That was 1957
THIS is 2013:
ASHEVILLE With a potentially ground-breaking decision on gay marriage expected next week, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said Friday morning that he and other judges should stop setting moral standards concerning homosexuality and other issues.
We aren’t qualified, Scalia said.
Oh really? Then who is? Maybe, when he had the chance, Tony should have asked God — seated here at his far left.
God, after all, was once ambivalent.
These days not so much.
In a speech titled “Mullahs of the West: Judges as Moral Arbiters,” the outspoken and conservative jurist told the N.C. Bar Association that constitutional law is threatened by a growing belief in the “judge moralist.” In that role, judges are bestowed with special expertise to determine right and wrong in such matters as abortion, doctor-assisted suicide, the death penalty and same-sex marriage.
Scalia said that approach presents two problems: Judges are not moral experts, and many of the moral issues now coming before the courts have no “scientifically demonstrable right answer.”
And we all know how Republicans feel about science, don’t we.
As such, he said, it’s a community’s job to decide what it finds morally acceptable, not the courts’.
Well here’s a perfect example of that
The justice’s 35-minute speech at the bar association’s annual meeting was met with two rounds of applause, laughter and, afterward, some pointed questions.
During his speech, Scalia acknowledged that his opinion is not universally shared. Many legal scholars and judges – including some of his colleagues on the Supreme Court – believe in a “living Constitution” that reflects “evolving standards of decency.” This also has given rise to what Scalia decried as a sprawling application of the provisions of human rights and equal protection under the law.
Nothing worse than sprawl — right Tony?
In response to a question, he said he does not ascribe to a Constitution locked away from change. The law must evolve to deal with new phenomena, he said, but it should do so while remaining firmly moored in its founding principles. And most moral issues, he added, don’t qualify as new.
One of those moral debates – gay marriage – is now before the high court. The justices are expected to rule next week on two same-sex cases. One involves the federal Defense of Marriage Act; the other, California’s Proposition 8. Both oppose gay marriage.
A majority of states, including both Carolinas, have same-sex marriage bans in place. But polls show that most Americans now support a gay couple’s right to marry.
Scalia, known for his provocative comments and writings since being appointed in 1986, is barred from publicly discussing pending cases. But during his half-hour speech at the Grove Park Inn on Friday, the 77-year-old frequently listed homosexuality among the issues that should be decided by the public and not unelected judges.
His comments during the March oral arguments for the same-sex marriage cases followed a similar bent. “When did it become unconstitutional to exclude homosexual couples from marriage?” he asked.
His earlier statements about the legal rights of gay couples are even more outspoken. During an October speech to the American Enterprise Institute, Scalia described the death penalty, abortion and “homosexual sodomy” as “easy” constitutional issues. “Homosexual sodomy? Come on. For 200 years it was criminal in every state.”
And in an dissenting opinion from a 2003 case that overturned Texas’ anti-sodomy law, he said Americans have the clear right to enforce traditional moral restrictions against homosexual behavior “to protect themselves from a lifestyle that they believe to be immoral and destructive.”
He also said rescinding “Sodomy” laws would lead to gay marriage.
Raleigh attorney John Sarratt said he expects the thoughts Scalia expressed Friday to be reflected in the judge’s upcoming opinion on gay marriage – that the courts should leave the existing laws alone.
During a question-and-answer period that followed the judge’s speech, Sarratt asked Scalia if he would have taken a similarly hands-off approach to “Brown v. Board of Education,” the legal cornerstone of school desegregation across the country.
Scalia said he would have voted with the majority on the case to create more educational opportunities for blacks. He added, however, that “a good result” doesn’t make for good law. Had the courts not interceded, he said, state leaders would have eventually removed the racial barriers.
The question is when, Sarratt said later.The Raleigh attorney said he enjoyed Scalia’s speech but didn’t agree with its central message.
“I tend to be outcome-based,” he said. “And if the outcome is equality for all people, then I’m for the courts moving in that direction, before the people are ready.”
John Lassiter, a former Charlotte City Council member who was sitting in the front row, said Scalia’s remarks were consistent with his longstanding “originalist” view of the Constitution and a restrained judiciary.
But what of “The American People”? Will Teh Ghey be “restrained” ie.
“Whaddaya say we go out on the boat and get smashed and make love on the beach and look up at the moon?”
