- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Down with the judicial activism

The issues raised by Bruce Fein in his June 6 Commentary column, “Alabama insurrection,” are extremely important and should debated further. Mr. Fein starts by reporting that Associate Justice Tom Parker of the Alabama Supreme Court has urged his judicial colleagues to resist “obviously wrong” decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court and thus to refuse to use those decisions as precedent. Judges are sworn, Justice Parker notes, to uphold the Constitution, which is a higher duty than following decisions of the Supreme Court that are contrary to the Constitution. Mr. Fein rightly concludes that anarchy and confusion would follow if judges refused to follow the decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court.

However, I believe Mr. Fein did not sufficiently analyze the consequences if judges do follow legal precedent that is contrary to the Constitution. Putting the alternative in terms as direct as I can: We would be sitting idly by as our Constitution and its scheme of democratic government is abandoned. This is worse than enduring some anarchy and confusion.

Article I, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution expressly states that “all” legislative power is vested in Congress, which consists of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Note that the Supreme Court is not given any legislative power.

As a result, the courts act unconstitutionally when they go beyond interpreting the Constitution and laws of the United States and instead make law (i.e., they exercise legislative power). Justice Parker’s concern was aroused after the U.S. Supreme Court decided a case not on the basis of the Constitution, but rather on the basis of “evolving standards of decency.”

The Supreme Court asserted that it is uniquely capable of taking the moral pulse of the nation. This obviously is not true, particularly when elected legislatures are, by definition, more attuned to the people of this nation than is the unelected Supreme Court.

How’s that for a dilemma?

I have no problem with the Supreme Court properly finding laws unconstitutional if, in fact, the court uses the Constitution as the basis for its action.

There is one way this nation can extricate itself from the dilemma caused by activist judges making law. The people of this nation should let justices and judges in all courts know that judicial activism is unwelcome and will not be tolerated or honored. The president should not nominate, and the Senate should not confirm, justices or judges who espouse judicial activism.

ROBERT V. SCHNABEL

Severna Park, Md.

Illegal huddled masses

I would like to respond to Arturo Sarukhan’s column “Against the wall” (Commentary, Monday). First, the comparison between the Berlin Wall and the U.S. border fence authorized by Congress is misleading. The Berlin Wall was meant to keep East German and other Soviet peoples from leaving their communist “paradise.” The fence along the Mexican border is meant to put a stop to a tremendous invasion of this country by illegal aliens who threaten the fabrics — both economic and cultural — of the United States.

To praise, as this article does, these invaders as “bold and hardworking” people and to assert that they are “critical to the success of the American economy” is to paint a false picture and provide more evidence of the disregard of Mexican politicos for the sovereignty of the United States.

The argument, so dear to supporters of illegal aliens, that the euphemistically “undocumented” are hard workers is an insult to American workers, who work hard indeed, pay their taxes, obey the law and do not invade other countries to get something for nothing.

When the writer declares that these illegals represent a loss to Mexico and a gain to the United States, we should respond with one voice: This is a country of laws that will accept future residents according to its needs, and its own evaluation of such individuals and will not allow interference by foreign agents.

PHILLIP B. ABRAHAM

Alexandria

When the “huddled masses” came to the United States, they came legally, and they assimilated. They took citizenship tests and became Americans. They did not sneak over unmanned borders with the help of a foreign government. They did not use counterfeit, stolen or fraudulent documents. The “huddled masses” had proper immigration documents.

It isn’t just about security. It is about illegality. It is about destruction of our infrastructure and taxpayer monies used to support illegal aliens’ medical care and education and the monetary burden they place on our society, into which they often fail to assimilate.

If the illegal aliens want to “earn an honest wage for a full day’s work,” they must submit an honest application and wait for an honest entry/work permit. Let them come with legally obtained papers. Let them cross at the proper border crossings.

Illegal aliens are not critical to the success of the American economy. To say employers can’t get Americans to take certain jobs is a lie. Americans hold many of the same jobs the immigrants do — the difference is that Americans won’t do them for less than minimum wage.

If illegal Mexican aliens want their rights protected, let them stay in Mexico. Illegal aliens (Mexican or otherwise) in the United States have no rights. Our Constitution does not grant them any rights. The rights under the Constitution are granted to citizens of the United States.

A poem by Emma Lazarus is engraved on a tablet within the pedestal of the Statute of Liberty, which ends with the words, “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” It is a lovely thought, but that was then, and this is now. Now, we cannot support the current huddle (12 million to 20 million) of illegal aliens and the estimated future huddle (100 million by 2020). I am for reasonable legal immigration, but the “huddled masses” of illegal aliens and the hordes that will come are just too many.

MILDRED M. FISCHER

Fredericksburg, Va.

9/11: The message

Diana West’s Friday Op-Ed column, “A war that isn’t,” illuminates the history of evasive politics and appeasement through the centuries.

I am of Greek descent, of forefathers who witnessed the fall of Constantinople (seat of the Byzantine Empire) to the Ottoman Turks, who dominated Greece, the Balkans and Asia Minor for 500 years. During their rule, millions of Christians converted to Islam for whatever cause. My forefathers did not.

The fall of Byzantium would not have happened if the Western churches had heeded the cries of the royal families and clergy of the Eastern Orthodox Church, who for 50 years pleaded with the West to assist them against the warring Turks, and, ironically, against marauding Crusaders who were trying to wrest the Holy Land from Islam.

Miss West is right on the button when she says the administration and public opinion are taking a “respective position” against the jihadists and Iran — no thanks to the fainthearted media, feigning Democrats and faithless liberals. I hope she and Tony Blankley will continue the fight in their columns against defeatism and appeasement.

Finally, it took a Pearl Harbor to get the Americans involved in World War II. What do our appeasers think September 11 was?

C. COLLIER

Potomac

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