There are people who seek to preserve and protect the fibers of a functional society, the most important of which are decency and morality. Justice Antonin Scalia fought for these values at a time when many others felt it more opportune to destroy these societal pillars, without which no civilization can last. This makes his passing especially tragic and untimely. For the sake of his soul and for the sake of our continued well being, it should also serve as a call to action.
There are certain events that remind people how far and off track society has fallen and this is true in the case of Justice Scalia’s passing. More than the fact that one of the last representatives of what was generally good is now lost to the public, the Supreme Court has had a destructive effect on society for the past 60 years. That cannot go unnoticed.
Eisenhower stated that his two biggest mistakes were both sitting on the Court. Prior to the Warren Court (yes, that glowing light unto humanity Earl Warren, who had knowingly rounded up patriotic Americans of Japanese descent, to say nothing of how he later ransacked democracy by decreeing societal standards by fiat), it was understood that schooling needed to be coupled with the teaching of morality and of our Creator (albeit not through the eyes of any denomination) for a child to turn out decently. Life was considered sacred. The unborn were not dehumanized, and as a result, neither were the elderly or the frail.
The advancements in human rights could have, and largely did, happen by way of Executive Order. Whatever good the Court did in this important area, it caused far more societal harm in others, and any fair evaluation needs to be one of its total effect. Even the farthest of those on the left would be hard-pressed to defend how unelected lifetime appointed elites should be given the power to unilaterally change society.
Yes, some of what was done mirrored what was happening in electoral politics, the dangers of which became crystal clear (or should have) in 1972, when 37.5% of the country saw fit to vote for someone who wanted government control of everything, under the guise of allowing people to live with no purpose (the root of the hedonistic appeal of radical US socialism). Yet even McGovern, who would have impoverished America with his foolhardy approach to the economy and would have risked its existence with his equal brilliance in the area of national security, only wanted government to employ far too many citizens. He was not primarily interested in uprooting the societal and moral fabric of civilization.
There are problems with the philosophies of what are commonly referred to as “both sides of the aisle.” Both seem immune to the dire effects of overusing prisons, as opposed to sentences of menial labor that do not break up families in the process, do not turn wayward youth into career criminals and do not cause hopelessness to the point that large numbers of convicts become prone to being recruited by active terror cells (all of these have happened at alarming rates as a result). Both seem averse to thinking outside of the box on any number of issues and both fail to see the importance of manufacturing and of manufacturing jobs as the only way for a stable economy to continue.
Yet there is a clear difference between one side and the other. And one person who tried to preserve those principles that have served as the foundation of any successful society is now lost to the nation. It is time to realize that he represented a remnant of what should always be, of basic common sense, and his loss should serve as a call to make right today’s wrongs.
Our Sages teach us of the great friendship of Rebbi (Rabbi Yehuda HaNasi), the leader of the Jewish People, and the Roman Emperor Antoninus, who learned so much from Torah and from G-dly wisdom. How fitting was the name of Justice Antonin Scalia.