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by • July 5, 2023 • OpinionComments (0)311

Supreme Court Rulings Can Only be Understood by Looking at the Big Picture

Conservatives have a Scary, Well-Funded Vision Being Enacted in Real Time

A compromised Supreme Court, led by corrupt conservative activist judges who think billionaire “friends” offer free vacations because of their riveting personalities, handed down a series of highly controversial decisions. In what looks more like a project than a docket, right wing court members bucked public opinion to remake our nation in their narrow, distorted image.

Analyzing the individual decisions is barely useful because it doesn’t tell the real story. One must look at the big picture to understand that the Supreme Court is but one cog in an overarching, well-funded project, conducted by apparatchiks and ideologues, who are working for a political movement instead of America.

In this Orwellian new world, people of fundamentalist faith are at the top of the totem pole. We must all bow down and give them special privileges, because they allegedly have deep consciences worthy of unique protection, while everyone else’s beliefs are deemed shallow, unprotected preferences.

To carry out this unpopular agenda, the conservative movement had to invent thinly veiled rationales. For example, they peddle “originalism”, basing opinions on guessing what the nation’s founders intended when they wrote the Constitution. This is a convenient way of jurisprudence if one is looking to base opinions on a time when women, racial minorities and LGBTQ people were second class citizens or slaves.

So, what does the big picture tell us?

  • The right wing is creating an America where we must live by the rules set by their preferred fundamentalist churches, even as the nation is becoming less religious and church attendance is plummeting.
  • They view women as baby making incubators who have no right to bodily autonomy or reproductive freedom.
  • They believe there is no right to privacy or equal protection. Many laws that shield LGBTQ people are invalid because they derived from liberal courts who invented these rights from whole cloth due to political correctness.
  • The rich and privileged don’t have to play by the same rules. A Supreme Court member can have a billionaire sugar daddy posing as a “friend”, while the average Joe is mooching if they receive student loan forgiveness. It’s why they deem affirmative action wrong at colleges based on race but have no issue providing special consideration for wealthy legacies.
  • They embrace the interests of white nationalists while simultaneously insisting that the United States has moved past racism – whether for affirmative action or voting rights. This delusional fantasy world blithely ignores American history and sweeps our nation’s current racial divisions, exacerbated by Republicans, under the carpet.
  • Their true agenda can be elucidated by the actions taken by the Republican base. For example, the Southern Baptist Convention just cracked down on women pastors, showing utter contempt for our mothers and sisters. According to Christianity Today:

The SBC moved to change its foundational documents to reiterate its stance: amending its constitution to explicitly state that cooperating churches must restrict “any kind” of pastor to qualified men and rewording its faith statement to say that “pastors/overseers/elders” are male.

The Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade was meant to appease these SBC Neanderthals who believe that men are superior to women. In their view, God placed men on earth to lead, and women are to follow. The fact that this movement is willing to elevate (for now) Amy Coney Barrett, a certified handmaid, to do its bidding shows its cynicism, not a commitment to equality.

In 303 Creative L.L.C. v. Elenis, a case where a web designer did not want to provide services for same-sex weddings, the Supreme Court ruled on the question: “whether applying a public-accommodation law to compel an artist to speak or stay silent violates the free speech clause of the First Amendment.”

If this case were decided in a vacuum, it would be more palatable. But the real goal of the right wing can be seen in Florida, where Gov. Ron DeSantis helped enact a new that law that lets medical providers deny service to patients based on their religious beliefs. Metro Weekly reports:

Under the law, which goes into effect on July 1, any medical provider, including doctors, nurses, ambulance drivers, pharmacists, mental health professionals, or lab technicians, as well as nursing home workers and hospital administrators, may refuse to provide care to patients if doing so would violate their conscience. Insurance companies also enjoy the right to deny care based on any moral, ethical, or religious objections.

Here is the part where you’re expecting me to give you the silver lining. Sorry, but I can’t deceive you. We have been outflanked and outspent by the conservative movement. Led by the sinister Alliance Defending Freedom and the Federalist Society, the right wing has injected billions of dollars into their successful bid to hijack an America increasingly at odds with their medieval agenda.

They have also created a wealthy media machine that supports think tanks, television stations, talk radio, books and magazines and Internet opinion leaders. Americans are hearing and seeing their messages at a spectacular rate that far exceeds the dissemination of other ideas. The results speak for themselves.

Meanwhile, the progressive and LGBTQ movement are by comparison destructively penny-pinching and lack vision and commitment. Unless our side gets serious and infuses our causes and political organizations with billions of dollars, the bad guys could win.

Indeed, today they did.

Conservatives changed the rules to allow dark money and then flooded their coffers with tsunamis of cash. Meanwhile, we hopelessly grope in the dark pretending that we can play by the old rules where money didn’t matter as much. Keep telling yourself that tale as the billionaire sugar daddies of Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito host them on fancy vacations.

It’s worth noting that both men looked well rested when they returned to the bench from these luxury trips, just in time to turn back the clock several decades and erase America’s progress.

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