Module 2: Discussion

While there are great benefits to a written constitution, there are also significant problems. The words and ideas in the Constitution must have relevance and meaning for generations and realities that are difficult to imagine. The evolution of technologies and new knowledge make this challenge even more complex.

We only have to look at our U.S. Constitution to see where language has two forms of relevance: The first is what is specifically stated. This is the Constructionist point of view. The second approach is to intelligently determine what was on their minds as it would be applied to an unforeseen circumstance. This is the Activist point of view.

Our history is full of political turmoil as people rarely agree on the correct point of view one should take. After the events of September 11th, 2001, for example, new challenges emerged that were not envisioned by the writers of our constitution. While war was not recently invented, the Web as a battlefront is. Consequently, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has identified the Web as a genuine area of concern and has needed to use an Activist Approach, to gain authority to secure the Internet.

Outline how technological developments have informally changed the Constitution up until now. In the future, what further changes do you anticipate and why?