“Originalism”

Distinguished Group Of 25 Historians Advocating Removal Of Donald Trump Presidential Candidacy Under 14th Amendment Section Three Of The Constitution

The upcoming Supreme Court case regarding whether Donald Trump should be removed from ballots in Colorado and nationwide for the Presidential Election of 2024 will be argued this Thursday, and a distinguished group of 25 historians has submitted briefs supporting Colorado in the case Trump V Anderson.

Among the reputable historians giving views supportive of such action are:

Allan J. Lichtman of American University
Nell Irvin Painter of Princeton University
James McPherson of Princeton University
Thomas C. Holt of the University of Chicago
Brooks D. Simpson of Arizona State University
Lawrence Powell of Tulane University
Peter C. Hoffer of University of Georgia
Steve Hahn of New York University

There are a multitude of conservative thinkers and authors who also believe Trump inspired the 2021 US Capitol Insurrection, and should be banned under the 14th Amendment Section 3.

The question is whether the conservative dominated US Supreme Court will follow through on their beliefs in “Textualism” and “Originalism”, or whether they will demonstrate their hypocrisy, with most observers thinking the latter will happen!

The reputation of the Court as an institution, and of its nine members, is at stake.

Associate Justice Clarence Thomas should recuse himself in this case, since his wife was involved in the Insurrection.

And Chief Justice John Roberts should want his Court to be seen in history as reputable!

Earlier Courts unanimously repudiated Richard Nixon in US V Nixon (1974), and Bill Clinton in Clinton V Jones (1997), so the present Court has a heavy burden to deal with for history!

Away For Two Weeks, And The World Changes, Not For The Better! :(

Having just returned from my vacation with my older son after watching nine baseball games at eight baseball stadiums from Washington DC to Chicago, it is clear while I have been away that the nation and the world have changed, and not for the better.

Russia under Vladimir Putin is in turmoil after a challenge to the government by a militia group, creating more international instability. And demonstrations in France have gone large after the killing of an Algerian Arab French citizen by police, making clear that racism is alive and well in not just the United States but world wide!

And then, domestically, the Supreme Court has shown once again just how extreme they are, and presenting a constitutional crisis, as the Bush I and II appointees, along with the Trump appointees, have declared war on precedent and progress, trying to bring America back to the 18th century “originalism”, which many scholars make clear is totally preposterous!

The majority Court Justices have been shown to have massive financial and ideological conflicts of interest with no means for accountability, and with Chief Justice John Roberts losing all of whatever reasonable reputation he has had over the years, with his refusal to testify on ethics violations by himself and the other Republican Justices, particularly, but not only, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito.

Between the attack on abortion rights a year ago, and now the end of affirmative action; the denial of student college debt relief; and allowing religion to interfere with the basic human rights of gays and transgenders, and arguably, other groups that any person in any business or industry could decide to refuse to interact with in daily life, is clearly the most dangerous time in constitutional history since the Civil War!

Crazy, Tumultuous America 158 Years After The End Of The Civil War!

Today, April 9, marks the end of the American Civil War in 1865, 158 years ago!

Today, more than a century and a half since then, America is, arguably, more divided than it has ever been, including the tumultuous 1960s!

Now, the South, once Democratic and hardline on the issue of racial discrimination, is Republican and hardline on the issue of racial discrimination!

Now, the nation that would not give women the right to vote or basic legal rights in the 19th century, is in the process of stripping away a woman’s right to control her own body, and decide whether she wishes to have children every time she engages in sexual intercourse, by choice or by force!

Now, we have a former President, Donald Trump, who has abused power massively, much more than even Richard Nixon a half century ago, and the party of Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt and Dwight D. Eisenhower bows to him in a cult like fashion, ready to put him back to power and destroy all of the progress of American democracy in the past century or more!

America is on the cusp of the possible destruction of the Constitution and the rule of law, and is on a tear to provoke violence and bloodshed in the determination that the Second Amendment, which has been horribly distorted, shall rule supreme, and that anyone, no matter how mentally disturbed he or she is, is entitled to weapons of war to use on American streets!

America, a nation built on the contributions of immigrants, is once again promoting nativism against people of different colors, languages, customs, and religions, with no sense of the dignity of all human beings!

America, a nation built on freedom of religion, and separation of church and state, is now seeing religious extremists attempting to promote a national theology of white supremacy Christianity, leading to antisemitism, anti Muslim, anti Hindu, and all other religious beliefs in the name of a supposed absolute deity!

America, a nation built on three equal and balanced government branches, is now witnessing the judicial branch gone amuck, in its determination to promote an absolute, narrow minded version of the Constitution–Originalism–which refers on the nation as it was in 1787 at the time of the Constitutional Convention, as if the 236 years since then are an aberration of the original principles of the Founding Fathers!

