Monday, September 12, 2005

It Ain’t the Court’s Fault, Mr. Coburn

I just finished listening to the opening statements in the Roberts confirmation hearing. Most of it was the kind empty pleasantry you’d expect to hear, but I was particularly irritated/confused/amused by the comments of Senator Coburn (R-OK) a.k.a “Dr. Tom.”

Coburn argued that judicial activism is pulling the country apart, insinuating that with a less “activist” court, partisan squabbles would melt away and Republicans and Democrats would march hand-in-hand into the future. I kicked myself for not having a video feed on my computer when Coburn choked back tears while proclaiming, “We are all Americans.”

While I agree with Coburn’s impassioned statement about our common nationality, I sure as hell don’t agree with his assessment that the Court overstepped its boundaries when it ruled that counties could not adorn their courtroom walls with copies of the Ten Commandments or that the question of the right to an abortion should be left to the states. And despite what Mr. Coburn would lead you to believe, these contentions have nothing to do with the court, and everything to do with my principles.

Is he really pinning American dissention on the court? If so, it’s the most misguided case of scapegoatism I’ve come across in a long time. But then again, it’s the kind of thing I expect from conservative court bashers. After all, it's so much easier to blame the court than to admit that not all Americans share a Christian worldview.

The real confirmation fireworks start tomorrow. I’ll be posting my thoughts throughout the day.

--Matthew McCoy