Friday, September 10, 2004

More thoughts on activist judges

Each time the activist judges idea is mentioned, I get some new thoughts on the issue. It seems to me that those who cite "activist judges" no matter what they "act" on are just saying that they are opposed to the way a particular case is decided. For instance, a federal judge who rules for the NRA on gun controls citing the second amendment is an activist. He is making a determination about the meaning of that amendment. A judge who says vouchers can be used to pay the cost of sending students to religious schools is making a determination of the meaning of the first amendment. Anytime that a judge rules on any element of the Constitution, he or she is making an activist statement for one side or the other. If a case is in court, there are two sides to the issue. The losing side can always call the judge activist while the winning side can say the ruling was right on the law. Who's right? The judge, unless he's overruled by a higher court.


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