When Retired Justice Stephen Breyer beg Observations of Abraham Lincoln that the nation’s “popular government is often called a test” of the nation, it is hard for him to lose sight of the fact that this nation recently, and for the first time since the Civil War, must an attempt to neutralize a democratically elected government by force.
Nor can’t he lose that Supreme Court – now under the sure control of an extreme right-wing supermajority – to be shaken in an increasingly brazen reactionary project.
In times of national division and conflict, the Supreme Court’s power is often amplified, leaving its members with a choice. They can serve as a bulwark against extremism, as the Court did in the post-World War II era when it pushed back against white efforts in the former Confederacy to protect exist Jim Crow. Or they can foster division and conflict, as the Court did by enacting Dred Scott decision in 1857 that incorporated the most radical views of Southern slave owners into the Constitution, including the denial of American citizenship to black Americans.
The current majority of the Court is clearly pursuing the latter – one that could and has led America to civil war and other divisions in the past.
Republican-controlled states are rushing to pass restrictive abortion laws in anticipation Court has the ability to gut Roe v. Wade—This will be the first time it ends the recognition of a fundamental constitutional right.
But, in a very real sense, the right of choice is gone, as the Supreme Court’s right-wing majority has allowed Texas abortion laws – which made abortion legal in that State – to remain. maintained, despite its patent. unconstitutional according to Roe precedent is still clearly valid.
Such action reflects the utter lawlessness of a majority of the Court so extreme that the desire to execute a public policy agenda is so extreme that it is willing to eliminate any pretense of judicial neutrality – and thereby endangering the legitimacy of the Court to achieve ideological and political ends.
This term alone, apart from the possibility of being gutted RoeCourts are poised to issue rulings that could radically limit states’ ability to regulate guns at a time of increasing gun violence, scrapping the Clean Air Act and limiting the ability of states to regulate guns. Universities consider race when making admissions decisions, undermining decades of progress in achieving diversity in higher education.
Few of these decisions are likely to be supported by a majority of Americans. For example, nearly 70 percent of countries oppose disabling Roe. But the paralysis of Congress – made worse by control of House districts and the perpetuation of turmoil in a Senate that has amplified the power of centre-right voters in the districts. small states – would certainly increase the power of a majority of the Courts to impose their preference of policies on the nation, whether most of its citizens like it or not.
Most recently, a majority of the Court attacked what Justice Samuel Alito – in a speech to the Federal Assembly – denounced as the dangerous development of “more scientific“The impact on public health during a pandemic.
During the federal vaccine and testing mandate debates, Breyer has consistently made his position clear: Thousands of people are dying from preventable COVID deaths every day, and vaccination rates are rising. will limit the number of people injured, including in workplaces. Accordingly, by tying the hands of the government during a national emergency, the Court will literally sentence thousands of Americans to death.
However, the Court’s majority went ahead and did just that, nullifying the workplace testing or vaccination rule imposed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration with a majority based on their ruling on the absurd proposition that, because COVID-19 is transmitted outside of the workplace as well as within, requiring employees to be vaccinated or tested is not a workplace policy. If this reasoning were generalized, it would undermine OSHA’s ability to regulate a wide range of risks and hazards that exist both inside and outside the workplace.
In his resignation, Breyer cited the Gettysburg address Lincoln had sent in 1863, as the Civil War was just beginning to end. But Lincoln did not call the United States an “experiment” at Gettysburg.. He did, however, in remarks he made to Congress on July 4, 1861, during his first year in office, as well as the first year of the war.
After describing the nation’s “popular government” as an “initial successful experiment,” Lincoln announced that a new challenge had emerged for America: “The maintenance of success.” [of democracy] against a formidable internal attempt to overthrow it. ”
During his first months in office before that, Lincoln had clearly held the Supreme Court accountable for the threat to democracy, through Dred Scott decision.
Lincoln warned that when the Court took such a gravely wrong turn, when he had just taken office, citizens could not “practically resign their Government into the hands of that famous court”. Indeed, his pursuit of the fight actually led to condemnation of the Supreme Court’s attempt to use its position to abolish slavery everywhere in the country, something that would resulted in the Emancipation Proclamation and ultimately the enactment of the Thirteenth Amendment.
Breyer did not participate in Lincoln’s public reprimand of the Supreme Court; and as a member of the Court he would likely be startled to hear such an argument today. However, as Lincoln observed, when the Supreme Court became a partisan ally of reactionary forces, as it did in the 19th Century – and again in the 1930s, when the Court majority attempted to rescind the New Deal – it fell into the hands of the leaders of the elected branches to repel its excessive encroachment.
We are in a different moment today, when an extreme supermajority in the judges of the Court is determined to use its claimed authority as arbiter of the Constitution to force a person to ideologically oriented and seriously reactionary, national reconstruction. In Lincoln’s words, we all bear the responsibility of maintaining the “test” of “our popular government” against attempts to “topple it,” which entails going against the majority. GOP installed by the Court.
https://www.thedailybeast.com/the-supreme-court-is-american-democracys-enemy-now?source=articles&via=rss The Supreme Court is the enemy of today’s American democracy