Tuesday, August 26, 2003

That Phrase: I am still, honestly, puzzling out whether I believe that the monement could stand, hypothetically, on symbolic legal grounds. I think there's a case. But you both used this particular string of words that goes, with variation, like this:
A judge may not use his office as a pedestal from which to trumpet his beliefs.
Really? You both believe that? Or is it that, because of the First Amendment, the judge may use that pedestal to trumpet any beliefs he wishes, so long as they are not religious? The tenets of modern left-liberalism make up a religion, with articles of faith (the magic of "diversity"), dogma (PC), punishment of heresy (shouting down dissenters as racist, homophobic misogynists), and a canon of hagiographized saints (Kennedy, King, Gandhi, Margaret Sanger, Sojourner Truth, etc., etc.). Yet you don't have to look very far to find judges who are more than happy to trumpet these principles from the bench. This is how we ended up with a legal system wherein the burglar sues the homeowner when he falls on the rickety back staircase while breaking and entering. This is how we ended up with enormous lawsuits against legal products (cigarettes, guns, Big Macs) that seek the payment of vast sums, though treading carefully to keep the product itself from being declared illegal (which would kill the golden goose). This is why plaintiffs go venue shopping. This is why we had Florida in 2000, for god's sake, why the Florida Court saw one wholly extra-legal (and unattainable) principle as the highest good -- namely, the principle of the "voter's intention."

Sorry to be kick-starting a rant here. I'll take my meds now. Look, I don't particularly see a place for religion in jurisprudence, but I also don't think we should be fooling ourselves. The point of the First Amendment is to not subject non-believers to the articles of faith in which they hold no belief, to judge them by laws that do not rely on faith for their derivation and justification. And judges "reason" from foolish, misinformed, illogical principles every damn day, whether their god is Yahweh or Social Justice (whatever the hell that means) or Diversity (ditto). Hell, at least Yahweh left a book with laws and principles in it. I've never heard a social justice advocate give any principle other than "It's just not fair" which, true as it may be in a given situation, is not a basis for proper jurisprudential thought. Every judge you appear before in court eats, sleeps, and defecates like the rest of us, and is just as likely to be an idiot, a bigot, a holy roller, or a PC whacko as anyone else. And, thus, thinking that religion, as we know it, is a singular threat to a fair judiciary is foolish and blind to the spirit of the First Amendment.

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