From the Left: Activist Judges

Justin Goetz

Justin Goetz

The only time judicial activism is used as a term is when someone describes a court’s ruling that they do not agree with, especially if the Right does not agree with it. No one even knows a true definition of this “activism.” Some say that it is a court ruling on a controversy based purely upon its political agenda, or it’s when a court overrules a law of Congress as unconstitutional.

But the courts have used, in every modern court case ever decided, some court precedent or element of English legal tradition which they applied as justification for their case decision. They aren’t pulling this stuff out of their behinds.

Just look at the most purely “activist” court decision ever decided – Brown v. Board of Education (1954) – the case that made school segregation unconstitutional. The U.S. Supreme Court threw out all previous court law on the issue for what was termed at that time to be “a liberal political agenda,” going against the Congress’ wishes, and scaring the holy hell out of American bigots everywhere.

Yet today, both the Left and the Right herald that decision as being one of the most important, and beneficial, ever made by the Court.

So let us be honest, judicial activism is a red herring. If you do not like the way in which a court case is decided, do not just call it “judicial activism.” Understand the law, read the court’s opinion, see where they are coming from, and then give a LEGAL REASON why you disagree beyond a two-word derogatory.

Of course, we could make the problem go away and just allow the Right to create legislation that blocks courts from even hearing cases regarding particular political issues, like civil unions and the Pledge of Allegiance, under the idea of combating activism. Oh, but that would be “activism” too, wouldn’t it? Shucks …

#1.884029:1661942133.jpg:Goetz, Justin.jpg:Justin Goetz, From the Left: