If the Supreme Court announces a controversial ruling on a case brought before that body, you can count on Justice Antonin Scalia to consistently be on the wrong side of history. He was wrong about Gore v Bush, he was wrong about Citizens United, and in the past couple of days he's been wrong on affirmative action and the repeal of vital sections of the Voting Rights Act, and yesterday he had a shit-fit of a dissent over the Court's decision to invalidate the Defense of Marriage Act in favor of gay marriage.
Yesterday's ruling on gay marriage rights is a perfect example of why Scalia will go down in history as one of America's worst Supreme Court Justices. I'm going to take a couple of words from Scalia's dissent and replace them with another word, and hopefully it will give the reader an opportunity to view his commentary from a historical perspective.
"It is one thing for a society to elect change; it is another for a court of law to impose change by adjudging those who oppose it hostes humani generis, enemies of the human race," Scalia wrote, accusing the majority of "declaring anyone opposed to segregation an enemy of human decency ... In the majority’s telling, this story is black-and-white: Hate your neighbor or come along with us."
Of course, yesterday's ruling on DOMA wasn't about "segregation", but about the equal protection of the law for all citizens, even those who marry members of the same gender. But if you read Scalia's quote and include "segregation" instead of "same-sex marriage", you get a glimpse of what the man would have written about the Court's opinions concerning Jim Crow laws, or even the abolition of slavery itself.
If Scalia had been on the Court during Lincoln's term he would have argued for states rights, insisting that each state has the right to determine whether or not free men can own and profit from the labor of indentured servants. Had he been on the Court during the heart of the Civil Rights movement, Scalia would have argued (loudly) against federally mandated laws ending segregation.
Antonin Scalia is a perfect example of what an activist jurist looks like. He twists and contorts his version of the Constitution to suit whatever conservative cause is at risk, and refuses to see himself as a partisan hack.
And we're stuck with the hateful bastard until he passes away to that great Good ol' Boy Cigar Club in the sky.