Monday, October 16, 2006

Interesting Times

Of all the people who have disappointed me politically in the last six years Sandra Day O'Connor tops the list. At the time the country needed her the most, she walked away. I realize her husband had Alzheimer's but the needs of the many sometimes outweigh the needs of the few.

Her resignation has swung the court in an untenable direction, led by those who would put their own beliefs ahead of the populace. The conservatives who like to have things both ways or as I like to refer to them, the do as I say not as I do crowd, are determined to remake America as the mirror image of Afghanistan under the Taliban and her timing on leaving the high court has increased the speed and boldness of their crusade against women.

When I hear Scalia say things like
"The Constitution very clearly forbids discrimination on the basis of race," Scalia said in response to a question by moderator Pete Williams of NBC. "It doesn't seem to me to allow Michigan to say we think it's good to discriminate on the basis of race when you want to make sure everyone is exposed to different backgrounds. We cannot use race as the test of diversity."
because his rationale is
During Sunday's debate, Scalia outlined his judicial philosophy of interpreting the Constitution according to its text, as understood at the time it was adopted. He reiterated that race has no place in school admissions, a viewpoint that put him on the losing side in 2003.
I feel chills run up and down my spine because using that logic makes me worth less than three fifths of a human being. While slaves fell under the Three-Fifths Compromise, women weren't included at all. We had to wait for the Nineteenth Amendment.

Since we have very little of the Bill of Rights that will be in force after the Decider signs the Military Commissions Act, the rest of them can't be far behind. Actually, I think the Military Commissions Act guts the Fourteenth Amendment and nobody is talking about that. Though I do find one small ray of hope
But during Sunday's debate, Scalia noted there were cases in which he and the ACLU agreed. They included rulings upholding flag burning and a 2004 opinion arguing that a U.S. citizen seized in Afghanistan in wartime could challenge his detention as an enemy combatant in U.S. courts.
One very small ray, I don't know how strong it really is.

When I was a little girl I just knew that the future would change all the restrictions I saw for women. I had faith that as time went on the world (the world did, America not so much) would become more accepting of women and their capabilities and it really looked like women would finally be considered equal. When Ms. O'Connor was raised to the Supreme Court I knew she would be a voice of calm and reason. I knew that in thirty years we would have parity. Boy was I wrong. We almost got there but now there are no longer any level voices left to keep the scales in balance. The past will become the future.

We are living in interesting times that I hope will not become a curse.

Crossposted at Big Brass Blog.

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