Well, let me put forth the chain of ideas I mentioned to him, the last time it came up.
The founders made the Constitution amendable. (This, he protested as a “bad idea” if memory serves.) They made it very difficult to amend. (I submit this was likely out of a desire to avoid a “shifting platform” as well as to prevent ‘tyranny of the majority’) It is comparatively easy for Congress to pass a law.
Now, absent the power of Judicial Review, what separates a law from an amendment? Amendments are harder to enact or repeal. But without judicial review, they offer no authoritative advantage. So it would seem Congress would go about passing laws rather than amendments, and if a law potentially conflicts with an amendment, we have no arbiters to decide whether it does or not.
So Congress could pass a flag-burning law with 51% majority in both houses and the President.
So, my points are these:
1.) Judicial Review serves an important function in checking the Executive and Legislative branches, and I think, a good one.
2.) The founders must have had some process like this in mind, else the amendment procedures for the Constitution seem entirely useless.
Am I way off base?