Friday, June 13, 2008

How could you Kennedy!?

In a five-four decision the U.S. supreme court has granted the prisoners at Guantamno Bay to petiton for access to U.S. courts. While this does not mean that they will have access to U.S. courts it leaves the decision up to a judge. Thereby taking it away from our President and our elected officals which both agreed on how the tribuals should preceed. This is the first time in history a court has overruled both the President and the Congress on the conduct of the war during the war. The court had disagreed with one or the other, but never when both agreed.

I knew this decision would be five-four but I thought Justice Kennedy would come down on the side of protecting the U.S. and plain common sense. However this is just the latest in a series of rulings that have outraged conservatives.

Anthony Kennedy was appointed by President Reagan in 1988. Since then he has baffled conservatives with his opinions in support of the Kelo decision, which extended the defination of public use to include knocking down a house to build a hotel to increase tax revenues for the government. Public use before that meant roads, hospitals, dams, police stations, etc. He also ruled on the side on the majority in Ashcroft Vs. Free Speech Coalition. The court in this case ruled that simulated virtual child pornography was protected under the first amendment. Kennedy wrote for the majority. Here is part of his opinion: "Child pornography is not necessarily without value, but it is illegal because of the harm that making and distributing it necessarily inflicts upon children. Ferber expressly allowed virtual child pornography as an alternative that could preserve whatever literary value child pornography might arguably have while at the same time mitigating the harm caused by making it. The CPPA would eliminate this distinction and punish people for engaging in what had heretofore been a legal alternative." The final thing I will mention is Kennedy citing International Law in his opinion Roper Vs. Simmons which held that excutions of minors and the mentality ill were illegal. No matter if you agree with his decision or not a U.S. Justice should not be turning to international laws to draft his opinion in a U.S. court. I'm sure France doesn't check our laws before making a decision about a case in their country.

The decision of the Supreme Court on June 12, 2008 may turn into America's greatest defeat in the War on Terror. We know that these terrorist cannot defeat us on the battlefield. We've seen this time and time again, and are now begining to see it in Iraq. However give them high-priced ACLU lawyers and access to American courts, where they will without a doubt spend most of their time railing against America, and who know what will happen. There's a chance they will be released and sent back out where they will kill more Americans. What if these people are released by American courts then come back to conduct an major terrorist attack on our own soil. The Justices who are the majority of this decision will one day regret the chaos they have unleashed upon the country. I agree with Justice Scalia whose dissent, here it is.

From the Dissent of Scalia:
Today the Court warps our Constitution in a way that goes beyond the narrow issue of the reach of the Suspension Clause, invoking judicially brainstormed separation of-powers principles to establish a manipulable "functional" test for the extraterritorial reach of habeas corpus (and, no doubt, for the extraterritorial reach of other constitutional protections as well). It blatantly misdescribes important precedents, most conspicuously Justice Jackson's opinion for the Court in Johnson v. Eisentrager. It breaks a chain of precedent as old as the common law that prohibits judicial inquiry into detentions of aliens abroad absent statutory authorization. And, most tragically, it sets our military commanders the impossible task of proving to a civilian court, under whatever standards this Court devises in the future, that evidence supports the confinement of each and every enemy prisoner.

1 comment:

  1. As I wrote on my blog, McCain could win the election on this issue alone. All he has to do is say that if he is elected, he will ignore this Supreme Court decision.