22 September 2005

My Favorite College Writer Hits The Nail On The Head - Again

Reprinted From The Sophian Liberal Oppostition to Roberts Nomination Shows Desire to Polarize Written by: Kirsten Steinke of Smith College
If any one thing can be said about the John Roberts confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court, it is that they were markedly boring. Roberts remained calm and collected, completely unfettered. Without any real reason to oppose Roberts, Democrats half-heartedly (as if aware of the futility of it all) asked irrelevant questions to which they knew he would not respond. With a firm platform of judicial integrity above personal political affiliation, Roberts was essentially inscrutable. After all the buildup by liberal opposition organizations, the public may have expected a little bit more. Perhaps the most ridiculous effort by these opposition groups was the ad run by NARAL (National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League), which attempted to paint Roberts as a violent misogynist. In 1989, Roberts was involved with a lawsuit in which abortion clinics sought federal intervention in the event that protestors trespassed on their property. While Roberts agreed that trespassing was directly contrary to state law, he questioned whether it was directly prohibited by federal law, thus justifying federal intervention. Therefore, according to NARAL's ad, Roberts supports abortion clinic bombings. Though NARAL has since pulled the ad, they continue to urge supporters to oppose his confirmation, stating on their website, "If Roberts is confirmed to a lifetime appointment, there is little doubt that he will vote to dismantle Roe v. Wade." Despite all evidence to the contrary and Roberts' repeated statements that he will uphold past precedent, NARAL continues to politicize Roberts' nomination. And while NARAL represents the most extreme example of this opposition, it is not alone. Other groups, such as MoveOn.org, People for the American Way, the Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, The Feminist Majority Foundation, and the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, to name a few, have all jumped on the polarizing bandwagon. During the election, one of the main points made by Democrats was that the country was divided as it had never been before, and that this division was the fault of Bush's presidency. Why, then, is it that the majority of polarization comes from the left? Certainly, some of this division can be attributed to the Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson crowd, but the fact remains that these extreme right wingers rarely represent the general sentiments of mainstream conservatives. It is all well and good for liberals to contend that they are opposed to the political rift in America today, but their actions invariably speak louder than their words. Despite liberal groups' depictions of Roberts as a threatening, right-wing candidate for nomination, his uneventful confirmation hearings proved that he will be a reliable judge to uphold the law as it stands. If the liberal groups which represent mainstream democratic views truly wish to erase the political divide in the country, then they will take the events of the confirmation hearings as evidence of the futility of their polemic tirades. Until this happens, the divide will remain.
Blogger's 1st Amendment Pledge If the FEC makes rules that limit my First Amendment right to express my opinion on core political issues, I will not obey those rules. Gribbit is a contributing writer at Stop The ACLU and the co-founder and administrator of Stop The ACLU BlogBurst.

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