Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has just released his latest book, Six Amendments: How and Why We Should Change the Constitution. He suggests amendments to the constitution would reduce gun violence, abolish the death penalty, restrict political campaign spending, and limit states' independence and reports USA Today.
Stevens also reflects on today's justices, the complex cases they face, and the issues likely to reach the court in the near future, from same-sex marriage to government surveillance.
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His ideas include:
· Changing the Second Amendment to make clear that only a state's militia, not its citizens, has a constitutional right to bear arms.
· Changing the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against "cruel and unusual punishments" by specifically including the death penalty.
· Removing from First Amendment protection any "reasonable limits" on campaign spending enacted by Congress or the states.
· Requiring that congressional and state legislative districts be "compact and composed of contiguous territory" to stop both parties from carving out safe seats.
· Eliminating states' sovereign immunity from liability for violating the Constitution or an act of Congress, which he calls a "manifest injustice."
· Allowing Congress to require states to perform federal duties in emergencies, in order to reduce "the risk of a national catastrophe.
Read more about the book here