Guns and abortion: Contradictory decisions, or consistent? – Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu, Hawaii 2022-06-25 06:35:00 –

They are the most intensely polarized problems in American life: abortion and guns. And the two major decisions of the Supreme Court over the two days did nothing but resolve them. A conservative judge in court has sparked a debate over whether history and the Constitution are faithful and consistent.

For some critics, the ruling is clear and represents a seriously damaging contradiction. How can a court justify limiting the state’s ability to regulate guns while expanding the state’s power to regulate abortion?

“The hypocrisy is intensifying, but the harm is endless,” said Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on Friday after the court announced a decision on abortion.

For supporters, court conservatives continue to adhere to the country’s founding principles and undo past mistakes.

Former Vice President Mike Pence said on Friday that the court had corrected a historic error when he revoked the right to abortion. On Twitter, he said the decision returned Americans the power to “govern themselves at the state level in a way that is consistent with their values ​​and aspirations.”

Opponents of the Roe v. Wade case, a controversial 1973 ruling in favor of the right to abortion, said that the Supreme Court at the time adapted and twisted the legal debate to suit its political position. He says he has done so to blame the majority of current judges.

The current conservative majority of members of the court have shown their thoughts in this week’s decision and are very consistent, sticking to the words of the founder of the country and the precedents of further history, and they. Proponents say.

In both decisions, the majority argue that if a right is stipulated in the US Constitution, the government’s regulatory standards for that right are very high. However, if rights are not explicitly stated, state and federal governments have more room to impose restrictions.

But for those who study the court, the reality is more complicated.

Many agree that the majority of judges follow at least consistent legal theory in making abortion and gun decisions for all disputes in the judgment.

Richard Albert, a professor of law at the University of Texas at Austin, said: “By the way, I’m not saying that’s right, but from their point of view, it’s completely consistent and consistent.”

But consistency cannot hide the fact that there has been an earthquake change in court since President Donald Trump appointed three conservatives. And that is likely to further obscure public perceptions of institutions that prefer to consider themselves above politics, court observers say.

Both decisions “are from the same court whose legitimacy has plummeted,” said Lawrence Tribe, a leading constitutional professor at Harvard Law School.

Both the court’s majority decision on gun rights and the next day’s decision on abortion rely on a philosophy of constitutional interpretation called “originalism.” To assess what rights the Constitution gives, originalists focus on what it means when the text is written.

Opinions by originalists, like both of these judgments, are often filled with a detailed investigation of history.

Most of Judge Clarence Thomas’s views on gun rights are history and the intent of the founders when they created Article 2 of the Constitutional Amendment and when legislators legally created Article 14 in the 1860s. Is mentioned. Thomas broke a long list of historical figures, including King Henry VIII of England, who said the ruling was concerned that the appearance of a pistol threatened his subject’s longbow proficiency.

Judge Samuel Alito’s abortion judgment also delves into the past, concluding that there was no historical record in support of the constitutional right to have an abortion.

“Not only was there no support for such constitutional rights until just before Law, but abortion has long been a crime in all states,” Arito wrote.

Jonathan Entin, an emeritus professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, said the two decisions this week are more legally consistent than critics suggest.

“We can discuss the implications of Article 2 of the Constitutional Amendment, which clearly states the right to retain and retain armed rights, but the right to access to the Constitution is in the Constitution. Not explicitly stated, “he said. “If that’s where you go, maybe these decisions aren’t in such tension after all.”

Not all observers agree.

Barry McDonald, a professor of law at Pepperdine University, said, “I think there is a dual standard here,” and the judge claims that both decisions are based on a rigorous interpretation of law and history. I considered. He said the logic is unstable given the conclusions of many legal historians that the right to exercise the right to exercise in the Bill of Rights is, in fact, much narrower than the majority of courts claim.

However, most ordinary Americans will not be familiar with such complex legal theories. Instead, experts said many would size up court actions based on their perceptions of the judge’s motivations and the personal implications of the decision.

Many would likely see this ruling as a direct result of Trump’s appointment and the judge’s determination to carry out his proceedings, saying that the court has become a “political system rather than a law.” McDonald said.

The tribe said the claim that the majority of the courts accepted the fictitious past and only supported the law was false. The majority of judges can claim that they are legally consistent. But in summary, the gun and abortion decision created the effects of whiplash from courts claiming to protect the rights of individuals, and subsequently effectively restricted many Americans’ control over their bodies. He said.

“I think the decision is in a radically different direction,” said the tribe. In the name of a version of originalism that isn’t really together. “

Guns and abortion: Contradictory decisions, or consistent? Source link Guns and abortion: Contradictory decisions, or consistent?

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