I’m as much of a fan of the Founding Fathers as anyone but I certainly realize they weren't perfect. I believe they came up with the best guiding document for government in the history of the world. But, like the Founders themselves, this document was not meant to be perfect. What happens when the Constitution disagrees with itself? I’m going to point out some examples and then hopefully convince you that it is more important to follow principles instead of laws, because principles are always true, while constitutions and laws can, and often do, get it wrong.
The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution states that “No person…shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself”. So basically people don’t have to testify against themselves. That's good because it gets rid of some coercion! But then in the Sixth Amendment it states that “the accused shall enjoy the right…to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor”. That means the court can force people to testify to defend the accused. So, a witness can be forced to testify or else he will be guilty of contempt of court, which is a criminal offense. Wait, when someone is accused of a crime, don’t they have the right to NOT testify? This is a paradox and an appeal to the Constitution will not provide the answer.