A nation which does not grow and change is a nation in decline, and in a world where there are massive threats that create danger, that can only undermine the nation which has been a model for the world of the possibilities of expansion of basic human rights!

This is a time for reflection, and for determination NOT to allow the evil forces which surround us to achieve their wicked goals!

Constitution Day: 235 Years And Counting, But Question About Its Survival In Future!

Today is Constitution Day, the day in 1787 when the Founding Fathers signed the Constitution.

No one in their right mind would think that those who signed the Constitution believed there should be no changes ever made, or that what was in the Constitution was cement that could not be altered.

And yet, today, we have a majority Supreme Court which thinks we should go back to 1787, what is called “Originalism”.

This is pure insanity, and undermines the ability of government to adapt to changing times.

Most of what is considered “normal” today in constitutional terms is far from just the original document, and reflects the changing times.

And we are faced with a threat, greater than the Civil War or the Great Depression and World War II, to our ability to maintain a constitutional government based on the rule of law, as Donald Trump and his minions are a dire threat to America’s democratic future!

Supreme Court Most Right Wing Since 1931!

The last time the US Supreme Court was as right wing in its decisions as it has been in 2022 is 1931, 91 years ago!

The nation is in danger from a Court which is promoting anti abortion, pro gun rights, promoting expansion of religion in public places, and making it harder to address climate change!

The conservative majority is advocating “Originalism”, which threatens the entire constitutional decisions from the New Deal onward, and there is concern that the next Supreme Court term will be even more controversial and confrontational than the present one has been!

First Time Ever A Constitutional Right Granted Has Been Taken Away: Abortion Rights!

This has been a very emotional, disturbing 24 hours, causing the rise in blood pressure in millions of Americans!

The Supreme Court has taken away abortion rights after 49 years, as the right wing extremists on the Court, appointed by Presidents George W. Bush and Donald Trump, both of whom lost the popular vote in Presidential elections, have decided women should not control their own bodies.

This has never happened before, to take away a right granted, and to say that abortion is not in the Constitution, is a ridiculous argument! For instance, political parties, Cabinet members, end of African American slavery, rights to vote for women and racial minorities, Social Security, Medicare, and a massive number of other activities and basic functions of government, all came AFTER the writing of the Constitution 235 years ago! Originalism is preposterous in running a goverment centuries later!

The Trump appointed Justices lied in their confirmation hearings when they said Roe V. Wade was established law, as if it was, there is no justification for making women bear children, especially those who have been victims of rape or incest, or where life and well being of the mother is at stake!

The Court Justices lying are grounds for their impeachment and removal, as they tricked Senators who voted for them, including Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Susan Collins of Maine!

The Bush Presidencies Gave Us The Two Worst Supreme Court Justices: Thomas And Alito!

The legacy of George H. W. Bush, and his son George W. Bush, gave us, as all Presidencies do, positives and negatives in the long run of history.

But it is now clear that each of the Bushes gave the nation the two worse Supreme Court Justices in modern American history, both with an extremely narrowminded and vicious streak!

This is referring to the senior Bush appointment of Clarence Thomas in 1991, and to the junior Bush appointment of Samuel Alito in 2006.

Both Justices are so called “originalists’, who believe the Constitution must be understood in 1787 perspective, and do not accept the idea that 235 years have passed, and the situation of many groups, including the issues of gender, race, and sexuality, along with the concept of privacy, needs to be updated.

So we are on the cusp of a likely Supreme Court decision denying every woman the right to control her own body, whether a pregnancy comes about by rape or incest, as well as the danger to the life of the mother!

It also seems an opening not only to outlaw all abortions, but make it a criminal act of the mother and the doctor and hospital staff, and does not consider the effects on all women, whether pregnant or not.

Only a heartless autocrat with hate and vindictiveness in his or her heart would wish to impose tight government regulation on the private lives of women, or really, even men, who are affected by the imposition of a Judicial dictatorship, taking away a right guaranteed for 50 years, an unheard of reversal!

So the Bushes will go down in history in a very negative fashion for, whether realizing it or not, imposing religious views and personal vendettas of Supreme Court Justices they appointed on more than half of the population!

Conservative Counter-Revolution Against 20th-21st Century Constitutional Law!

America is facing a conservative counter-revolution against 20th-21st Century Constitutional law!

We have Supreme Court Justices and their right wing ideologues who wish to bring back the 18th century Constitutional Convention of 1787, a time when women were totally under the control of their fathers, husbands, or other male relatives.

They also want to bring America back to a time when African Americans were slaves, or if that is not tenable, then back to the era of segregation and lynching.

They also want to bring America back to a time when interracial marriage and gay marriage were forbidden.

