America’s Supreme Court is known as the most powerful court in the land. At this point in our history it’s more powerful than the Executive and Legislative Branch of the government, which isn’t that hard to do. Considering most of the legislative branch is filled with geriatric hundred millionaires more concerned with ice cream and performative politics than actually passing laws that matter and the Executive branch is filled with geriatrics with dementia and equally terrible ideas and hairpieces, it’s not hard to believe that the geriatrics that run the courts and determine the ethics of our laws are the most powerful.
Hell if you’re over 60 and can form a full sentence without slurring, spouting gibberish or saying something racist, I think that qualifies you to have a seat in the Supreme Court or become President. And sure some people can say I’m being a purist! I want a President that understands the difference between a noun, a verb and racial epithet, and I feel like that should be the bare minimum for leadership.
The Supreme Court was never meant to have as much power as it has now. The founders and framers of the Constitution didn’t want the Courts to be the determiner of federal laws but rather uphold the laws for the people. They are who you call in when the lower courts can’t decide on a ruling between the states or between the state and a citizen, the first courts for international law, which means they should be dealing with the Julian Assange case, and the final appeals courts when you sue someone.
And the first 3 Supreme Courts did exactly that. They were uneventful. The only case of note for the first Supreme Court was about a farmer having to pay his debts. Alexander Hamilton gloated that it was the weakest of the 3 branches of government. Then came Chief Justice John Marshall. In the 1803 case of Marbury v. Madison, Chief Justice Marshall decided that Supreme Court now has the power to deem federal laws constitutional or not. President Thomas Jefferson was livid.
The Courts granted their own power and in 1803, we the people just went “Ok, that’s cool, we’re going to watch this game where 22 dudes pile on top of each to get an oval ball with their hands. We’ll call it football!”. Despite Jefferson’s poetic and justified anger that would give Shakespeare a run for his money, the Courts didn’t overturn their ruling.
This is like a Genie granting it’s own wishes and the first wish they ask for is unlimited wishes! But therein lies the truth about the power of the courts. It’s all wishful thinking. If we the people decided that a ruling of a court was a bad idea and pushed back, there’s nothing 9 geriatrics could do against the 99%, some of whom are young and filled with essential vitamins and minerals.
And Jefferson was right about the courts. They turned the Constitution into a ball of wax and molded it to what they want. Most of the landmark cases that the court has decided on deal with constitutional rights. As in all things, this has led to some pretty great things, but a lot of things people try to sweep under the rug. It’s basically what people do with photographs from the 80s. Especially if you were a fan of glam rock!
Chief Justice Taney’s court decided the Dred Scott Case. At this point the nation’s view on slavery was turning. It turns out, when you say black people don’t count as people, because you can’t see them at night, most Americans are off put by that. There were some states that were free states and others that were slave states because you know, the economy.
I have a simple rule, if you have an economy that can’t run effectively without the use of slavery, then you’re not ready for an economy. Just trade sheep and rocks and anvils or something till you figure out how to NOT own people for the sake of personal profit.
Dred Scott was a slave who was taken to a free state by his master and therefore Scott concluded that he had the right in that state to determine his own life. Hence he chose to stay in the Free state. Makes sense to me and literally everyone that thinks owning human beings is wrong. But the master thought otherwise and after making its rounds in the lower circuit it arrived at the desks of the Supreme Court.
Justice Taney thought he could put an end to the slavery argument using the Judicial might of the courts, stating that all black people are not and will never be seen as people and therefore cannot get the rights of a citizen! If there was a mic, he would’ve dropped it, expecting a standing ovation for his decision. Instead he got a new set of robes. He traded his traditional black judges robes for a more white, ghost-like robe and started going by Supreme Grand Dragon Taney instead.
This is a point of shame for the US Supreme Court. And much like Germany 1936-1945, they don’t like to talk about it. Usually when Justice Taney is brought up lawyers and judges start talking about the weather, what kind of cheese we are eating and how great Lincoln was. And in this instance, he was. Lincoln pushed back against Taney, disregarding his decision and trying to uphold equal rights for all.
