The 14th amendment was the linchpin of civil rights, though the process was painfully slow. Upon passage in 1868 it overturned the abhorrent Dred Scott verdict, which held that
…. we [the Supreme Court of the United States of America] have already said in an earlier part of this opinion, upon a different point, the right of property in a slave is distinctly and expressly affirmed in the Constitution. The right to traffic in it, like an ordinary article of merchandise and property, was guaranteed to the citizens of the United States, in every state that might desire it, for twenty years. And the government in express terms is pledged to protect it in all future time if the slave escapes from his owner. That is done in plain words — too plain to be misunderstood. …neither Dred Scott himself, nor any of his family, were made free by being carried into this territory; even if they had been carried there by the owner with the intention of becoming a permanent resident.
But, tipped off by Brad D., I am reminded that the 14th amendment also contains a 4th section [emphases mine]:
The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.
So, yes, the trust fund is real. The general fund, financed by income taxes (cut significantly over the last 4 years), owes a lot of money (more than $1.6 trillion) to the trust find, which was and is financed by payroll taxes (increased significantly in the early 1980s). As it turns out, that debt of more than $1.6 trillion “shall not be questioned.”
Seen anyone questioning it lately?