Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The compromisin’ court? Or should we think of them as do-nothings?

I thought for sure we’d hear the whining and screaming from people all upset that the Supreme Court of the United States, bogged down in a politically-partisan tie due to being a member short, failed to uphold a provision of the Affordable Care Act.

That the ideologues who don’t want President Barack Obama to have a political victory by providing access to health insurance for the masses would be upset that the 4-4 tie would result in a lower court being upheld in its decision to strike down parts of the act.

BUT THAT’S NOT what wound up happening. In fact, I could see how it would be the conservative ideologues who were counting on the court’s partisan split and shortfall of a member to result in a positive ruling by default.

Instead, the nation’s high court wound up issuing about as sensible a ruling as could be achieved. They unanimously issued an order saying the lower courts need to come up with a compromise situation. One that would appease all.

Although when it comes to Barack Obama and abortion, there probably is no such thing as something for everyone.

The issue at stake in this case was that certain entities don’t want to have to include medical coverage in the health insurance packages they offer their employees that would cover a woman’s ability to terminate a pregnancy.

THEY WANT TO think that if people work for them, then they somehow forfeit their access to what has been a fully legitimate and legal medical procedure since the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court ruling of 1973.

Appeals courts with a partisan leaning had ruled those companies could get away with such narrow-minded thinking.

Had the court given in to the 4-4 split caused by the death earlier this year of Justice Antonin Scalia, that ruling would have been upheld by default. The lower court’s ruling would have stood.

Instead, the high court came up with their idea of a compromise, which shows a willingness to not let partisan politics become the cause of creation of the rule of law.

IF ANYTHING, THIS court decision affirms my basic faith in government. Because I have come to believe that while our government officials are always capable of doing something incredible stupid, shallow and narrow-minded, every now and then they will be capable of doing the right thing.

If anything, it is the reason why people who talk about throwing out our government and issue penny-ante talk of revolution (including many of those how talking about backing Bernie Sanders for president) usually strike me as being fairly shallow thinkers.

It will be interesting to see how the appeals courts wind up resolving this issue.

Because they’re going to have to figure out what constitutes compromise. They’re going to have to come up with the way of letting religious organizations express their opposition to abortion without actually interfering with a woman’s right to decide for herself what she should do with her body.

BELIEVE IT OR not, that is a very radical thought for some of those religiously-motivated people. Then again, for many of them they just want to use “God” as an excuse to tell women (and all other people) what they can or cannot do.

I don’t know how this situation will resolve itself, or what the compromise will look like. For all I know, the appeals courts may wind up failing, and it will come down to a Supreme Court of the future ultimately having to make the decision.

If it does turn out that way, let’s hope the court shows as much responsibility in the future as it did on Monday.

Even though I’m sure if it does happen that way, the conservative ideologues of our society will wind up reviling such a decision the way the masses of our society still sneer at the way the high court resolved the 2000 election voter count.


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