Now Taney’s decision did escalate tensions and lead into the Civil War, which technically would make his decision treasonous, and therefore disbarred not just from America but also the throne of the Supreme Court, but lucky for him…he died.
And this is pretty much the only way Justices can be replaced. Under the Judiciary Act of 1789, First President George Washington specified that there needs to be at least 6 Justices and they served untied they died or retired. This of course creates a load of problems. If you have a bad President, theoretically you vote them out in 4 years. Undoing 4 years of damage is far easier than trying to undo 30-40 years worth of damage.
And most Supreme Court Justices serve for a minimum of 30 years. Think about it, if you were a Judicial Genie that got to grant your own or your party’s wishes, would you retire early to bring in someone new with fresh genie wishes? FUCK NO! Some of those Genies might think black people are like real people and women should vote and have control over their own bodies! And those Genies are communists and should’ve never been given the power of wishes!
And of course these lifetime Justices aren’t voted for, they’re appointed by a President. This pretty much makes the Courts the Pimp of the Executive Branch. The Presidency just become a hollow, placeholder for a Judicial Monarchy. The Supreme Court is supposed to be apolitical, ensure that the Constitution is upheld the way that it’s supposed to be upheld. But the courts are THE most political branch of the United States government.
First of all you can’t be apolitical and have a political leader appoint a judge for life! That’s a very political decision to make. I’d wager to say a judge making decisions over their interpretation of the Constitution & the law and determining how people will live their lives for over 30 years is THE most political decision you can make.
Even the interpretation of the Constitution has become political. A majority of Conservative judges think the Constitution and its Amendments are rigid and never changing. And majority of Liberal judges believe it be a living document that changes and evolves with the times. Just mere fact that we have amendments means the document wasn’t meant to be so rigid.
And these Supreme Court judges don’t even see every case that comes through their doors. They’re selective about what cases they choose. And even the selection process comes from cases that have come up through the lower courts. Which means a majority of cases decided up on by the lower circuit courts wind up in limbo. And really after year 5 and super senioritis hits, do you really think they’re picking challenging cases? Nope! Most of them are just trying to coast, playing basketball till death.
When it comes to cases involving the Second Amendment there has only been only 1 case they decided on. And they went ahead and decided on behalf of guns. Hell it took them till 2015 to say gay marriage was all good. It was only after the Courts found out how many Americans were pro-LGBTQ and that Mexico was doing it, that they said “Well if it’s good enough for Mexico…” Can we tell them, Mexico has Medicare For All and a Universal Basic Income so they’d put that into law.
One of the most politicized cases of the last 40 years is Roe V. Wade. Most Conservatives want to overturn this ruling, because according to them it’s a law about killing fetuses. If it’s fetuses today, it’s regular babies tomorrow and then we’ll have legalized murder by Sunday! Nobody tell the the Conservatives about what the American Military does in all those wars it wages across the globe! You know the legalized state sanctioned murders that all wars are. The ones they love and dodged the draft for.
Now to Liberals this is a key issue for women’s rights. In reality it upholds the right to privacy between a women’s health and her doctor. In 1969 a pregnant woman in Texas couldn’t afford to keep her baby. Abortion laws differed state to state and in Texas you could have an abortion only if the mother’s health was in danger.
Since this woman couldn’t afford to take care of a child, this brought the issue of America’s great poverty problem to light; though it wasn’t the star of the show. She found a law firm that was interested in taking down anti-abortion laws. Henry Wade, the man that prosecuted Jack Ruby, went up against the Jane Roe and lost in the Texas Lower Circuit court. Even Texas was like “Hey dude, I think you should sit this out. This isn’t your penis’ battle!”
