October 11, 2004

This fills me with dread

I can't tell you what a revelation this explanation was to me. I had a real "WTF? moment" -- as I saw it described elsewhere -- when I heard Bush mention the Dred Scott case during the last debate in his non-answer to who he'd appoint to the U.S. Supreme Court if the chance arose. (I know I pleaded for no more debates, but I'm surrounded by people who insist on watching them, so sometimes there's no escape.)

I am committedly pro-choice, but I will admit that I do not follow any current discussions about the abortion debate because the rhetoric, shouting, obloquy, religious diatribes and general passionate discourse about it leave me unmoved in any direction other than frustration. So, clearly, the meaning behind Bush's scripted example of jurisprudence not to be emulated by his would-be nominees flew right over my head.

If you are a staunch supporter of Bush and you subscribe to his position that a woman does not have the right to choose whether or not to carry a pregnancy to term, no matter the circumstances, well, then you probably stopped reading about a paragraph earlier and I'm okay with that.

But if you support Bush because of other issues, like letting a "War President" follow through on his military campaign, or his tax cuts that are intended to create jobs, or being against "Big Government," but you do support a woman's right to choose, or can at least acknowledge that there are instances in which it is acceptable, then I beg you to look at the bigger picture.

I believe that the appointment of U.S. Supreme Court justices is the single biggest power accorded to a U.S. president. The ramifications are far-reaching and long-lasting, more than any fiscal matters, foreign policies, military actions, or government programs I can think of. I don't think it can be overemphasized how important the next appointment to the Court is, and there is almost no doubt that the next president will have the opportunity to make that appointment. Think about how that appointment could affect the decisions the Court makes over the next few generations. Then think about whether tax cuts are really worth it in the grand scheme of things.

(I was pointed to the Paperwight post by gbibb. He goes into more detail about the meaning behind the reference, so I suggest going there, too.)