I'd like to see an Epstein and Yoo conversation about the Constitution. Specifically, if Profs. Epstein and Yoo were in the room while Madison et al. crafted the document, what would they each advocate to change, delete or add with the knowledge of the present. In other words, how would they change the document so that some unfortunate circumstances did not take place in the history of the United States?
For me, the greatest mistake of the Founding generation was the Constitution's protection of slavery. Chattel slavery deprived a significant part of the American people of the rights of citizenship. It divided the country along geographic lines. It distorted the structure of the government and the nature of antebellum politics. It twisted the nature of the Constitution's protection for individual rights. And its ending caused the greatest loss of life in American history. Lincoln's majestic Second Inaugural recognized that the terrible carnage of the Civil War was the price of the original founding sin of slavery:
Fondly do we hope--fervently do we pray--that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue, until all the wealth piled by the bond-man's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash, shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether."
One of the most terrible passages in American public speech, but it was deserved.