Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Another David Souter?

As I frantically prepare for my imminent move, a good friend brought to my attention a couple significant articles linked by GodSpy on the President's nominee to the Supreme Court. (I figured the lives of millions of unborn children might be worth a few minutes away from panicked packing.)

Ask yourself: what do we really know about the President's nominee to the Supreme Court, Judge John G. Roberts, Jr? Why was he given a pass by liberal Democrats? As a recent New Yorker article says:

When we met last week in his Capitol office, it was clear that the Roberts nomination had come as a relief. “There were lots of people we didn’t want, and I made sure he knew what those names were,” Reid said....

Roberts, in Reid’s view, left no doubt that he would be very reluctant to overturn precedents. To do so, Roberts had said, the Court would first have to consider a series of objective criteria, two of which stood out: whether a precedent fostered stability in the nation; and the extent to which society had come to rely on an earlier ruling, even a dubious one.

Reid more than once compared Roberts to Justice David Souter, who was appointed by the first President Bush, in 1990, and today is widely detested by conservatives because he frequently sides with the more liberal Justices.

Perhaps Reid, who is at least nominally pro-life, is providing cover for a fellow pro-lifer.

But now consider this selection from the New York Times:

Judge John G. Roberts Jr., the Supreme Court nominee, gave advice to advocates for gay rights a decade ago, helping them win a landmark 1996 ruling… Romer v. Evans is considered a touchstone in the culture wars, and it produced what the gay rights movement considers its most significant legal victory.

Perhaps the Times is simply trying to unnerve pro-lifers? Maybe.

But you have to wonder how the pro-life base fits into Republican Party political calculus. Does the GOP think it can use the continuing the abortion controversy (created by the Supreme Court) to maintain the loyalty of religious conservatives? I pray that our leaders aren't simply and cynically playing us again.

  • Sheryl Gay Stolberg and David D. Kirkpatrick, "Court Nominee Advised Group on Gay Rights," New York Times (August 5, 2005).

  • Elsa Walsh, "Minority Retort: How a pro-gun, anti-abortion Nevadan leads the Senate’s Democrats," The New Yorker (August 8, 2005).


    jon.jackson@www.seerocketcity.com said...

    Sometimes I too wonder if the Republicans aren't playing us. Other times I wonder if God isn't playing us.
    Would Roe v. Wade have even come to pass in the first place if Christians had been more active in engaging the world? Ultimately sin always becomes the anvil against which we are shaped. Maybe it isn't so much abortion God cares about but our reaction to it.
    I'm not saying Roe v. Wade shouldn't be overturned. It should never have been in the first place. But one of the reasons it came to pass in the first place was the complacency of Christians. Remember: tolerance is just another word for 'I don't care enough to get involved'.

    Anonymous Avila said...

    Great point, Jon, but I would go further. We might well need to change ourselves before we become activists in changing others.

    The question is whether we care enough to uproot a sin that may already be woven into the fabric of our lives.

    As Rev. Paul Marx, founder of Human Life International, said so wisely: "If you sow contraception, you reep abortion." It is no accident that the largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, began peddling contraception. Once good people got used to separating sex from procreation, abortion became the indispensible backup.

    The Challenge: now ask yourself how much you care.