They also want to bring America back to a time when there was no right of privacy, because such a term was not mentioned in the Constitutional Convention or in the document produced for ratification in 1787.

The concept of originalism is preposterous, that all constitutional law since 1787 is null and void unless it applies to the exact language adopted 235 years ago!

It would put America back to a time when democracy was only for white male Protestants of property!

This battle is one that must be fought all the way to victory, as otherwise, how is America any different than an authoritarian dictatorship, run with the backing of powerful corporations and wealthy people, and based on the concept of theocracy, allowing so called “religious” values to dictate the lives of 330 million Americans?

Tonight’s First Presidential Debate: The Middle Class Guy Vs The Phony Billionaire And Bully

Former Vice President Joe Biden enters tonight’s first Presidential debate in Cleveland against President Donald Trump in a position of strength. He is far ahead in most state polls, including in the Midwest where Hillary Clinton lost the election in 2016.

Biden is the middle class guy who has had struggles and tragedies in his life, much like the vast majority of Americans. He possesses naturally great compassion, empathy, decency, and tons of government experience as US Senator for 36 years and as one of the two best Vice Presidents in American history, alongside Walter Mondale.

Biden comes in with public opinion polls showing great strength for him among college educated voters of both genders; suburban women; African Americans; Latinos except for Cubans; Asian Americans; Jews; Social Justice Catholics; mainline Protestants; moderates; Independents; young voters; and a small sliver of Trump voters in 2016 who realize Donald Trump is a phony billionaire and bully!

Putting Biden in the Oval Office will give us a President with more background knowledge and expertise than any President when he entered the Presidency—more than Lyndon B. Johnson or George H. W. Bush.

Biden knows world leaders and can restore US foreign policy so that foreign allies can against trust our government.

Biden can restore much of the damage done to our domestic infrastructure and our government agencies that are so necessary to continue the advancements of the New Deal, Great Society, and the later accomplishments of Presidents of both parties from Richard Nixon to Barack Obama!

We will have a President who does not lie 20,000 times in three and a half years;

who will not ignore medicine and science;

who will pay his fair share of taxes;

who will not cheat on his wife with other women;

who will pick judges who understand that originalism is the wrong approach to law;

who will work to cross the aisle when possible, instead of constant insults and bullying of opponents and critics;

who will have a Vice President, Kamala Harris, who gives us confidence should there ever be an emergency;

who will restore faith in our basic values of democracy and freedom;

who will bring back honor and decency to the Oval Office;

and who will support total exposure of all crimes committed by the present incumbent of the White House!

Robert Bork, Controversial And Rejected Supreme Court Nominee, Dead: Brings Back Memories And Reflections On Effect On Supreme Court

Twenty five years ago, President Ronald Reagan nominated Robert Bork, former Solicitor General and Acting Attorney General under President Richard Nixon, as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. His death was announced today by his son.

Bork had become controversial for firing Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox during the Watergate Scandal, as ordered by President Nixon. But he also became controversial for the judicial viewpoint known as “originalism”, which contended that judges and Justices should always interpret the Constitution solely on the basis of what the Founding Fathers enunciated in the 18th century, and not consider changing times in their decisions.

This alarmed progressives, liberals, labor supporters, African Americans, women, environmentalists, and others who saw him as a threat to progress on race and gender, and also on privacy rights, including abortion and contraceptives, of which he vehemently was on record as an opponent of such rights not contained in the original Constitution. Ted Kennedy and Joe Biden became major critics, and his nomination became a massive controversy, and made it that future Supreme Court nominees would be examined with a “fine tooth comb”, making them less willing to be as forthcoming as Bork was in the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings.

Bork also believed in no limitation on police rights, and thought evolution should not be taught in public schools as fact, therefore promoting fundamentalist religion as part of the curriculum of schools. He was confrontational in his approach, giving as good as he received in the pursuing debate. He displayed no problem with the growth of monopolies, and had no interest in the rights of gay men and women.

After a bitter battle, he was rejected, and this affected the future Court, as Anthony Kennedy became the new appointee the following year, and now after almost 25 years on the Court, has become in recent years the “swing” vote on many cases, therefore having a major impact on constitutional law.

Do not forget that Kennedy’s vote on Gay Privacy rights, in Lawrence V. Texas in 2003, transformed the gay rights movement, and it is thought likely that his vote will call for the allowance of gay marriage when the cases presently before the Court come up for consideration in March, and decision in June!

There is no way that Robert Bork would have been a “swing” vote on the Court, and might very well have been MORE conservative and right wing than either Antonin Scalia or Clarence Thomas have turned out to be, so it was a great moment when Bork, with his radical right agenda, wishing to turn back the decisions of the Earl Warren and Warren Burger Courts that expanded individual rights from the 1950s through the 1980s, was soundly rejected!