Thursday, April 19, 2007

The hypocrisy of "strict constructionists" laid bare

Front paged at Booman Tribune, ePluribus Media and My Left Wing. Recommended at Daily Kos

Time and again, we have heard Bush talk about appointing “strict constructionists” as judges and that “activist judges” should not be making laws or expanding the role of the federal government.

There is example after example where this isn’t true – whether it be all of the pork that the rubber stamp republican congress had passed, whether it was the giveaways to the drug companies through the Medicare bill, whether it was the other handouts to Big Oil, or through throwing millions of federal dollars at “abstinence only” programs which not only have proven to be failures but have gone to religious extremists and fundamentalists whose agenda has no place receiving federal funding.

And the issue of yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling regarding certain abortion bans is obviously a highly emotional and personal issue for many millions of Americans. While I don’t want to really talk about the emotional or personal aspect of it here, I will say that I find it absolutely disgusting that the Supreme Court has found it acceptable to so easily put American citizens’ lives at risk and to deny a medically necessary procedure that could save such life. Especially in an instance where it is obvious that the American citizen would not otherwise want to terminate her pregnancy except in the most extreme of circumstances - to save her own life.

That being said, the entire point that republicans, conservatives and religious extremists have made with respect to why they feel that Roe vs. Wade was wrongly decided is that the federal government has no right to rule in this matter or to impose a federal will on something that is not specifically and expressly provided for in the United States Constitution.

Yet (as I said yesterday during Don’t Hijack My Thread!), here we are, with the same conservatives, republicans and religious extremists celebrating this decision to uphold a FEDERAL law that imposes restrictions on an American citizen’s basic rights. This is hypocrisy. This is the truth about their agenda laid bare for the entire world and country to see. This was NEVER about federalism. This was about imposing restrictions on women and asserting the federal government’s ability to impose its will on American citizens – without the consent of the American citizens. EVEN if the life of such citizen is at risk.

If the Supreme Court ruling yesterday was to uphold a state ban on such a medical procedure, then, while still abhorrent, it would at least be consistent with the argument of Federalism.

However, in arguing “federalism” as a reason to restrict the right to make private medical decisions, the exact opposite argument is being used and presented to use a federal law to restrict the right to make private medical decisions - even if the life of such American citizen is at risk.

Of course, there are so many other issues surrounding this decision, as well as the logic or reasoning behind it. There are so many issues associated with a “big brother government” dictating what people can or cannot do or what medical decisions they can or cannot make.

But right now, the completely hypocritical edifice of “logic” and reason, as well as the argument used to enforce a federal law to restrict the rights of American citizens – when there is no place in the Constitution that would provide for the restriction of such rights by the Federal government - is laid bare.

Make no mistake – there was no agenda of “federalism”. There was a very different agenda here. And while Congress certainly can enact a law that would restore the right for a woman (or her doctor) to take any necessary steps to save her live, that is really not the point. The point is that if the government has no right to impose its will on American citizens outside of what is specifically enumerated in the US Constitution, then this law that was upheld by the Supreme Court yesterday also goes against the US Constitution.

This needs to be put out there as we discuss the horrific decision by the Supreme Court. This needs to be part of the discussion going forward. This undermine the entire credibility and basis for the argument that this is a state issue.

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