Judge Roberts and right reason

American Life League president Judie Brown issued the following statement regarding the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on John Roberts' nomination as Chief Justice of the United States.

The past week has been a revelation to all of us at American Life League. Pro-life leaders have come out of the woodwork to make positive, laudatory, nearly jubilant statements in support of Judge John Roberts. American Life League cannot join in the festivities. We have grave concerns.

When asked by Senator Arlen Specter about his opinion regarding Catholic president John F. Kennedy's statement, "I do not speak for my church on public matters and the church does not speak for me," Judge Roberts said he agreed with that statement. For those of us who know how JFK's legacy has led far too many Catholics in public life to support abortion while claiming to be Catholic, we listened with raised eyebrow when Roberts appeared to concur.

We were nearly as concerned when Roberts went to great length defending the 1965 Griswold v. Connecticut decision regarding state laws and contraception. He seemed to be saying that the "right to privacy" that "emanates from the penumbras" of the Constitution did indeed apply in that case and, in fact, does indeed exist. If that is so, then one would question how Roberts could ever vote to overturn Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton by conferring personhood on all innocent human beings from the moment of their creation.

The hearing drama, described as a "kabuki dance," does lead one to question the process. Can a judge exhibit sound, ethical, deliberative positions when he is being put on the hot seat by senators Patrick Leahy, Edward Kennedy and Joseph Biden? These three senators say they're Catholic, but they're relentlessly pro-abortion. They also appear to be totally committed to producing and acting in a circus rather than participating in a serious discussion of ethical and reasonable matters.

After reading the pounds of paper containing opinions, views and quotes from Judge John Roberts, American Life League is left wondering about the process, the man and the questions that were never asked. It is therefore less than prudent for us to applaud, congratulate or even think positively about the judge.

We will wait and see, once he is confirmed, whether he will apply right reason when challenged with the most profound question facing the nation: does any mother have, under a "right of privacy," the authority to murder her child?

Release issued: 19 Sept 05