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Why not condemn our rotting corpse of a constitution, instead of focusing on the flies, such as Boss Hog, i.e., Sen. Faircloth (“Boss Hog,” 10/10)? The United States Constitution, with its separation of powers, checks and balances, state’s rights, county rights, and municipal rights, is a blueprint for paralysis and corruption. Boss Hog could not have written a constitution more beneficial to himself and his kind.

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The torturous amendment procedures of the Constitution and state’s rights were also designed to preserve slavery in the South. When the proportion of nonslave states increased sufficiently so even the Constitution could no longer shield slavery, the South seceded, and the wealthy slave owners conned poor white Southerners into marching off to slaughter, while they stayed home and ran the plantations. Almost a century after the Civil War, the Constitution still made the federal government too weak to enforce the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments, which never could have been passed except by stretching the Constitution to the breaking point. No wonder the United States Constitution is beloved by reactionary racists and militia groups.

A centralized parliamentary democracy, with proportional representation and some degree of accountability, would be a vast improvement. It would end the two-party dictatorship and raise the intellectual level of election campaigns. Now elections are as mindless and manipulative as beer and cigarette advertisements. It would also force the elected representatives to stop passing the buck and start governing.

It is time to reexamine democracy, as well. What is democracy? Is it a tyranny of the majority? Is it anarchy? Is it a compromise between government and anarchy, as in the United States? Or is it as meaningless a slogan as socialism in Russia in 1980? And who says the knuckle-dragging majority has an unalienable right to throw monkey wrenches in the machine of government, and wage war on drugs, and carry out final solutions, wars on the kulaks, Cultural Revolutions, and ethnic cleansing?

Alexandria, Va.