Frozen by Inaction
Yes, everyone has the right to swing their fist; but no one has the right to swing their fist at my nose. The previous statement is a reworking of the old saw—your rights end at the tip of my nose, but vaccinated Americans need to reiterate their rights to life every chance we get. There is a strong and overwhelming coalition of Democrats, Liberals, and Progressives in America but you would not know it by their actions. Republicans have learned to govern by not only using the bully-pulpit but by just plain bullying. Conservatives will twist the truth, degrade people and scare the bejesus out of their constituents for power. The advantage for Democrats is they can scare their voters with the truth; the democracy is at stake, the health and lives of our children are at risk, and the future of the planet is in danger.
Republicans have learned fighting old battles occupies Democrats and places them in a state of suspended animation.
The fact that Barack Obama was denied a Supreme Court Justice should have sent the Senate Democrats into apoplexy but instead, they effectively rolled over. In 2007, now Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer publicly opposed any new justices George W. Bush might nominate to the court. “The Supreme Court is dangerously out of balance. We cannot afford to see Justice Stevens replaced by another Roberts or Justice Ginsburg by another Alito,” said Schumer. Republicans grabbed onto his statements to portray Schumer as a hypocrite during their end-run around the Constitution blocking Merrick Garland’s nomination by Mr. Obama in 2016.
Ironically, Schumer was correct, Chief Justice Roberts’ confirmation set into motion the destruction of sections 4-5 of the Voter’s Rights Act, a position long held by Roberts. This has led directly to the return of current laws discriminating against people of color. His siding with the 5-4 majority also laid the groundwork for Republican legislators to rig the system for upcoming elections.
Part of the process of mooring liberal thinkers to the past is the failure of Democrats when in power, to codify rules into permanent law. Sections 4-5 of the Voter Rights Act, for example, were subject to continuous recertification and abortion has never been codified into law. With that said, therein Democrats end up refighting to maintain rights successfully adjudicated by the Supreme Court for nearly 50 or 60 years. In June of 2020 Republican Senator Rand Paul said, It could implicate people who got into a bar fight, or had an altercation that led to “minor bruising.” Mr. Paul’s objection was to the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act. Yes, America is still wrestling with the “efficacy” of lynching as if it deserves the dignity of discussion.
At the time, then-Senator Kamala Harris of California and current Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey objected to Mr. Paul’s obstinacy, ‘There is no reason other than cruel and deliberate obstruction…’ said Harris. Anti-lynching legislation has been a 120-year battle fought against by both parties in the past and now it seems by some modern Republicans. Aside from Senator Paul, three current Republicans and one former House Republican ( Louie Gohmert, Ted Yoho, and Thomas Massie along with now Independent Justin Amash) voted against the bill. Democrats worked hard to rid the world of Trump in 2020 turning out in unprecedented numbers. That energy must be transferred to local races as well as state and national elections. I realize some liberals are disillusioned by the tossing of a monkey wrench into the Biden works by corporate Democrats. Democrats worked hard in 2020, and I believe in the adage that hard work is its own reward. In this case, working even harder is needed to reach a more satisfying reward.
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