So he decided the best thing to do here sue all the doctors that want to perform abortions, which sounded very reasonable and like he was a very a graceful loser. Henry Wade sounds like the guy at the bar that calls a woman a bitch because she asked him to put on his pants in a public space! “Fine, I’ll put my pants on! You’re loss lady! My dick has won awards! Awards I gave it every night! Wade out!”
Eventually this went all way up to the Supreme Court, where Wade lost again. The Courts decided that anti-abortion laws are a violation of privacy between a woman and her doctor and the 14th Amendment granting civil & legal rights to all citizens. It also broke pregnancies down into 3 terms. It was a 7-2 decision. Henry Wade never got laid again.
In the time it took for the Courts to hear this case and make a decision, Jane Roe had her child and had to put the baby up for adoption. At this point in time the Supreme Court is primarily conservative and is filling up with judges that want to overturn Roe V. Wade. That would put abortion laws back into the hands of the States.
And we did see this happen at the end of the Summer of 2019, where states like Alabama, Georgia, Missouri and Kentucky passed archaic anti-abortion laws. We were about 3 steps away from bringing back the witch trials too! Despite these state laws being in direct conflict with Federal laws set by Roe V. Wade, the Supreme Court stayed silent on the issue, but we the people were not.
Not only does this bring up the issue of wrongfully shutting down women’s health centers like Planned Parenthood in these states, but also the issue of poverty that Roe V. Wade highlighted. In order to get an abortion or any sort women’s health services, these women are now going to have to take a day off, go to a different state, get their services – which are not cheap – and either drive back the same day or stay at a hotel. The cost of these things can be potential enormous. This is a really easy way to make poverty a crime, something the Republicans love to do, while Democrats placate and ignore it.
In order to overturn the ruling, the Supreme Court would have to take on a case from the lower courts that involve the issue of abortion similar to Roe V. Wade. Right now there are 2. And then they need to give a good reason for their decision. And if they do say that it’s killing babies and valuing the sanctity of life, then they better start making a decision on American War Crimes and call in all the elites that have started wars and unsanctified life over the last 5 decades.
There shan’t be any hypocrisy in the highest court in the land. That’s embarrassing. And before everyone starts panicking and starts hoarding condoms and birth control to peddle in a Post-Roe world, take a breath. Courts only decide on hot button issues when there’s pressure put on them from the public, just like Congress.
An 8-hour work day was deemed constitutional only after the labor movement kept taking the issue to the streets. It was the same with banning Child Labor. The Courts were last branch to get involved in the Civil Rights movement. The Courts didn’t make a bold decisions, they went with what was making noise. So if they start looking into undoing Roe V. Wade, then we make so much noise that they can’t ignore us.
Fortunately on some issues they were on the right side of history. Other times they’re on the side of Grand Dragon Justice Taney. The reality is that there are more stains the Robes of the Supreme Court than…clean spots…You get what I’m sayin’ here. The Courts have a lot of dirty laundry and no more quarters to operate the washer and dryer of Justice! And that kind works out for them since Lady Justice is blind. She can’t see the mustard and Civil Rights stain on the robes!
The argument for these lifetime appointments is that these folks are vetted by Congress for up to 60 days, picked by the President, who we all know has always been an honorable man and most importantly are Paragons of Virtue!
Ah yes, the virtuous like Roger Taney & Morrison Waite that said Black People aren’t people, but corporations are! In fact Waite decided that women don’t get the right to vote and white murderers who kill black people go free. Waite is also the person that determined Corporate Personhood and were protected by the Constitution, and if you murder one of them that’s treason.
And we can the virtuous legacy of Morrison Waite as more and more in killer cops get to go free after they brutalize and kill black people in America. And even when they do get the sentence they deserve they have a justice system that wants to lessen their time served for being police officers. The highest court in the land gave cops a LITERAL free pass to kill minorities in America and there’s no calls to overturn these laws.
In fact in the modern day, the Supreme Court decided that they will not overturn any Qualified Immunity cases. Qualified Immunity is offered to police officer so they can’t be sued for killing, maiming or injuring citizens while on duty. Once again another free pass to kill and brutalize black people in America. That’s 2 get out of jail free cards to a court that upheld more racist decisions than ones that FOR Civil Rights!
