The Supreme Court's decision barring execution of murderers who commit their crime before age 18 as cruel and unusual punishment is not only fundamentally flawed, but also deeply troubling -- for more than just a few reasons.
In its 5-4 decision on March 1, the Court decreed that "Juveniles are less mature than adults and, no matter how heinous their crimes, they are not among 'the worst offenders' who deserve to die."
While I certainly respect that opinion, I strongly object to the United States Supreme Court presuming to impose it on our entire society as if it is the final arbiter not just of the law, but our moral standards.
Adding insult to injury, the Court doesn't even deny its staggering presumptuousness. In the words of the ever-disappointing Justice Kennedy, writing for the majority, "To implement this framework we have established the propriety and affirmed the necessity of referring to 'the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society' to determine which punishments are so disproportionate as to be cruel and unusual."
How much more explicit could the Court be in affirming the shifting, baseless standards of moral relativism? Quite a far cry, is it not, from a Constitutional and legal system grounded in the absolute standards emanating from the Judeo-Christian ethic?
Forget the merits of the Court's position in light of the rampant licentiousness that pervades our postmodern era. Such questions can be debated. But are you comfortable with the highest court of the land issuing a binding pronouncement that we have evolving standards of decency?
What business is it of the Court's to make such broad sweeping determinations having nothing whatever to do with law? Besides, I thought liberals objected to the "legislation" of morality, which is precisely what is involved here. The Court, in its colossal arrogance, is rejecting the biblical view of the inherent depravity of human nature in favor of the humanistic, New Age precept that humankind is progressing on a linear path to enlightenment.
As if its endorsement of moral relativism were not enough, the Court went on to misapply its own guidelines in interpreting what society's "evolving" moral standards happen to be at this time. As Justice Scalia noted in his dissent, these societal standards are to be gleaned by reference to a national consensus, which in turn is to be determined by an objective standard: the statutes passed by society's elected representatives.
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