There's another code word in the liberal lexicon: "empathy." As described in the WSJ,
"Empathy" is the latest code word for liberal activism, for treating the Constitution as malleable clay to be kneaded and molded in whatever form justices want. It represents an expansive view of the judiciary in which courts create policy that couldn't pass the legislative branch or, if it did, would generate voter backlash.In the same way "deficit reductions" means higher taxes, "assault weapons" was coined for gun control and "Choice" only applies to abortion, the liberals have debauched another discourse. So in the liberal mind it's just fine to subvert the separation of powers defined in the U.S Constitution as long as your doing so out of "empathy" (though empathy becomes a slippery term that is relative to the world view of the liberal).
Judge Sonia Sotomayor, Barack Obama's nominee for the Supreme Court, has become their poster child for "empathy." In their world, "personal experience and cultural identity are the better part of judicial wisdom." Instead of justice being blind, you have to become blind to justice and focus on your life experiences and how they make you feel. Woe be to the dairy industry of Sotomayor is lactose intolerant.
Obama's speech introducing Sotomoyar revealed his agenda:
"Experience being tested by obstacles and barriers, by hardship and misfortune; experience insisting, persisting, and ultimately overcoming those barriers . . . it is experience that can give a person a common touch of compassion; an understanding of how the world works and how ordinary people live. And that is why it is a necessary ingredient in the kind of Justice we need on the Supreme Court."
It's important to note that Obama is not saying that experience in and of itself it a necessary ingredient for justice. He is pointing to a certain kind of experience being necessary in the "kind of justice we need." So much for diversity. So much for equality in a blind justice system. Obama is looking for a "kind of justice" not as defined by the Constitution, but by his perception of the world.
Sotomayor's comments at Duke University on why students should clerk at the appellate court level reveals her agenda:
The saw is that if you’re going into academia, you’re going to teach, or as Judge Lucero just said, public interest law, all of the legal defense funds out there, they’re looking for people with court of appeals experience, because it is — court of appeals is where policy is made. And I know — and I know this is on tape and I should never say that because we don’t make law, I know. OK, I know.Oh, yes, I know, I know, I know those of you who get your talking points from The Huffington Post or Media Matters will prattle that the comment was taken out of context. That she later said that she was not advocating that . . . and you (like your sense-free sources) ignore that she said she did not promote it with a chuckle and wink. So as a service to you, I am dropping the YouTube video of her comments below and you make the call.
Well, since this is my site I'm going to make the call first. Sotamayor concocts an interesting explanation of her comments concerning higher courts when she contrives that one is no longer looking at "the facts of the case" but how the law is developing along with the ramifications your decision will have over the next step of the law's development. In other words, a justice is no longer supposed to be judging the case based on its individual merits, the current law or constitutional framing, but instead should judge it on how they believe the law will develop (founded on their personal "experience" and belief system, of course), and the judge needs to predetermine the precedent they want to establish for future related decisions.
That, my friends, is the very definition of judicial activism . . . or as the left puts it, "empathy."