Guest Column: Apathy, Us & Sotomayor

In the coming weeks as judge Sotomayor goes through the fire of confirmation as an US Supreme Court justice we should tune our ears to the rhetoric of both the left and the right. When we hear the screams of fear and foul play or the sweet voices of empathy and compassion, we must use our capacity for reasoning and detection to understand why those voices are being raised. We will hear more on the evils of policy making from the bench and personal agendas and biases. We will hear more of life experiences and overcoming hardship. But, does any of that matter? It’s hard to tell right now, yet here is how I see it.

It is the responsibility of our Supreme Court to uphold the rule of law regardless of personal belief. They are chosen to be the keepers of our Constitution and to check the power of the Legislative and the Executive. If they have an agenda to protect any minority it is the minority of the individual. They are seated to keep our government in line with its Constitutional authority. Their decisions should come from our Constitution and, our Constitution alone. The Supreme Court is the chain Jefferson spoke of, “In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.” Thomas Jefferson. That’s how I see it. Plain and simple.

If I had to choose a word to describe the predicament we find ourselves in today it would be “Apathy”. It is apathy that has brought us to the brink of whatever collectivist term you choose to use. Our citizenry has decided not take part in our republic or study issues unless they see or feel direct pressure from a particular issue, and as soon as something more exciting comes along they loose interest.

I know it’s hard to keep up with all that is going on, but we must. It is apathy that has brought us a majority of weak minded politicians or politicians who serve for self interest. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against people of these characters as long as their actions don’t effect my life, liberty or property. But here in lies the rub, we have a nation of weak minded, self serving officials who seem to go out of their “Collective” way to make my life more difficult than it should be ordinarily.

Above all, we need to change our national way of thinking. We need to search out and find those individuals who would protect our liberties and our Constitutions, both state and federal, and short of dragging them kicking and screaming, encourage them to seek office. Those nay do wells who are in office now, we can drag out however we see fit. Kicking and screaming is just an option. If we hope to restore this grand Republic, we must enlighten; remind, educate, convert or whatever it takes (maybe just short of waterboarding) to convince our friends and family, our coworkers and our party that we are right.

With the elections coming up in 2010 and 2012 we have a chance to start turning this nation and our state, even our counties around. We should make our agenda clear to all that hear us. “We will not suffer under a government that does not abide it’s very own rule of law. We will place our individual support to those who serve begrudgingly yet honestly and know that the answers are to be found in our Constitution.”

Those people are there. We have met them on the campaign trail and in our meetups. We all know of one who has inspired many to take up the mantle of Statesman. We have all found someone in this movement whom we feel can serve with distinction. And they know if elected, we are here to remind them of their duty.

If we don’t want judges to set policy we need to remove the hands that hold the seats at the bench.

Jeff Austin
esse quam videri

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