOUT a Bill of Rights, and the founders agreed that the very first amendments to the Constitution would enumerate the most important rights. The first ten amendments, therefore, are now known as the Bill of Rights).
In my own opinion, I think the Constitution is a basically sound document that really doesn't need much in the way of change. As you correctly pointed out, laws and policies can become obsolete. But I think amending the Constitution only exacerbates that problem - you see how we amended the Constitution to outlaw alcohol, and then had to amend the Constitution AGAIN to repeal that amendment. Therefore I think that in general, the less that is done to the Constitution, the better. It is a document that gives Congress plenty of leeway to create laws and change them as necessary. The Constitution will serve us best as a set of general guiding principles. I hope this answer helps you in some way. Take care!
· 1 decade ago