The virtuous like the William H. Taft, who forgot he was President when serving as Chief Justice! The virtuous members of the Taft court decided that minimum wage was unconstitutional, which led to private bargaining, which again gave corporations the leg up. And this is why minimum wage has been stagnant for a decade!
Oh and yes and who could forget the virtuous Oliver Wendall Holmes who said the Espionage & Sedition Acts don’t violate free speech for imprisoning anti-war Socialists making speeches! Yes, why not set the precedent that if you’re against the Working Class dying for the cause of the rich, that’s just as bad as waging a war itself! Saying speech is warfare is just as virtuous as saying Corporations are people…if virtuous suddenly meant insane. And in that case statements like that are dripping with Virtue.
And let’s not forget the paragon of Virtue that said the Japanese exclusions were fair and fine in a state of emergency. A loophole to federally mandated racism, but there’s so much virtue from that FDR appointed Supreme Court judge that it’s oozing out like a candy bar filled with caramel nougat. Decisions like is what lead to & justify persecution of Muslims in America after events caused extremists.
With all of these virtues, the government, backed by the Courts, can deem a state of emergency for things like Black Lives Matter and make a claim that all Black People and those in support of the cause can’t be near a police station, areas where cops patrol or are seen to be in patrol. And yes this includes Mall Cops. And instead of arguing that’s a violation of First Amendment Rights, they’d argue that cops are in peril and the nation is in a state of emergency and Blue Lives Matter is constitutional.
The only way Blue Lives Matter is even relevant is when you’re talking about the Smurfs. Then yes, Blue Lives Matter.
If America was a true Democracy, we would be voting in at minimum 6 new judges every 8-10 years. But we are a corporate oligarchy and hence we have a court system that runs like a Judicial Monarchy. [SCV 6] [SC 14] And of course they’ve solidified corporatism into law with the ruling on Citizens United as well.
Campaign finance was just boring enough to people that the forces of evil made it their target for taking over the only thing that matters to the good liberals…voting and the election. Money in politics has been a longstanding issue. In fact the Corporate Personhood decision was made only because the Supreme Court was paid off by the Railroad companies.
Teddy Roosevelt set up the first anti-corruption bill in the Tillman Act in 1907. This is introduced the idea of Political Action Committees, which really sound like they’re going to take to the streets and fight for your right to vote for that one candidate. It’s basically a corporate crowdfund for a political candidate. That’s what it’s come down to folks…GoFundMe for Politics! The Federal Election Campaign Act established the Federal Action Committee and limited what Political Action Committees could do. Obviously this pissed off those corporations that really wanted to control elections!
The final nail on head came from the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act or BCRA which prevented political ads from being played 60 days before an election. If you’re wondering why they concentrate about 46 political ads per commercial break of every Jeopardy episode, that’s why. They gotta push that propaganda and make up lost exploitation.
Here’s every political ad ever: “America is in trouble. There’s crime everywhere, all the time! There’s crime being committed in front of your face 125% of the time and you can’t see it because immigrants have stolen your jobs and your eyes. It’s time to buy back the American vision and save America by making visions in America with this Candidate! Despite the fact they’ve never done anything to help you or the American Working Class ever, they’ll do it for you specifically! Paid for by the Campaign For America’s Visions Made By The American Flag!”
Now PACs got around this rule by focusing on ads on specific issues instead of a candidate. So basically repeat the ad I recited just a second ago but say healthcare instead of the Candidate’s name. Since it’s an advertisement, lies are not just allowed but actually required. That was a Supreme Court decision we don’t talk about. Propaganda v. Truth, where Propaganda won. Better graphics, more celebrities and a lot of bribes.
