The Human Rights Campaign, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, National Center for Lesbian Rights, and Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays put out a united statement today to announce opposition to the nomination of John G. Roberts to the Supreme Court.
"Judge Roberts has such a narrow view of what the courts can and should do, it's a wonder he wants the job at all," said Joe Solmonese, president of the Human Rights Campaign. "Ultimately, this is about an individual’s right to privacy. From women's rights to religious freedom to civil rights, there is powerful evidence that Judge Roberts would rule against equality."
"For his entire adult life, John Roberts has been a disciple of and promoted a political and legal ideology that is antithetical to an America that embraces all, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people," said Matt Foreman, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. "He has denigrated the nature and scope of the constitutional rights to privacy, equal protection and due process as well as federal government's role in confronting injustice. I have no doubt he's an accomplished lawyer and an affable dinner companion, but that doesn't make him any less a mortal danger to equal rights for gay people, reproductive freedom and affirmative action."
I'm conflicted about this. While our GLBT groups have offered solid reasons to oppose him, the questions are: Do they think we can do better if his nomination is defeated? Can one expect but a pig when the pool of potential nominees is chosen from a pig pen?
From talking to a lot of gay people, there seems to be a consensus that Roberts is about the best we can expect from Bush. If so, isn't opposing him futile? My hats off to our groups for doing the research and hard work to educate Americans on Robert's record. However, I think opposing him is an uphill battle. Hopefully, he will not turn out to be a Bork, Scalia or Thomas. It is difficult work to be an activist when presented with no good options.
William Raspberry had an excellent article in th eWashington Post that states that Roberts is a very privileged man who was born to that privilege, like Bush himself. The gist of what Mr. Raspberry said was that Robert's life and work more likely reflects a man insulated and likely insensitive to the needs of people with less protection and access than he has had all his life.
That bears pondering. Bush's appointees so far all have records of protecting the big corporations and the interests of the richest in this country at the expense of those whose hands do the real work.
posted by Regan, at
8/26/2005 9:00 AM
Wayne, I can't believe you are recommending what you are saying -- "don't oppose Roberts because he's probably the 'best' of the lot"!?!?!?. There should be some minimum standard for acceptance, and people should say NO whenever it's appropriate. By not showing where the line should be, the line keeps moving to a very bad place.
I fault the groups, however, by not waiting until after his hearing and seeing how he answers questions or at least wording the press release as initial concerns about Roberts based on his past record of the cases he has worked on. And then they could come out strongly no if they still felt the same after the hearings. I think Lambda is doing a better job in making the process more informative and meaningful by listing the specific questions that should be answered.
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