Tuesday, July 8, 2008

A Mockery Of Justice

A tidbit from Justice Kennedy: the Supreme Court's man in the middle by Michael Doyle:

In Boumediene v. Bush, Kennedy's 5-4 opinion extended habeas corpus rights to foreign prisoners seeking to challenge their detention at Guantanamo.

"It will almost certainly cause more Americans to be killed," a vehemently dissenting Justice Antonin Scalia said.
How can Antonin Scalia make such an irresponsible statement? How can a Supreme Court judge be against the rule of law? How can a Supreme Court judge have such little regard for personal liberty? This man is making a mockery of justice, and does not belong on the Supreme Court.

What is habeas corpus?

Britannica.com says it is:
…an ancient common-law writ, issued by a court or judge directing one who holds another in his custody to produce the body of the person before the court for some specified purpose. Although there have been and are many varieties of the writ, the most important is that used to correct violations of personal liberty by directing judicial inquiry into the legality of a detention. The habeas corpus remedy is recognized in the countries of the Anglo-American legal system but is generally not found in civil-law countries, although some of the latter have adopted comparable procedures.

The origins of the writ cannot be stated with certainty. Before the Magna Carta (1215), a variety of writs performed some of the functions of habeas corpus. During the Middle Ages habeas corpus was employed to bring cases from inferior tribunals into the king’s courts. The modern history of the writ as a device for the protection of personal liberty against official authority may be said to date from the reign of Henry VII (1485–1509), when efforts were made to employ it on behalf of persons imprisoned by the Privy Council. By the reign of Charles I, in the 17th century, the writ was fully established as the appropriate process for checking the illegal imprisonment of people by inferior courts or public officials.
Read the rest here.

Without some form of “protection of personal liberty against official authority”, what are we left with? Well, fascism comes to mind.

Here is part of what Britannica.com says about fascism:
Although fascist parties and movements differed significantly from each other, they had many characteristics in common, including extreme militaristic nationalism, contempt for electoral democracy and political and cultural liberalism, a belief in natural social hierarchy and the rule of elites, and the desire to create a Volksgemeinschaft (German: “people’s community”), in which individual interests would be subordinated to the good of the nation.
I respectfully submit to Antonin Scalia that more Americans will probably be killed BECAUSE of Guantanamo and the LACK of habeas corpus there. I know that if my mother, father, sister, or brother were detained there (with all their rights stripped away) I would be extremely angry at those holding them.

I am also deeply offended and insulted by Scalia’s fear-mongering in service to America’s “extreme militaristic nationalism.” A Supreme Court justice should not be making predictions that are not based on any factual evidence. Especially predictions that support a particular partisan position.

We talk often of the global economy. We need to talk more about global justice.

Antonin Scalia should resign from the Supreme Court. Someone who does not support justice for all does not belong there. Someone who has so little faith in our courts to convict the guilty does not belong there.

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