Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Sham Drama

Roberts Repeatedly Dodges Roe V. Wade

Today's proceedings are an actual test of the merits of putting John Roberts at the head of the Supreme Court like House, MD is a real drama. In both cases, the conclusion--confirmation in this case, diagnosis and cure in that one--is foregone, and the rest is play-acting to delay the inevitable.

There's a difference, of course--I watch House (which returns tonight, when I'll be in class, darn the luck) to be entertained, and by golly, the play-acting of Hugh Laurie and company does the job. But people are watching, and reading about, these hearings to be informed regarding the views of a man who is going to be leading the Court for a very long time unless he has a genetic defect of which we know not. (Considering Bush was asking potential justices about the minutiae of their exercise habits, I'm betting the health of the clan Roberts has been studied and its longevity well attested.) And they will not get much information.

They did get one tidbit this morning: When asked about his pro bono work on Romer V. Evans, a gay rights case that he forgot to note on his list of cases to which he contributed time, Roberts said only that he never turned down a request for assistance, declining to answer Sen. Arlen Specter's query about whether helping on a case meant, at least, that it didn't present a big moral problem for Roberts. Which means that, given the chance to say he doesn't have a big moral problem with upholding the idea that the Constitution at least forbids laws written with the sole intent of discriminating against gays and lesbians, Roberts demurred. Not a good sign. But then, it wasn't a good sign that he dressed up his family like Victorians for his unveiling as the nominee; should we be stunned if he turns out to have Victorian values?

1 comment:

Jessica said...

I watch House, too. However, a week ago I saw Hugh Laurie on either Letterman or Leno (can't remember which), and he's BRITISH! Talk about weird! I can't watch it the same way now--I hear his very American accent and know now it's pretty fake...and pretty good.