What A Supreme Court Justice Should Be

By: Ken Hughes

An appointee to the highest court in the land shouldn’t considered gender or ethnicity as a criteria. There’s entirely too much hyphenating in our culture without bringing it into the courts. Most immigrates came to America to be Americans, they should be willing to leave the old ways behind them and assimilate into their new chosen countries culture. Judge Sotomayor is of Puerto Rican decent born in New York. Both Puerto Rico and New York are part of The United States so why is it necessary for the media to treat her as if she were of second generation immigrant status? I would rather the media concentrate on Judge Sotomayor’s judicial record. I want to know if Judge Sotomayor is going to be an activist judge or one who follows the constitution when issuing opinions.

Article III section one of the constitution deals with the judiciary, there are no standards other than those of personal conduct necessary to qualify for a lifetime appointment as a federal judge. It seems obvious the founding fathers were confident of a balanced court continuing in perpetuity. It was never intended courts make laws. The courts are there to interpret the constitution when in question and to uphold or reject laws made by the various legislatures. The compassion Obama calls for in his selection for the judiciary should not be part of a nominee’s consideration. The law is not always fair and not always just but it is the law and it’s up to the legislative branch of government to alter unjust laws when necessary not that of judges and courts.

When Judge Sotomayor comes up before the senate for conformation lets hope Republicans will act more gentlemanly than Democrats have in the past. There doesn’t need to be the example of character assignation Teddy Kennedy displayed on the Senate floor prior to the Robert Bork hearings ever got started, nor does there need to be staged accusations of misconduct with a paid witness such as Anita Hill in the Clarence Thomas hearings. Those hearing weren’t the democrat’s lowest moments but they did come close.

There’s no justification for either side of the isles of congress playing politics with a nominee who will spend years influencing the American way of life. A Supreme Court appointment is the one thing a president does that can’t be undone once it’s completed. In my opinion President Obama hasn’t taken enough time and hasn’t allowed the public ample opportunity to asses Judge Sotomayor’s judicial record and qualifications something we the people have a right to know. Judge Sotomayor will have an effect on Obama for one or perhaps two terms as president, she will have an effect on the people for years to come. It seems President Obama is nearly always in a rush to get things done, the affairs of government should never be decided in a rush. Such decisions are to lasting to be made instantaneously.

One question I would ask Judge Sotomayor if I were part of the process is how a decision pertaining to a single state [Texas] became the law of the land when no law was ever passed by congress. I’m referring to “Roe v Wade” not only wasn’t Roe v Wade a law it was only an opinion. The Supreme Courts decision violated the US constitutions tenth amendment and the Texas constitution. The United States Congress has never had the guts to address the issue leaving us with the high court decision allowing deliberate and un-prosecuted murder of the most innocent among us. Those infants didn’t ask to be born and I’m sure they didn’t expect to be murdered.

While attending an informal discussion on the judicial process Judge Sotomayor stated [with a wink,] judges don’t make law they see that laws are upheld. All judges at one time or another are activists, they can’t help themselves. For the millions of law on the books there’s always that one situation that isn’t covered. No judge can hold up a conviction because the law is ambiguous. If convictions of criminals depended on a final scintilla’s of evidence being produced then the only safe place for the public would be in the prisons, sometimes judicial activism is justified.

Judicial activism should always be tempered by the wants of the people not by what others think they need. It’s easier to put on a black robe and play God than it is to play Solomon in that same black robe. It seems the more pseudo intellectuals that go to work for the government the more restrictive our lives become. Washington has become a land unto it’s self, the only purpose the general public serves in their minds is as a piggy bank for the Washingtonians benefit, we pay they play or so it seems. Much of this government elitism has been crated by an over zealous over active Supreme Court making rulings that violate the constitution.

We’ve meet our nemesis and it is us. We have become a nation of over indulgent spenders who see no limits of the wants as apposed to the needs of what we really deserve. The platinum credit card has become our God, now our God is demanding his / her due. The credit faucet has been turned off the day of retribution has arrived.

It’s the Supreme Courts job to keep tabs on congress to make sure what they propose is in keeping with the spirit of the constitution. Unfortunately the Supreme Court can’t circumvent the system, they can’t act except in emergencies until a case has gone through the lower courts. Someone must start a lengthy process to get to the high court. Let’s hope if Judge Sotomayor is confirmed she understands what the purpose of the court is, to dispense equal justice for all not just those she may empathize with. Rich, poor privileged or underprivileged we deserve the courts services be administered equally.

Presidents and congress are temporary at the voter’s discretion. Justices are permanent or until they die or retire, that’s why it’s imperative the right people with the right temperament be selected.

Politics has no place in the Supreme Court, the courts decisions should be based on the constitution and what is best to the public at large according to the law.

At this point I have no opinion [pro or con] on the qualifications of Judge Sotomayor. I’m opposed to any references to her gender or ethnicity in determining her ability to be fair and just. For those who say she must be treated differently because she’s a Hispanic woman I say if that’s the case then she isn’t qualified to be on the court.

Let the confirmation hearings be fair and extensive leaving no legitimate stone unturned. If she qualifies good for her, if not let us move on to the next candidate without ranker.

e-mail ken-hughes@comcast.net

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