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Chief Justice Roberts’ Dred Scott Moment

A shocking violation of the founding principle of our great republic, individual rights.

by
Pamela Geller

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July 4, 2012 - 12:24 am

In 1857 the U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling that forever changed the course of human history. Infamously known as the Dred Scott decision, the Court ruled that states that outlawed slavery could not forbid slaveowners from bringing slaves into their states and holding them as slaves there. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney wrote that blacks were,

beings of an inferior order, and altogether unfit to associate with the white race, either in social or political relations, and so far inferior that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect.

This was a shocking violation of the founding principle of our great republic, individual rights. Clearly, personal subjectivity and partisan politics motivated this ruling. And here we are again, courtesy of Chief Justice John Roberts.

Slavery persisted as a contentious issue our Founding Fathers battled only to acquiesce to the South’s demands when it became painfully clear that there would be no United States of America if they banished slavery. The thinking, of course, was that it would be determined at a future date. And it was. It was bloodily and brutally settled with the Civil War.

Judge Roberts’ decision will produce a comparably deleterious outcome. His unconstitutional decision on Obamacare mandates the slavery of the American people to the U.S. government, forcing us to make health care decisions in accord with government fiat. Further, the taxes will prove so prohibitive as to enslave the people and make all productive Americans wards of the federal government. “To be a socialist,” said Joseph Goebbels, “is to submit the I to the Thou. Socialism is sacrificing the individual to the whole.” Is that not what Obama is doing?
“Socialism,” said Ayn Rand, “is the doctrine that man has no right to exist for his own sake, that his life and his work do not belong to him, but belong to society, that the only justification of his existence is his service to society, and that society may dispose of him in any way it pleases for the sake of whatever it deems to be its own tribal, collective good.” Obamacare mandates exactly that: the productive exist for the aid of the non-productive, and all must change their behavior to conform with what the state prescribes as the good.

Roberts’ decision, like Taney’s, will not be without consequences. I fear that it will result in rage and the blind violence of a civil war. The American people cannot be cowed into resignation, submission, or passivity. As Ayn Rand said: “Defiance, not obedience, is the Americans’ answer to overbearing authority. The Nation that ran an Underground Railroad to help human beings escape from slavery, or began drinking on principle in the face of Prohibition, will not say ‘Yes, sir,’ to the enforcers” of socialized medicine. Not yet, anyway.

“It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices,” Roberts wrote. It is not his job to make that determination. It is his job to determine the Constitutionality of particular laws. The only good thing that can be taken away from the Dred Scott decision was that they ruled, for the very first time, that an act of Congress was unconstitutional — so a precedent had been set, even if it was a horrible decision. Obamacare undermines and nullifies states’ rights, much the way as Dred Scott.

Just as Chief Justice Taney had hoped to settle the issue of slavery with the Court’s decision, Chief Justice Roberts hoped for the same. But it will have the opposite effect. Abraham Lincoln, the second-ever Republican nominee for president, won in 1860, that key presidential election, on the platform of stopping the further expansion of slavery. We can expect history to repeat itself in 2012, if and only if Mitt Romney seizes this historic opportunity to restore the American principle of individual rights and unabashedly drive collectivism and statism into the grave, along with the hundreds of millions of victims of socialism and communism.

Pamela Geller is the editor and publisher of Atlas Shrugs.com. She is the author of The Post-American Presidency.
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