Reflections on the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court ruled that gay couples can marry in all 50 states. I don’t talk all that much about gay rights. I’m a strong supporter of gay rights, it’s just that I don’t feel like I have much to say about it. It is so unbelievably obvious that all human beings, regardless of orientation, deserve equal rights. It is equally obvious that the only reason not to support gay rights is bigotry. It’s not like racism which has been institutionalized to the point where people don’t see what they do as racist. And it’s not like sexism where positive changes have repercussions that need to be dealt with. Being gay has no effect on anyone other than the person and their partner. Literally the only reason to treat gay people differently is bigotry.

So, why am I writing about it now?  Because there is something in this decision that I just can’t figure out.  It was 5-4.  That means that there is something wrong with four justices on the Supreme Court of the United States.  I just don’t know exactly what is wrong with them.  It is easy to say they are stupid.  But, real stupidity is rare.  The odds against four of any nine people being stupid make it unlikely.  Plus, frankly, even stupidity doesn’t explain these four.

If this were any other political body, I’d say this is easy to figure out.  Congress people and Senators and Governors and Mayors are always in need of money and support.  They either want to be reelected or elected to a higher office.  So, they will naturally support positions that they think will help with their goals or help with their fundraising.  The Supreme Court is not like that, purposely so.  The nine justices have reached the pinnacle of their profession.  There is nowhere higher for them to go.  They are all wealthy, so they don’t need money.  Money and ambition explain a ton of the bad decisions made by relatively smart people in the rest of the government, but they don’t explain this group of justices.

It seems that all that’s left is bigotry.  We have four unabashed bigots sitting on the Supreme Court of the United States.  Reading their dissents doesn’t do anything to change that perception.  I know they aren’t the first set of bigots in the position, but I find it really disturbing.  Society has progressed to the point where being openly bigoted is not tolerated.  Bigots are either marginalized or they are forced to conceal their bigotry.  Roberts was the only one of these four that even attempted to use legal reasoning as cover.  He did a horrible job, but at least he tried.  The others would have read more naturally if they had just used slurs in their dissents.  Thankfully five of the justices got it right.

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