Supreme Court OVERTURNS Roe v. Wade
by FOB92, Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 02:05:34 PM EDT
The diary title freaked you out a little, didn't it? Read on to understand how that could become a reality . . .
I was in the McDonald's drive-thru this morning (grabbing some unhealthy breakfast) when an important but disturbing Nina Totenberg segment aired on NPR's Morning Edition. The story quickly reminded me of why we need a DEMOCRAT in the White House, and why we can't afford to have John McCain reside at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
The Supreme Court heard a major death penalty case today that tested whether capital punishment is constitutional for the rape of a child. I oppose the Death Penalty across the board, but it isn't a hot-button issue for me (that would be censorship). I know that both Democratic Presidential Candidates support some form of the Death Penalty, and I accept that they can't oppose this issue for political reasons.
I listened to Totenberg's segment, and was deeply sympathetic for the children that were victimized by this heinous crime. I have three young children, and would most likely have the same feelings as the father of a victim:
The test case before the court began on March 2, 1998, when Patrick Kennedy called 911 to report the rape of his 8-year-old stepdaughter.
"I need an ambulance," Kennedy said. "I need police. My little girl ... is 8 years old. She was off in the yard and she said two boys grabbed her and raped my child and I'm trying to find these motherf**** because I am going to kill them."
What happened next to Mr. Kennedy shocked the hell out of me:
Despite the fact that Kennedy's stepdaughter supported the story of a rape by two boys, police soon became convinced that Kennedy was the perpetrator. Months later, after the girl had been removed from her mother's home, state social workers suggested to the mother that the child's return would depend on her facing up to the stepfather's role. The child then changed her story and implicated her stepfather. He was tried and sentenced to death. The Louisiana Supreme Court upheld the conviction, noting that the current U.S. Supreme Court, with its two new Bush appointees, has not ruled on the standards for evaluating death penalty laws.
Translation: The 1977 decision applied only to the rape of an adult woman, and maybe with the court now leaning much more conservative, it would allow execution for the rape of a child.
I can understand why some Americans support executing child rapists, but I fear that these advocates and a Conservative Supreme Court will neglect to consider this disturbing fact:
. . . from 1930 to 1972, basically the last years when the death penalty was imposed for rape, nine out of 10 men executed for rape were black. Moreover, it appears that no white man has ever been executed in the U.S. for the non-homicide rape of a black woman or child.
That wasn't 55% or even 70% . . . THAT WAS 90% of executions! Louisiana also runs the risk of executing the innocent due to this procedure:
. . . all those charged with child rape are offered the chance to plead guilty and be sentenced to life in prison without parole. So the only defendants who are subject to the death penalty are those who insist they are innocent and demand a trial where . . . there are special risks of erroneous conviction.
The case above is just one of many important decisions that the Court will have to revisit this year. I expect Roe v. Wade to return before the Court in the near future.
A President serves no more than eight years, but their Supreme Court legacy can last generations. Justice Ginsburg could very well retire in the next four years. I do not want a Strict Constructionist replacing a progressive champion like Ginsburg. Please join me on MyDD in defining John McCain as an enemy to progressive ideals on the Supreme Court.
Strict Constructionist Philosophy
John McCain believes that shaping the judiciary through the appointment power is one of the most important and solemn responsibilities a President has, and certainly one that has a profound and lasting impact. When he was running for President in 1999, he promised that, in appointing judges, he would not only insist on persons who were faithful to the Constitution, but persons who had a record that demonstrated that fidelity. A President should have confidence in the judicial philosophy of those he is appointing to the bench. That is why he strongly supported John Roberts and Samuel Alito for the Supreme Court and that is why he would seek men and women like them as his judicial appointees.
Support Hillary or Obama now . . . but SAY NO to McCain on November 4 ! ! !