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County Hall Corner: Three Cheers for the Supreme Court

The irony of the mainstream media is that they honestly do not see how biased they are. Here is a classic example from the Associated Press (AP). Their lead sentence in a July 1st article stated, “The Supreme Court just finished issuing its biggest decisions of the term, killing President Joe Biden’s $400 billion plan to cancel or reduce federal student loan debts, ending affirmative action in higher education and issuing a major decision that impacts gay rights.”

Notice the choice of words, “killing,” “ending,” “impacts gay rights.” From another frame of reference (hint: the US Constitution), the Supreme Court ruled in Biden v. Nebraska that the President of the United States did not have powers to forgive government debt without the approval of the US Congress. In Students for Fair Admission v. Harvard and a second case, Students for Fair Admission v University of North Carolina, the Supreme Court ruled that colleges violated equal rights in their admission process and thus should not judge on the basis of race, known as affirmative action. And in 303 Creative LLC v. Elenis, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of a devout Christian graphic designer who refused to create a same-sex wedding website on the basis of his religious beliefs.

All three of these key decisions fall back on the fundamental foundations of our country; the separation of powers, equality, and individual freedom. Yet the screams from the left focus on the pragmatic aspect of these initiatives. For example, student debt is truly a national disaster; no argument from anyone on that point. But it was created by student loans that the US government made available, which gave institutions of higher learning an open door to raise their tuition and costs to ridiculous levels. According to US News and World Report, college costs have more than doubled in the past twenty years.

This debt is growing with no end in sight. It currently is estimated at $1.6 trillion owed by 48 million people, having grown by 70 percent in the last decade, according to the Student Borrower Protection Center. Amazingly, seven percent of these borrowers owe over $100,000 in student loans. Even the average student loan takes seventeen years to pay back. Because these debts saddle whole families for decades on end, it impacts our entire economy.

President Biden’s answer was to grant “forgiveness” for some amounts of these loans, which would be covered by taxpayers. His problem was that he did not have that authority, as it must come from Congress. And this is exactly what the Supreme Court ruled.

Right on cue, the political knives came out. Former Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi condemned this decision from the Supreme Court when it was announced and commended President Biden for his effort on behalf of the debtors. Yet, two years ago, in July 2021, she stated, “People think that the president of the United States has the power for student loan debt forgiveness. He does not. That has to be an act of Congress.” In an irony of ironies, in his majority opinion to help explain why President Biden’s student loan handout was unconstitutional, Chief Justice John Roberts cited this very quote from Nancy Pelosi.

All three decisions are historic landmarks. The separation of powers needs to be respected; Congress should stop abdicating its responsibilities and reel in the massive overreach of the executive branch of the federal government. The five essential freedoms in the first amendment guaranteeing the freedom of religion, speech, the press, assembly, and the right to petition the Government for a redress of grievances must always be protected.

And rather than lament the demise of affirmative action, its loss will eventually be celebrated. It is demeaning for a doctor, lawyer, scientist, or professor who is a person of color to be quietly suspected of being a second-class professional. Instead, we should remember the inspiring words of Martin Luther King, Jr., “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”