"FEMINISTS" AGAINST WOMEN. Admittedly, when it comes to illogic on the part of supporters of criminalized abortion, the rape and incest exemptions are relatively small potatoes. What really gives away the show is their unwillingness to apply criminal sanctions against women who are allegedly committing something akin to murder. Hack politicians, of course, respond to questions about how the Republican Party platform can support a constitutional amendment that would make abortion first-degree murder in all 50 states but would entirely exempt women from punishment by babbling nonsense.
THE FORCED PREGNANCY JUSTIFICATION THAT DARES NOT SPEAK ITS NAME: Jill Filipovicfinds noted crank Bill Napoli arguing that "[i]f you vote to repeal [South Dakota's unconstitutional abortion ban], you'll be voting for the death of 800 babies that didn't have anything to do with rape or incest" and "[i]f you love babies, and see those cute little babies in the park, grocery store, mall, or cafe, think very carefully about your vote to repeal." Napoli (of "sodomized virgins" fame) is tryi
SYMPATHY FOR THE SCALIA. The New York Times is running a superb multi-part series about the increasing number of legal privileges and breaks being given to religious institutions, which has generated some attention and commentary.
Dred Scott v. Sandford is the ultimate trump card in constitutional arguments. This infamous case -- in which the Supreme Court held that Congress could not regulate slavery in the territories and that African Americans had “no rights the white man is bound to respect” -- provides such rhetorically compelling ammunition because everyone today considers the outcome to have been grossly immoral. (And make no mistake, the legitimacy of Supreme Court decisions over time rests on their substantive outcomes.)
Not long ago, the New York Court of Appeals intervened in a dispute over a hotly contested social issue: It struck down legislation that had been passed by the democratically accountable legislators of the New York State Assembly, legislation that was also a crucial part of the governor's first election campaign. Despite this, the court usurped the prerogatives of the more democratic branches and arrogantly ruled the legislation unconstitutional.