Wednesday, January 11, 2006

No to Alito

I don't generally have a high opinion of USA Today but this opinion piece is spot on.

As the writer says:

...when it comes to reviewing government abuse, Samuel Alito is an empty robe... Alito's writings and opinions show a jurist who is willing to yield tremendous authority to the government and offer little in terms of judicial review — views repeatedly rejected not only by his appellate colleagues but also by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Which is a real concern because:

This country is facing one of the most serious constitutional crises in its history. President Bush has claimed virtually absolute authority to act in contradiction of federal and international law... Alito would supply the final vote to shift the balance of power toward a president claiming the powers of a maximum leader.
Just have a look at a couple of cases:

...Garner v. Tennessee. In that case, a police officer shot and killed an unarmed 15-year-old boy when he fled with $10 from a home. Alito supported the right of the officer to kill the boy for failing to stop when ordered. Doe v. Groody, Alito wrote a dissenting opinion arguing that police officers could strip-search a mother and her 10-year-old daughter, despite the fact that neither was named in the search warrant nor suspected of crimes.

If these are not abuses of government power against which the courts in a supposedly free society should protect the people then I'd love to ask Judge Alito what is.

Forget for a moment about the constitutional issues (as important as they are) and ask yourself, do you want to live in a country where the police are free to shoot your unarmed 15 year old son or strip search your ten year old daughter? Or perhaps you're working on the mistaken assumption that this will only happen to someone else's family?

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