Your Responsibility - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1789722

Your Responsibility

On December 9, 2014, I was in the U.S. Supreme Court being sworn in as a member of the U.S. Supreme Court bar. My ultimate dream was that I would one day have the opportunity to argue a case before this august court, as I was now certified and permitted to do.

That is no longer my dream, nor my ambition, nor my wish.

In my view, appearing before the current U.S. Supreme Court is tantamount to stepping back not to the despised 1906 Lochner Court but to the darkest time in our history, some 150 years ago, when the U.S. Supreme Court worked at nullifying the results of the bloody Civil War, and to force the recently freed slaves into a permanent underclass.

Let’s look at today’s Supreme Court: The Roberts Court gave the death blow to collective bargaining, thus assuring increased income disparity for one or more generations. The Roberts Court, in its Citizens United decision, put a “For Sale” sign around the neck of every U.S. representative and every U.S. senator, by giving unlimited power to the mega-rich and corporate power players for buying influence in a corrupt Congress. The Roberts Court disemboweled the Voting Rights Act, enabling the current orchestrated attack by Republicans on the state level to assume the power to invalidate elections when they disapprove of the results.

Did some foreign army march into Washington, D.C., to bring about these death blows to our “democracy”? Nonsense — we did it all by ourselves.

Do you rely for your daily news on a local newspaper filled with real estate ads? Do you supplement your “knowledge” of the news by checking on internet headlines? Or do you have a regular print, newspaper or magazine source for national news?

How often have you stood up in a public hearing to protest against procedures that struck you as unfair? How often have you voiced your disagreement with any government action with a letter to the editor, an email to your congressman, a voiced protest at a public meeting?

How often have you failed to acknowledge someone in public, for fear that neighbors or other village residents might think that you agree with that person’s stated and unpopular views?

How often have you googled a subject of national interest — gun control, income disparity, collective bargaining, racial and religious prejudice, abuses by the police — in order to find more and diverse sources, articles, books, and court decisions on that subject?

Do you think that fighting for democracy is someone else’s responsibility?

Don’t bother giving that more thought, because shortly you won’t have any democracy left to fight for.

Evelyn Konrad

Attorney at law