About a month ago, Adrastros wrote an I Told You So piece about a rather happy occasion, the indictment of Failed Corrupt President Donald Trump. This is also an I Told You So piece, but about something much less good.
From time to time over the last five years, I would read and hear about a nefarious right-wing plan. People like Elie Mystal, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ezra Klein, and Chris Hayes would mention it. The idea was right out of the worst Federalist Society fever dream:
Come up with court cases based on outrageous premises, often hypothetical, and keep appealing them until you get to the Supreme Court. Because no matter how ridiculous, eventually some of them will end up on the Big Docket.
The Very Serious and Reasoned Minds of the Centrist Discourse did what comes naturally to them: react to this concern with dismissive condescension because those silly lefties are once again overreacting. This is, my friend, the Supreme Court, the unassailable Supreme Court.
Unfortunately, last week we had that I Told You So moment when the Supreme Court decided in favor of one of those ridiculous cases. The Council of High Priests and Pets of Billionaires dropped a 6-3 decision on Friday that a Colorado woman could refuse to do a web design for a gay wedding.
Not just run-of-the-mill institutional homophobia, this. It was based on complete nonsense. I’ll allow the Associated Press to explain.
So, this person Lorie Smith who brought the lawsuit more or less was playing the hypothetical game, assuming that she would be overwhelmed with gay marriage website requests based on nothing more than her own imagination. You know, right-wing imagination…the same thing that brought us Jade Helm, Obama’s nefarious plan to invade Texas. From the AP:
Smith named Stewart — and included a website service request from him, listing his phone number and email address in 2017 court documents. But Stewart told The Associated Press he never submitted the request and didn’t know his name was invoked in the lawsuit until he was contacted this week by a reporter from The New Republic, which first reported his denial.
“I was incredibly surprised given the fact that I’ve been happily married to a woman for the last 15 years,” said Stewart, who declined to give his last name for fear of harassment and threats. His contact information, but not his last name, were listed in court documents.
He added that he was a designer and “could design my own website if I need to” — and was concerned no one had checked into the validity of the request cited by Smith until recently.
This single ruling has set off all kinds of alarm bells that this was a test case and a first step in taking down Obergefell, aka the gay marriage decision, and Bostock, aka the decision affirming that the prohibition on sex discrimination in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 extends to discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Those who scoff at such a notion obviously are the same people who scoffed at the silly lefty gals who were warning Roe was in trouble.
What’s next here? One could very easily see a Republican diner owner in a low-crime area bringing suit that he should not be forced to serve “thug” gang members even if he never sees any actual gang members within 100 miles of his diner. The Supreme Court could then decide that lunch counter owner could turn away, for instance, three Black people because their NBA gear makes them look “thuggish” to any racist white person afraid of their own shadow because the shadow is dark.
The reality of the modern American right, which sadly includes the Republican Party base, is that they play a long game and play for keeps, and are not afraid to use power, whether or not it is legitimate. They operate on the idea that eventually the public will lose interest, that enough Just-Asking-Questions centrist types will give them cover no matter what they do, and that Dems and liberals will be slow to react to their power plays because they will ignore early warnings. Too much of the DC punditry that you see on the Sunday morning shows are refusing to see this, and are quick to pounce on any Democratic attempt to flex our muscles of political power as outlandish and beyond norms. So, some Democratic leaders have cold feet because they are intimidated by this.
It is not sustainable. Our president, who has a low approval rating he does not deserve, shows signs of willingness to fight. Joe Biden is in perhaps the toughest bind of any president in recent memory, facing batshit nutty threats from the opposition party and their enablers, threats that are direct attacks on the rights of specific populations of Americans. Meanwhile, he faces a press that acts like a boyfriend who misses their -ex (Trum), who give the right too many benefits of the doubt and seem to focus on any perceived miscue or slight by Democrats. It is flat-out madness.
Not doing something that some might consider radical has only enabled things that are radical. I am hopeful that we have a president in Joe Biden who understands it might take something allegedly radical to fix the problem presented to us by a corrupt, cruel, and outwardly anti-democratic Supreme Court. He has been underestimated so many times before.
The last word goes to Aimee Mann.