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The Journal of Literary Satire | Hastily Written & Slopilly Edited
Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Amendments to the New Iraqi Constitution

by J. M. Houk

Iraq Constitutes.

The Iraqi Bill of Rights

First Amendment—Freedom of Speech, Press, and Peaceable Assembly
All Iraqis (except women, Sunnis, and Kurds), shall have the right of unabridged speech and press, and the right to assemble peaceably, so long as they keep to themselves and do not say too much.

Second Amendment—Right to Keep and Bear Arms
All Iraqis (except women, Sunnis, and Kurds) shall have the right to bare arms—even if they are particularly hairy.

Third Amendment—Protection from Quartering of Troops
No Soldier shall be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, but soldiers shall have the right to blow to smithereens any house without consent of the homeowner.

Fourth Amendment—Protection from Unreasonable Search and Seizure
The right of all Iraqis (except women, Sunnis, and Kurds) to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects shall not be violated, except in where determined to be an enemy combatant or supporter, and a warrant shall be issued in all cases with or without probable cause, if there is time and printer toner permitting.

Fifth Amendment—Due Process, Double Jeopardy, and Self-Incrimination

Sixth Amendment—Trial by Jury and Other Rights of the Accused
All Iraqis (except women, Sunnis, and Kurds) shall have the right to a speedy and public trial, but shall not be given a haircut, shave, or manicure before the trial. They will also have the right to defense counsel chosen by the U.S. Justice Department and shall not be compelled to testify against themselves at trial (since they will have already been coerced into confession while incarcerated).

Seventh Amendment—Civil Trial By Jury
In suits at common law where the value in controversy exceeds $20,000,000,000,000, the right to a trial by jury shall be preserved.

Eighth Amendment—Prohibition of Excessive Bail; Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Excessive bail shall not be imposed since no bail will be too excessive. No cruel or unusual punishment will be inflicted; however, the definitions of “cruel” and “unusual” remain relative and subjective.

Ninth Amendment—Enumeration of Rights
The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people (since they will have no rights that they will retain to be disparaged).

Tenth Amendment— Powers Not Delegated
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. Since there are no powers not delegated to the United States, the Iraqis shall be delegated nada.

Subsequent Amendments

Eleventh Amendment—Judicial Powers
The Judicial powers of the United States shall not be construed to be extended to anyone, other than the United States. Yes, that means you, Mr. and Mrs. Iraqi.

Twelfth Amendment—Presidential Election
The President and Vice President shall be elected by the President and Vice President of the United States.

Thirteenth Amendment—Abolition of Slavery
All that unpaid work you’re doing to repair your country—well, think of it as a charitable contribution.

Fourteenth Amendment—Due Process and Equal Protection
No Iraqi state shall enact any laws that shall deprive any Iraqi of Due Process or Equal Protection since the United States shall take care of depriving you of all that.

Fifteenth Amendment—Deprivation of Rights Based on Race
No Iraqi shall be deprived of any rights based on their race, since the U.S. discriminates against all Iraqis, regardless of race or ethnicity.

Sixteenth Amendment—Taxes
Uncle Sam will tax the bejesus out of you, just like in the U.S.

Seventeenth Amendment—Composition of the Senate
The Iraqi Senate shall be composed of two senators from each state with new senators to be appointed daily by Condi Rice as necessary.

Eighteenth Amendment—Prohibition
The manufacture, sale and transportation of intoxicating liquors shall be strictly prohibited; that is, unless it is expressly intended for import into U.S. military bases.

nineteenth Amendment—Discrimination Based on Gender
Yes, discrimination based on sex shall continue on into perpetuity.

Twentieth Amendment—Terms of President, Vice President, and Senators
The terms of the President, Vice President and Senators would normally have set dates of expiry, but who are we kidding? They’re unlikely to be around that long.

Twenty-First Amendment—Repeal of Eighteenth Amendment
O.K., we’ve repealed the Eighteenth Amendment after realizing we needed to liquor up people to convince them to join the Iraqi police and military forces.

Twenty-Second Amendment—Term Limits
No Iraqi shall serve more than two terms as President. That’s what we call a no-brainer in the U.S. since it is unlikely to survive two terms absent super human powers.

Twenty-Third Amendment—District of Columbia
The District of Columbia, which is treated as a poor relation in the context of the U.S. Government, has more rights than Iraq. So D.C. says, na na na na boo boo, to you.

Twenty-Fourth Amendment—Primary Elections
Iraqis (except women, Sunnis, and Kurds) will have the right to vote in primary elections, but they just might want skip it unless they are experiencing suicidal tendencies.

Twenty-Fifth Amendment—Presidential Succession
In the event that a President is unable to serve a full term, the Vice President shall become President. We know this will take up a lot of Dick Cheney’s time, but he insisted.

Twenty-Sixth Amendment—Voting Age
Given the dangers associated with voting in Iraq, the voting age will be set at eight years. Good luck and take care.

Twenty-Seventh Amendment—Compensation for Senators
No change in rate for Senators shall be scheduled, but if one manages to stick around—hey, let’s talk.

J. M. Houk resides in New Hampshire with her human and four-legged family. When not raking leaves, she's shoveling snow or swatting mosquitoes. She spends her spare time trying to figure out how to perform rhinoplasty on the Old Man in the Mountain so that he doesn't have to suffer any longer from the Michael Jackson absent-nose syndrome.