This time from Chief Justice Roberts’ dissent:
Today the Court strikes down as inadequate the most generous set of procedural protections ever afforded aliens detained by this country as enemy combatants. The political branches crafted these procedures amidst an ongoing military conflict, after much careful investigation and thorough debate. The Court rejects them today out of hand, without bothering to say what due process rights the detainees possess, without explaining how the statute fails to vindicate those rights, and before a single petitioner has even attempted to avail himself of the law’s operation. And to what effect? The majority merely replaces a review system designed by the people’s representatives with a set of shapeless procedures to be defined by federal courts at some future date. One cannot help but think, after surveying the modest practical results of the majority’s ambitious opinion, that this decision is not really about the detainees at all, but about control of federal policy regarding enemy combatants.
A control the JUDICIAL BRANCH is not supposed to HAVE.
Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. – John Adams
From the moment anyone becomes involved with a terror group and devoted to the murder of a country’s citizens to the moment they sever all such links, they have a right to life only in so far as their opponents see advantage in granting it. The killing of terrorists, like the hiring and firing of bureaucrats, is a proper function of the state. We all need to start saying so. – Peter Cuthbertson
I predict that the Bush administration will be seen by freedom-wishing Americans a generation or two hence as the hinge on the cell door locking up our freedom. When my children are my age, they will not be free in any recognizably traditional American meaning of the word. I’d tell them to emigrate, but there’s nowhere left to go. I am left with nauseating near-conviction that I am a member of the last generation in the history of the world that is minimally truly free. – Rev. Donald Sensing
I should start the day with a profound urge to vomit more often. – James Lileks
And, finally, one hopeful quote:
This phenomenon — legal victory that leads to cultural and political defeat — has a long history. In the 1850s, slaveholders collected some huge legal prizes: the Fugitive Slave Act, the Kansas-Nebraska Act, the Dred Scott decision. Those victories produced an anti-slavery movement powerful enough to elect Lincoln and win the Civil War. Sixty years later, the temperance movement won its long battle for national Prohibition. Within a decade, the culture was turning against temperance; Repeal came soon after. In America’s culture wars, the side with the law’s weaponry often manages only to wound themselves. – William J. Stuntz, The Academic Left and the Christian Right, Part II, Tech Central Station 1/4/05
Perhaps. But I’m now more concerned than ever about D.C. v. Heller.