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Home Main Forums General Discussion Howard Zinn Warned Us About the Supreme Court

  • N2Doc (9394 posts)
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    Howard Zinn Warned Us About the Supreme Court

    These are the facts. The Senate majority, which the Republican Party currently holds with 51 seats, presently represents 18 percent of the country’s population. Following Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation, four of the Supreme Court’s nine justices have been appointed by presidents who lost the popular vote. Two of those justices attended the same D.C.-area prep school.

    If the United States government faces a legitimacy crisis, it’s one that has been building for 18 years, if not longer than that. In 2000’s Bush v. Gore decision, five conservative justices determined that Florida could not conduct a recount of its heavily disputed election results—a decision that effectively handed the presidency to the Republican candidate. “Although we may never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year’s Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear,” John Paul Stevens, who was appointed by Gerald Ford, wrote in his dissent. “It is the Nation’s confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of law.”

    The naked politicization of the judiciary did not escape historian Howard Zinn. In 2005, after another former member of the Federalist Society, John Roberts, became the 17th chief justice of the United States, the activist and professor issued a warning to progressives about the power of the high court—one they might be wise to revisit on the heels of Kavanaugh’s ascension.

    “It would be naive to depend on the Supreme Court to defend the rights of poor people, women, people of color, dissenters of all kinds,” he wrote. “Those rights only come alive when citizens organize, protest, demonstrate, strike, boycott, rebel, and violate the law in order to uphold justice.”

     

    more

    https://www.truthdig.com/articles/howard-zinn-warned-us-about-the-supreme-court/

    Pastiche, Enthusiast, 3FingerBrown and 17 otherscaliny, Baba OhReally, pacalo, Passionate Progressive, kath, mrdmk, Ohio Barbarian, FourScore, h-32, BillZBubb, nevereVereven, Iwillnevergiveup, jwirr, ThomPaine, NV Wino, 99thMonkey, tk2kewl like this
    "But nothing ever changes unless there's some pain" - Tears For Fears "Goodnight Song"

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14 replies
  • Fire with Fire (1735 posts)
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    1. Key Point

    Zinn understood that it will take a lot more than just voting to change anything of significance.

     

    “Those rights only come alive when citizens organize, protest, demonstrate, strike, boycott, rebel, and violate the law in order to uphold justice.”

    • N2Doc (9394 posts)
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      2. Thus the incessant whining from the establishment about 'mobs' n/t

      "But nothing ever changes unless there's some pain" - Tears For Fears "Goodnight Song"
      • ThomPaine (6948 posts)
        Moderator

        3. The Constitution is essentially null and void. For one thing it doesn't apply

        • ThomPaine (6948 posts)
          Moderator

          4. to terrorists and the government has the power to deem who are terrorists

          • ThomPaine (6948 posts)
            Moderator

            5. And the Constitution is only as good as the SCOTUS's interpretation. We're Fucke

            • nevereVereven (5886 posts)
              Donor

              6. Owning the courts= owning the country. We are indeed fucked. eom

              Trump is a fool who may yet blunder us into war; the Dems and the Deep State cabal would give us war by design.

                                             
              • sadoldgirl (3035 posts)
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                10. And all this theater about Kavanaugh was hiding the fact that the Dems

                helped 15 conservative judges to the benches, from which the next

                justice may be chosen!

                • Enthusiast (16201 posts)
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                  14. Right. Schumer, the Republican masquerading as a Democrat.

                  "I got a great big pointed fang Which is my Zomby Toof My right foot's bigger than my other one is Like a reg'lar Zomby Hoof If I raid your dormitorium Don't try to remain aloof . . ." The Zombie Woof
      • Katashi (1391 posts)

        7. Wonder how long before the states flat out ignore SCOTUS rulings.

        Then will the civil war go hot?

        “He who can destroy a thing, controls a thing.” -Paul Atreides, DUNE
  • FourScore (497 posts)

    8. I love Howard Zinn. MUST READ – The People's History of the United States

  • mrdmk (1184 posts)

    9. Howard Zinn wrote this piece back October 2005. Interesting Read!

    Howard Zinn: Don’t Despair about the Supreme Court

    John Roberts sailed through his confirmation hearings as the new Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, with enthusiastic Republican support, and a few weak mutterings of opposition by the Democrats. Then, after the far right deemed Harriet Miers insufficiently doctrinaire, Bush nominated arch conservative Samuel Alito to replace Sandra Day O’Connor. This has caused a certain consternation among people we affectionately term “the left.”

    <snip>

    If the Constitution is the holy test, then a justice should abide by its provision in Article VI that not only the Constitution itself but “all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the Supreme Law of the Land.” This includes the Geneva Convention of 1949, which the United States signed, and which insists that prisoners of war must be granted the rights of due process.

    <snip>

    When the Constitution gets in the way of a war, it is ignored. When the Supreme Court was faced, during Vietnam, with a suit by soldiers refusing to go, claiming that there had been no declaration of war by Congress, as the Constitution required, the soldiers could not get four Supreme Court justices to agree to even hear the case. When, during World War I, Congress ignored the First Amendment’s right to free speech by passing legislation to prohibit criticism of the war, the imprisonment of dissenters under this law was upheld unanimously by the Supreme Court, which included two presumably liberal and learned justices: Oliver Wendell Holmes and Louis Brandeis.

    <snip>

    No Supreme Court, liberal or conservative, will stop the war in Iraq, or redistribute the wealth of this country, or establish free medical care for every human being. Such fundamental change will depend, the experience of the past suggests, on the actions of an aroused citizenry, demanding that the promise of the Declaration of Independence–an equal right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness–be fulfilled.

     

    so much more, link:  https://progressive.org/op-eds/howard-zinn-despair-supreme-court/

    If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit  WC Fields
    • ThomPaine (6948 posts)
      Moderator

      11. The Constitution is no better than the SC interpretation. No check on that.

      • mrdmk (1184 posts)

        13. The check is supposedly when the Congress and the President all sign a Bill

        Yet, the SC has in the past struck down bills just because they did not like them. You are correct about the interpretations by the SC.

        If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit  WC Fields
    • Two way street (4382 posts)
      Donor

      12. Decisions against the best interest of most Americans should be added

      as campaign issues for all coming elections.  Those voting for “Their Man or Woman” on the Supreme Court should be held accountable to the People, not just their constituents.