Others have talked about the recent 5 to 4 ruling by SCOTUS which decided the death penalty would no longer apply to anyone who was under the age of 18 at the time they committed a crime that made the death penalty an option in their ultimate sentencing.
Justice Kennedy noted that “the stark reality is that the United States is the only country in the world” that sanctioned executions for juvenile crimes.
That drew an angry response from Justice Antonin Scalia, who read parts of his dissent from the bench. “The basic premise ? that American law should conform to the laws of the rest of the world ? ought to be rejected out of hand,” he said in his written opinion.
And that, in a nutshell, is where my biggest concern lies. When the highest court in the land elects to base its rulings not on a legitimate interpretation of the Constitution, but on the individual whims of any given Justice or the conventional wisdom of international opinion, we have ceased to be a nation governed by the rule of law, but have begun the decent toward the rule of the mob.
The other pending news, regarding SCOTUS, is their hearing of two cases which will address that pesky (and IMHO incorrectly interpreted) part of the Constitution, the “separation of church and state”. This is tied into the open displays of, specifically, the ten commandments. And as with most battles of this sort, you have the atheists along with those who misinterpret the constitution’s guidance on this issue on one side, and various religious groups, conservatives, constitutionalists, and as noted here the majority of Americans (as high as 76%), on the other.
Like it or not, the fact is the ten commandments have played a part in western civilization’s development of its laws, and what was of importance or “value” to the guidelines of a functioning and healthy society. This country was formed by men who if not individually particularly religious, knew faiths (of all flavors) were an important underpinning to the societies of their day. What they were very concerned about, and rightly so, was the federal government NOT select any given sect over another, as being favored by the state.
So, in theory, if we recognize the Judeo-Christian roots which helped to form this nation, and as in the case of the ten commandments, allowed for the public display of this recognition, it is NOT a violation of the constitution. However, if tomorrow the President came out and said the Roman Catholic Church was now “The” one and only recognized faith of this country, and would be granted favor, power, and a formal presence over all others, THAT, would be a direct violation of the constitution.
It is really just that simple. If the Supreme Court rules in any other fashion, then perhaps another case needs to be brought in front of the court. The idea that atheists are in fact a -theism of their own. I contend the folks who follow that particular line of thought…although not believing in (a) god…have in fact substituted man in gods stead. And as such, they are just as culpable as any other religion or faith, and should be as restricted in how they effect the “rule of law” in this country as any other religion has been.