Archive for July 9th, 2009

Ginsburg: I Thought Roe Was to Rid Undesirables

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

Did she actually say that? Wow, that’s really off base and totally uncalled for. Not something a supreme court justice should be admitting to.

In an astonishing admission, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says she was under the impression that legalizing abortion with the 1973 Roe. v. Wade case would eliminate undesirable members of the populace, or as she put it “populations that we don’t want to have too many of.”

Her remarks, set to be published in the New York Times Magazine this Sunday but viewable online now, came in an in-depth interview with Emily Bazelon titled, “The Place of Women on the Court.”

The 16-year veteran of the high court was asked if she were a lawyer again, what would she “want to accomplish as a future feminist legal agenda.”

Ginsburg responded:

Reproductive choice has to be straightened out. There will never be a woman of means without choice anymore. That just seems to me so obvious. The states that had changed their abortion laws before Roe [to make abortion legal] are not going to change back. So we have a policy that affects only poor women, and it can never be otherwise, and I don’t know why this hasn’t been said more often.

Question: Are you talking about the distances women have to travel because in parts of the country, abortion is essentially unavailable, because there are so few doctors and clinics that do the procedure? And also, the lack of Medicaid for abortions for poor women?

Ginsburg: Yes, the ruling about that surprised me. [Harris v. McRae – in 1980 the court upheld the Hyde Amendment, which forbids the use of Medicaid for abortions.] Frankly I had thought that at the time Roe was decided, there was concern about population growth and particularly growth in populations that we don’t want to have too many of. So that Roe was going to be then set up for Medicaid funding for abortion. Which some people felt would risk coercing women into having abortions when they didn’t really want them. But when the court decided McRae, the case came out the other way. And then I realized that my perception of it had been altogether wrong.

When pressed to explain what she meant by reproductive rights needing to be straightened out, Ginsburg said, “The basic thing is that the government has no business making that choice for a woman.”

Asked if that meant getting rid of the test the court imposed, in which it allows states to impose restrictions on abortion such as a waiting period, the justice said she was “not a big fan of these tests.”

I think the court uses them as a label that accommodates the result it wants to reach. It will be, it should be, that this is a woman’s decision. It’s entirely appropriate to say it has to be an informed decision, but that doesn’t mean you can keep a woman overnight who has traveled a great distance to get to the clinic, so that she has to go to some motel and think it over for 24 hours or 48 hours.

I still think, although I was much too optimistic in the early days, that the possibility of stopping a pregnancy very early is significant. The morning-after pill will become more accessible and easier to take. So I think the side that wants to take the choice away from women and give it to the state, they’re fighting a losing battle. Time is on the side of change.

Three years ago, Ginsburg received some embarrassing national attention when she napped on the bench during a court hearing.

“Justices David Souter and Samuel Alito, who flank the 72-year-old, looked at her but did not give her a nudge,” reported Gina Holland of the Associated Press.

The incident caught the attention of Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank, who said:

“At first, she appeared to be reading something in her lap. But after a while, it became clear: Ginsburg was napping on the bench. By Bloomberg News’s reckoning – not denied by a court spokeswoman – Ginsburg’s snooze lasted a quarter of an hour.

“It’s lucky for Ginsburg that the Supreme Court has so far refused to allow television in the courtroom, for her visit to the land of nod would have found its way onto late-night shows.”

Original Link.

Media Ignores Surveys Unfavorable to Obama

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

Another survey that shows that even though they are starting to get exasperated with Obama, the Department of Propaganda (aka the Mainstream Media), they are still only portraying Obama in a positive light. They are still refusing to take him to task over his policies and his failures.

In a recent Gallup Poll, Americans — by a two-to-one margin — say their political views have become more conservative rather than more liberal — 39 percent to 18 percent. Another Gallup survey indicated that 40 percent of Americans call themselves conservative, the highest level since 2004.

And in a recent Rasmussen survey, the president’s disapproval rating on the economy has reached a new high as 56 percent of Americans rate Obama “fair” or “poor” on the economy, compared to the 50 percent who disapproved of his economic policies just a week ago.

