March 28, 2005

Federalism Hypocrites (tip to Kudlow)

Many anti-Terri people have been trying to say that it's none of our business and the family ought to decide the issue. The fact that the issue is already in the Court system, meaning the government already intervened and that the family is incapable of deciding the issue alone, doesn't seem to occur to them.

But what's interesting is that many (though certainly not all) of the anti-Terri people were in favor of Reno's illegal grabbing of Elian. Janet Reno defied an 11th Circuit court order placing Elian with the Miami family and defied the INS determination that Elian stay with that family pending a decision, and simply grabbed him.

Three big differences:
1) Unlike the intervention for Terri, Reno's grabbing of Elian worsened his condition by sending him to Cuba, which is both much poorer than the US and almost totally unfree
2) With the Congressional intervention for Terri the legislature simply extended her right of habeas corpus in the federal court system; Reno directly disobeyed a court ordered and circumvented the court system and the rule of law
3) The Congress is SUPPOSED to make laws, so it was constitutionally justified, but Reno's only supposed to enforce the laws as written (by Congress) and interpreted (by the courts), so Reno's move was unconstitutional and violated the balance of powers

Again, a lot of people apathetic or hostile to Terri's plight had little or no sympathy for the kidnapping of Elian Gonzalez, but it's a special kind of hypocrisy for those who wanted to thwart both Elian and Terri - not least since they now seem to relish in trying to find examples of Republican hypocrisy on this issue.

Apparently some Democrats are willing to cheer the Justice Department conducting a nighttime raid to kindnap a boy in utter defiance of courts and law if it sends him back to a Communist prison, but unwilling to let Congress exercise its constitutional duty to grant an incapacitated woman access to federal courts to have just one of the many judicial appeal rights we afford to convicted murderers.

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