Scalia berates school children visiting court: Constitution is ‘dead, dead, dead!’
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on Monday said the U.S. Constitution was “dead, dead, dead” and lashed out at school child who he said had visited the high court with the wrong view of the document.
During a lecture at Southern Methodist University to promote their second book together, SMU law professor Bryan A. Garner noted that “my political beliefs are different from those of Justice Scalia,” according to The Dallas Morning News.
Garner explained that he was in favor of marriage rights for LGBT people and additional laws to control firearms.
“I haven’t expressed my views of either of those,” Scalia insisted, adding, “You’re a bleeding heart.”
The justice noted that law schools did a poor job at emphasizing that court decisions should be based on the letter of the law, and recalled that even school children who visited the Supreme Court had referred to the Constitution as a “living document.”
“It’s not a living document,” Scalia said. “It’s dead, dead, dead.”
Speaking at the Woodrow Wilson Center in 2005, Scalia had rejected the idea of a “living Constitution” and criticized a ruling that banned the juvenile death penalty based on “evolving notions of decency.”
“If you think aficionados of a living Constitution want to bring you flexibility, think again,” he warned. “You think the death penalty is a good idea? Persuade your fellow citizens to adopt it. You want a right to abortion? Persuade your fellow citizens and enact it. That’s flexibility.”
“Why in the world would you have it interpreted by nine lawyers?”