Tim Graham, director of media analysis at the Media Research Center, claims the mainstream media does not want to report these polls. “I think considering that people would presume that with a Democratic president and a Democratic Congress in Washington that we would be becoming more liberal, and we seem to be going in the opposite direction,” he notes. “That’s not a story I think the media want to tell.”

Original Link.

Episcopal Bishop Calls Individual Salvation ‘Heresy,’ ‘Idolatry’

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

I’m not sure what Bible this Episcopal Bishop is reading, but mine says:

“…If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, you shall be saved; for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.”
Romans 10:9,10

Read the complete “Roman Road to Salvation” here.

ANAHEIM, CA – Episcopal Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori says it’s “heresy” to believe that an individual can be saved through a sinner’s prayer of repentance.

In her opening address to the church’s General Conference in California, Jefferts Schori called that “the great Western heresy: that we can be saved as individuals, that any of us alone can be in right relationship with God.”

The presiding bishop said that view is “caricatured in some quarters by insisting that salvation depends on reciting a specific verbal formula about Jesus.”

According to Schori, it is heresy to believe that an individual’s prayer can achieve a saving relationship with God. “That individualist focus is a form of idolatry, for it puts me and my words in the place that only God can occupy.”

Original Link.

“Senate Slavery Apology” by Walter E. Williams

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

Last month, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed Senate Resolution 26 “Apologizing for the enslavement and racial segregation of African-Americans.” The resolution ends with: “Disclaimer. — Nothing in this resolution (a) authorizes or supports any claim against the United States; or (b) serves as a settlement of any claim against the United States.” That means Congress apologizes but is not going to pay reparations, as least for now.

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus have expressed concerns about the disclaimer, thinking that it’s an attempt to stave off reparations claims from the descendants of slaves. Congressional Black Caucus Chairwoman Barbara Lee, D-Calif., said her organization is studying the language of the resolution and Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss, said “putting in a disclaimer takes away from the meaning of an apology. A number of us are prepared to vote against it in its present form. There are several members of the Progressive Caucus who feel the same way.”

It goes without saying that slavery was a gross violation of human rights. Justice would demand that all the perpetrators — that includes slave owners, and African and Arab slave sellers — make compensatory reparation payments to victims. Since slaves, slave owners and slave sellers are no longer with us, such compensation is beyond our reach and a matter to be settled in the world beyond.

Absent from the reparations debate is: Who pays? Don’t say the government because the government doesn’t have any money that it doesn’t first take from some American. So which Americans owe black people what? Reparations advocates don’t want that question asked but let’s you and I.

Are the millions of Europeans, Asians, and Latin Americans who immigrated to the U.S. in the 20th century responsible for slavery and should they be forced to cough up reparations money? What about descendants of Northern whites who fought and died in the name of freeing slaves? Should they cough up reparations money for black Americans? What about non-slave-owning Southern whites, a majority of whites; should they be made to pay reparations? And, by the way, would President Obama, whose father is Kenyan and mother white, be eligible for a reparations payment?

On black people’s side of the ledger, thorny issues also arise. Some blacks purchased other blacks as a means to free family members. But other blacks owned slaves for the same reason whites owned slaves — to work farms or plantations. Are descendants of these blacks eligible and deserving of reparations? There is no way that Europeans could have captured millions of Africans. They had African and Arab help. Should Congress haul representatives of Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Muslim states before them and demand they compensate American blacks because of their ancestors’ involvement in capturing and selling slaves?

Reparations advocates make the foolish unchallenged pronouncement that United States became rich on the backs of free black labor. That’s utter nonsense. Slavery has never had a very good record of producing wealth. Think about it. Slavery was all over the South. Buying into the reparations nonsense, you’d have to conclude that the antebellum South was rich and the slave-starved North was poor. The truth of the matter is just the opposite. In fact, the poorest states and regions of our country were places where slavery flourished: Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia while the richest states and regions were those where slavery was absent: Pennsylvania, New York and Massachusetts.

The Senate apology is nothing more than political theater but it could be a slick way to get the camel’s nose into the tent for future reparations. If the senators are motivated by white guilt, I have the cure. About 15 years ago I wrote a “Proclamation of Amnesty and Pardon Granted to All Persons of European Descent” that is available here.

Original Link.