Do they feel just?

October 26, 2020

The Supreme Court under a dark storm cloud.

I’m just a simple email marketer but I have thoughts about the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court tonight.

A lot of anger at the shameful process, the blatant hypocrisy of the Republican-led Senate, the fear that comes with a conservative majority Supreme Court ruling in favor of policies driven by extreme religious views, and fear for all of the pain and damage this court is bound to inflict on minorities, LGBTQ+ communities, immigrants, the poor, and democracy itself over the coming decades…

The same feelings anyone with a shred of decency and any semblance of a functioning soul ought to be feeling right now.

But beyond that, one question keeps nagging me.

How does Amy Coney Barrett feel about everything?

Or Neil Gorsuch or Brett Kavanaugh? Do they feel proud of their “achievements”? Do they feel that the process was honorable? That they truly deserve and are worthy of the positions to which they’ve been appointed?

Do they feel just?

Although they are clearly oblivious to the needs and challenges of huge portions of the American population, I can’t imagine they are oblivious to the media. They have to be exposed to the protests and indignation so many people around the country have voiced. Even if they are insulated against all of that. Surely they’ve noticed the protests of Democrats in Congress?

How do they go about their work with that lingering over everything? Do they care at all?

Judges are referred to as “Honorable” when being addressed. But, especially in the case of Amy Coney Barrett, nothing about the nomination and confirmation process was—by any objective measure—honorable. How will that affect her work? Will she try to work towards the honor that is supposed to flow from the highest court in America? Or will she be corrupted by everyone’s anger at her appointment and rule based not on precedent but on vindication instead?

I’d like to think that—especially in the cases of Amy Coney Barrett and Brett Kavanaugh—that the Supreme Court will bring out the best in its Justices and that each one will comport themselves in a manner befitting their positions, but I don’t have high hopes. If they were truly honorable, they would have protested the disgraceful confirmation process instead of partaking in it. Amy Coney Barrett would have held Republicans to their own precedent set during Merrick Garland’s nomination or withdrawn from the nomination like dozens of her colleagues at Notre Dame urged her to do.

But she didn’t.

I’m sure there’s so much of the process that I don’t understand. So much of the inner workings of the judicial branch that are way above my head. After all, I am just a simple email marketer. But I do know that our elected representatives and those appointed by them have taken part in one of the most shameful and nefarious acts in recent history.

I’m feeling a lot of things tonight. But the most overwhelming feeling is that of disappointment in the system that is clearly failing all of us, on the right and the left.