Carol Platt Liebau: Arrogating Power Unto Itself

Monday, June 27, 2005

Arrogating Power Unto Itself

The Supreme Court comes down with one of the most deplorably incoherent decisions imaginable. Apparently, a Kentucky court cannot display the Ten Commandments, but the Texas Capitol can.

With the Court's opinion, one thing is clear: These cases will continue to be decided on a subjective, case-by-case basis, with whatever judge one draws deciding whether the "motive" behind a particular display is "religious" (not OK) or historical (OK).

It's a decision with no discernible roots in any consistent constitutional interpretation. Not coincidentally, it couldn't be designed better if the left-wing justices had tried to come up with a system where outcomes would be both unpredictable and dependent on the personal views of the particular judge hearing the case. And that's great for judges who want to arrogate power to themselves; not so good for those of us who are increasingly tired of being ruled by an unaccountable, out-of-touch judiciary.

And by the way, it's interesting that Breyer is the only justice to have found himself in the majority both times. Could it be that, in his decision to permit the Texas display, he knew that the political uproar (and possibly backlash) wouldn't be worth it to the left, once mainstream Americans started to see every religious reference stripped from state (and federal) Capitol buildings?


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