Prosecute the torture.

April 5, 2005

Law and Order and Senator Cornyn

In light of Maria's recent death threats, I'd like to take a moment to reflect on the Right's "culture of life" and what Republican Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) said on the Senate Floor. It is being reported at the Washington Post that he said:
I don't know if there is a cause-and-effect connection but we have seen some recent episodes of courthouse violence in this country. Certainly nothing new, but we seem to have run through a spate of courthouse violence recently that's been on the news and I wonder whether there may be some connection between the perception in some quarters on some occasions where judges are making political decisions yet are unaccountable to the public, that it builds up and builds up and builds up to the point where some people engage in - engage in violence.
By the way, the Senator said this after the death of Pope John Paul II:

In a world that frequently rejects the idea of moral absolutes, John Paul politely but firmly offered truth, love and justice.

and:
He fought against the culture of death as an eloquent spokesman for the value and dignity of every human life.
But of the violence against judges, he said that he wonders whether there's some connection between the perception that judges are making political decisions unaccountable to the public and the violence against them.

First off, it's completely wrong. In an article printed in the New York Times, US District Court Judge John Kane had this to say about violence against judges:

Since 1970, 10 state and federal judges have been murdered, seven of them in job-related incidents. Those who threaten judges are almost always disturbed individuals seeking revenge. (The murderer of the mother and husband of the judge in Chicago was sadly typical: he was an embittered former plaintiff.) Of the three federal judges killed in the last quarter-century, all were killed by men disgruntled with their treatment from the federal judicial system.

Take a look at the numbers again. 10 state and federal judges have been murdered in the last 35 years.

And take a look at that last sentence again. How does all this mesh with Senator Cornyn's "they brought it on themselves" notion? And even if it were true, how does that mesh with the Brother John's devotion to the "Culture of Life?"

Using Senator John Cornyn's logic, if only the Pope wasn't such a stubborn anti-communist, he wouldn't have brought on that whole assassination thing on himself. I mean, I wonder whether there may be some connection between the perception in some quarters on some occasions where the Pope was making political/social/moral decisions and yet was unaccountable to the people of the world (he certainly wasn't elected by the people of the world), that it builds up and builds up and builds up to the point where some countries engaged in violence to stop him.

Yea, I know. It sickens me too.

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