“We stand together as Christians in defense of marriage and the family and society founded uponthem. While we come from a variety of communities and hold differing faith perspectives, we are united in our common faith in Jesus Christ. We acknowledge that differences exist between us on important matters of religious doctrine and practice. But, on the matter of marriage, we stand in solidarity. As a nation, we have lost our moral compass. As a result, we are losing true freedom. We affirm together that there is a moral basis to a free society. Though we live in a secular society, together we reject relativism andsecularism.We affirm that marriage and family have been inscribed by the Divine Architect into the order of creation. Marriage is ontologically between one man and one woman, ordered toward the unionof the spouses, open to children and formative of family. Family is the first vital cell of society; the first church, first school, first hospital, first economy, first government and first mediating institution of our social order. The future of a free and healthy society passes through marriage and the family. Marriage as existing solely between one man and one woman was not an idea manufactured bythe Christian Church. It precedes Christianity. Though affirmed, fulfilled, and elevated by Christian teaching, the truth that marriage can exist only between one man and one woman is not based on religion or revelation alone, but on the Natural Moral Law, written on the human heart and discernible through the exercise of reason. This claim of the existence of such a Natural Moral Law is the ground upon which every great civilization has been built. It is the source of every authentic human and civil rights movement. This Natural Moral Law gives us the norms we need to build truly human and humane societies and govern ourselves. It should also inform our positive law or we will become lawless and devolve into anarchy. Marriage is the preeminent and the most fundamental of all human social institutions. Civil institutions do not create marriage nor can they manufacture a right to marry for those who areincapable of marriage. In the words of the first book of the Bible, we read:
“it is not good for
man to be alone.” (Genesis 2:18) Society begins with marriage and the family .Like many other concerned Americans, we await the opinion of the Supreme Court of the United States on two cases which open up the possibility that the institution of marriage will be further
undermined by a judicial opinion. We pledge to stand together to defend marriage as what it is, a bond between one man and one woman, intended for life, and open to the gift of children. The institutions of civil government should defend marriage and not seek to undermine it. Government has long regulated marriage for the true common good. Examples, such as the age of consent, demonstrate such a proper regulation to ensure the free and voluntary basis of the marriage bond. Redefining the very institution of marriage is improper and outside the authority of the State. The Supreme Court has no authority to redefine marriage. If the Supreme Court becomes the tool by which marriage is redefined in the positive law of this nation, the precedent established will leave no room for any limitation on what can constitute such a redefined notion of marriage. Conferring a moral and legal equivalency to same-sex couples by legislative or judicial fiat also sends the message that children do not need a mother and a father. It undermines their fundamental rights and threatens their security, stability, and future. As Christian citizens united together, we will not stand by while the destruction of the institution of marriage unfolds in this nation we love. The Sacred Scriptures and unbroken teaching of the Church confirm that marriage is between one man and one woman. We stand together in solidarity to defend marriage and the family and society founded upon them. The effort to redefine marriage threatens the proper mediating role of the Church in society. Experience and history have shown us that if the government redefines marriage to grant a legal equivalency to same-sex couples, that same government will then enforce such an action with the police power of the State. This will bring about an inevitable collision with religious freedom and conscience rights. We cannot and will not allow this to occur on our watch. Religious freedom is the first freedom in the American experiment for good reason. Finally, the Supreme Court has no authority to redefine marriage and thereby weaken both the family and society. Unlike the Legislative Branch that has the power of the purse and the Executive Branch which has the figurative power of the sword, the Judicial Branch has neither. It must depend upon the Executive Branch for the enforcement of its decisions. As the Supreme Court acknowledged in the 1992 decision of Planned Parenthood v. Casey, its power rests solely upon the legitimacy of its decisions in the eyes of the people. If the Supreme Court were to issue a decision that redefined marriage or provided a precedent on which to build an argument to redefine marriage, the Supreme Court will thereby undermine its legitimacy. The Court will significantly decrease its credibility and impair the role it has assumed for itself as amoral authority. It will be acting beyond its proper constitutional role and contrary to the Natural Moral Law which transcends religions, culture, and time.As Christians united together in defense of marriage, we pray that this will not happen. But, make no mistake about our resolve. While there are many things we can endure, redefining marriage is so fundamental to the natural order and the true common good that this is the line we must draw and one we cannot and will not cross.”
IOW, they’re threatening Brazil !
Cue Pink Martini