2021 | Week of November 29 | Radio Transcript #1440
The Supreme Court of the United States is poised to once again hear arguments for and against life. It happens this Wednesday, December 1. Lawyers representing pro-abortion advocates and lawyers representing the State of Mississippi will state their reasons for why Mississippi’s ban on abortions after fifteen weeks gestation is either unconstitutional or constitutional. This case, known as Dobbs, is big. Many court observers believe this is the case that could result in the end of Roe v. Wade.
At times like this, it’s important to remember the role of the courts in our system of government. Courts do not make law—or at least according to the Constitution their job is not making law. Courts are to interpret the law. But what does that mean? Interpret the law according to what? Courts are to interpret the law based on the Constitution of the United States or a state constitution depending on the level of the court. Does the law in question comport with the constitution or not? If it does not, then the court should strike it down. If it does, then the court should uphold it.
Courts properly should make their decision based on the constitution and the actual law before them, not based on their personal opinion or agenda nor on popular opinion or a political agenda. When personal, popular, or political opinions or agendas are the determining factors, the courts have generally chosen to ignore the plain language of the constitution and have twisted it in order to try to make it say something it doesn’t. When this happens, the court has stepped out of its proper role and made law.
Conservative court experts maintain this is exactly what happened in 1973 when the Supreme Court decided Roe v. Wade. The result has been nearly 50 years of unborn babies being brutally murdered because seven justices made up a right to privacy and claimed it was in the “penumbras” of the Fourteenth Amendment. This was raw judicial activism with the court acting, in error, as a lawmaking body.
That’s exactly what we hope doesn’t happen in the case the court is hearing this week. As the court hears the arguments this week, we want them to pay attention to the actual text of the constitution and to the original intent of those who wrote it and passed it over 230 years ago. We know because they basically told us so—they didn’t create the US Constitution just for them and their generation. They wrote it to be timeless and universally applicable in this nation—even to their great-great-great and beyond progeny.
Getting to the actual hearing, we know that Mississippi’s Solicitor General will have thirty-five minutes to present its case and opponents will have twenty minutes. The Supreme Court has also allowed the US Solicitor General to argue in support of the pro-abortion defendants. The Solicitor will have fifteen minutes, which equalizes the amount of time both sides have.
We also know that viability is a major issue in this case. That’s the question the court set out for itself. We also know that the doctrine of stare decisis looms large. Basically, this doctrine says the court should stick with what it’s done before—with its own precedents.
One of those precedents would be the Roe decision and several other significant abortion-related cases that have come before the court over the years. To begin in any way to roll back Roe the court has to have a majority of justices—five to be specific—who are willing to ignore the doctrine of stare decisis—which, by the way, is a doctrine of the court’s own making. It’s not in the Constitution. For too long, this concocted and dangerous doctrine has been allowed to perpetuate not just bad decisions, but in this case, life-taking decisions.
The court will live-stream the arguments and will also archive the audio recordings, as well as provide a written transcript of the proceedings—all of which will be available on the court’s website at supremecourt.gov. That’s supremecourt.gov.
This is one of those times that I don’t think the importance of a case before the US Supreme Court is being over hyped. This is an incredible opportunity for the high court to get a supreme issue—the issue of life—right. Regardless of what the court does or doesn’t do, we all need to recognize that neither the court nor its opinions constitute the “supreme law of the land.” The supreme law of this land is the Constitution, which magnificently opens with a ringing declaration of who is really in charge: “We the people.”
This is Julaine Appling for Wisconsin Family Council reminding you the prophet Hosea said, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”