Mitch McConnell and the NRA actually tried to sue Congress over the BCRA and lost. This led to NRA News Network on Sirius Radio, which is considered a legitimate news network. The NRA News Network makes Fox News sound like Sesame Street…a racist Sesame Street, but you get the idea. In America a Pro-Gun Corporation is called a news network and publishers like Julian Assange are called hackers and terrorists.
A Conservative group went after Michael Moore’s film Farenheight 911, claiming it was a political ad and coming out too close to the elections. But this group lost the battle since it was movie and not a political ad claiming we’re all going die all time unless we vote for one of the corrupt corporate parties. The FEC denied this group and began their game of cat & mouse!
This conservative group decided to create their own movie company called Citizens United and created a documentary called “Hillary: The Movie”, proving once and for all that Conservatives are not creative. You could’ve gone with “The Woman Behind The Man”, “The BJ That Brought Down America” or even “The Clinton Files! How Interns Seduced A President!” They were planning on releasing it via Video On Demand on Comcast. Yeah, this movie didn’t even go straight to DVD, it went straight to On Demand. It’s like one step above a made for TV movie starring Kirk Cameron! In fact they paid Comcast $1 million to put on their platform!
So the FEC fought back and the case went all the way up to the Supreme Court who ruled in favor of Citizens United. The majority ruling and opinion written by Justice Kennedy said that free speech shouldn’t be limited even if the speaker is a corporation and removed any limits on corporate funding.
At first it was very specifically for Citizens United, the ideological group, but the Courts decided to go after the BCRA to undo it. This final piece of the decision made money and speech one and the same. So the more money you have the you can influence elections and legislation through anything deemed as Free Speech and Press. Essentially it’s the “Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is” Decision.
This led to creation of SuperPACs, which are organizations that pretty much have an unlimited cash flow for electioneering. Once again this was put into place to protect corporations. SuperPACs allowed companies like Target to back up candidates in secret so they could still turn a profit without putting a target on their back. Now these aren’t supposed to have direct party affiliation but when has that stopped Party elites!
The Founders and Framers of the nation were ensuring that the new post Royal Government would lack corruption. In the span of 200 years the Supreme Court has made this government one of the most corrupt in the world. The Citizens United ruling is an insult to every single person that wrote and signed the Constitution.
As much as the Supreme Court has decided landmark pieces of legislation like Brown V. Board of Education, Roe V. Wade, an 8-hour work day, it’s done more harm than good. And the good it’s done is primarily when there’s public pressure to take the case. For the most part, the Supreme Court has upheld rights for corporations and ensured the people are left behind.
9 Justices who sit on the court at this point are far more powerful than the President, the entirety of Congress and possibly even Oprah. And yes, there is fear that the next 40 years of decisions made by the Courts are going to push progress back. And that very well maybe true, but we are forgetting the only ones that gave the Courts this much power is the courts themselves and the People’s acceptance of this power. So why would we accept a branch of government that has failed the people monumentally countless times?
The Constitution itself says that if a government stops representing the people, the people have the right to overthrow it. It also says that Congress can make laws so the Courts can’t review it, which would make us a Congressional Monarchy instead of Judiciary one. But if the Courts & Congress begin to make decisions we don’t agree with, then we the people with our collective effort, push back and show them who really has the power.
The Supreme Court Of The United States or SCOTUS controls and dictates some of most major laws in the country, for now. And sure SCOTUS sounds phallic but I think it’s meant to. It’s about 2 letters away from being the ball bag of American politics. And with the way it’s set up, SCOTUS cradles the 2 other branches of government in its judicial sack and protects them from the abrasive climate of activists and the proletariat that are truly fighting for justice and equality granted to all citizens through the Constitution.
Krish Mohan is a socially conscious, Indian standup comedian and writer who regularly tours the country. He performs at small theaters, bars, comedy clubs, colleges, DIY and house venues. With his quirky attitude, charming personality, and intelligent humor, Krish captivates and engages audiences of all backgrounds, tackling hot button topics like race, religion, war, immigration, while adding an optimistic, philosophical & sociological twist!