Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Aftershock

I thought I'd take some time to let the shock wear off before attempting to take a crack at the Roberts thing.

I remember when I was 18 years old, a freshman at Emory University. I was bright-eyed, ready to dive into the world of academia. Then something happened that changed everyone, and we haven't been the same since.

That's the answer to the question I know I'll be asked when I'm 50: Where were you when they attacked the World Trade Center? Why, I was in freshman English, completely oblivious to it until I got back to my dorm room in time to watch the second tower fall live.

Anyway, that's not the point of this. I took an intro Women's Studies course with a brilliant woman, Valerie Ruffin. One of our readings was titled "What Has Happened Here?" How fitting for that to be stuck in my mind even today.

Naturally, the big issue everyone is squawking about is abortion. This is the most pointless thing to argue, because no one's mind will ever be changed. Here's how I first found out about abortion, when I was in fourth grade and Clinton was running against the first Bush (paraphrased, it was 12 years ago):

Me: People at school are saying Clinton wants to kill babies.
My mom: No, he's just in favor of a woman's right to terminate a pregnancy.
Me: Oh. Well, yeah, that makes sense.

Since then, I have been called all sorts of names, my favorite being a "baby killer," as if it is solely my responsibility that abortion exists. Hell, the medical term for a miscarriage: spontaneous abortion. It's not a new word, and it's not a new concept.

I know in the past this country has tried to impose morality and has failed miserably (ahem, prohibition). I suppose no one really can know when life begins. Does anyone remember being in the womb? Of course not.

I can only hope that the leaders of the country understand the importance of maintaining all of our liberties - even the ones they're not so fond of. If we claim to be the pioneers of freedom, it should start on our home front.

We should not let fear rule our lives. I am deeply shamed that we managed to pass the PATRIOT ACT, and not just because it's a terrible acronym. We let fear take over, and we all too willingly chipped away at just a few more of our liberties.

The Supreme Court's job is to interpret the Constitution. Let them do that, and only that. Legislating from the bench needs to be stomped down for good.

George W. Bush indeed has had to make many tough decisions as President, decisions I myself could not make. That's why I'm not the President. However, when a decision of this caliber is brought before him, it should not be taken lightly. I have to believe that he would not merely select a candidate just to overturn a ruling he and his right-wing cronies don't agree with.

I would like to believe that Roberts is all the great things Bush said he is. However, only time will tell whether or not the freedoms and liberties we fight for abroad are ones people consider worthy of fighting for at home.

1 comment:

Manda said...

This is another one of your more beautiful posts. Just so you know...