Monday, September 29, 2008

When Judges Make Foreign Policy

The Supreme Court and Foreign Policy? I never thought of the Supreme Court of the United States, as being involved in decisions that directly effect our foreign policy. This NYTimes magazine article is a little lengthy, but it sure does enlighten us as to the tremendous impact the Court has, not only on our domestic lives, but also on the conduct of our foreign policy. Here's an exerpt from the article. Click on the title of this blog to go to the entire NYTimes magazine article. I found it very interesting.

"Every generation gets the Constitution that it deserves. As the central preoccupations of an era make their way into the legal system, the Supreme Court eventually weighs in, and nine lawyers in robes become oracles of our national identity. The 1930s had the Great Depression and the Supreme Court’s “switch in time” from mandating a laissez-faire economy to allowing New Deal regulation. The 1950s had the rise of the civil rights movement and Brown v. Board of Education. The 1970s had the struggle for personal autonomy and Roe v. Wade. Over the last two centuries, the court’s decisions, ranging from the dreadful to the inspiring, have always reflected and shaped who “we the people” think we are.

For a "primer" on the debate about how the Court should rule on constitutional questions, there are two conflicting arguments. Check out the following links to understand the differences:

"The Living Constitution"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Living_Constitution

"Originalism"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Originalism

I must admit that I'm all for the concept of "The Living Constitution"

For more on the "Living Constitutions" click on this document.

http://www.supremecourtus.gov/about/constitutional.pdf
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Native of the Philadelphia "Kensington and Alleganey" northeast area. I spent 4 years in the Air Force (Titan-II missles in Tuscon Arizona). I Am currently retired, and among other adventures I spent 28 years working for AT&T in Telecommunications. I've lived in Florida for 33 years....20 years in Hollywood Fla., and 13 years North Florida. I've been married 42 years, and am a proud father of three adult offspring. All of them contributing to society in a very useful and creative manner.