Mirror of Justice

A blog dedicated to the development of Catholic legal theory.
Affiliated with the Program on Church, State & Society at Notre Dame Law School.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Lawlessness cuts more than one way

The Catholic bishops in the United States need better guidance and more prudence. The USCCB's statement earlier today regarding the Supreme Court decisions in Windsor and Perry includes the following sentence:  "It is also unfortunate that the Court did not take the opportunity to uphold California‚Äôs Proposition 8 but instead decided not to rule on the matter."  Why?  Chief Justice Roberts's opinion makes clear that the Court understood itself *not* to have had lawfully before it the "opportunity" to uphold Proposition 8. Reasonable minds can disagree about whether or not the Court should have found that there was standing in Perry, and thus an "opportunity" to reach the merits, but Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Scalia, Ginsburg, Breyer, and Kagan determined that standing was lacking.  On what basis, then, does the USCCB rebuke the Court for refusing an "opportunity" that the USCCB assuredly cannot demonstrate that the Court possessed?  "Conservative" complaints about so-called "judicial activism" ring hollow when judged against such "activist" grievances.      


Brennan, Patrick | Permalink