The Senate hearings on the Supreme Court justice nomination have caused an extraordinary stir in the US. The contender for the post, lawyer Amy Coney Barrett – she was nominated by President Donald Trump – is being vilified in the press and on social media, every tiny little detail of her life is being discussed, and every word she utters is being interpreted every which way.
In principle, it is totally natural that the battle for a seat on the Supreme Court should be intense – its rulings on cases cannot be appealed. In fact, it is the Supreme Court that decides the most important issues in US life. For example, it was here it was decided whether the death penalty is constitutional and whether American women have the right to abortion. It was Supreme Court rulings that led to Nixon’s resignation in 1974 and to George W Bush’s victory over Al Gore in the 2000 presidential election.
Supreme Court justices are appointed for life. Essentially, its nine justices determine state policies for decades to come. Their authority seems much stronger than that of the president himself.
By the standards of US gerontocracy, Amy Coney Barrett is a mere child at just forty-eight years of age. Her predecessor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, spent 27 years on the Supreme Court bench. Barrett has every chance of serving on the Supreme Court for much longer. It is unsurprising that millions of Americans have taken such an interest in her possible appointment.
It is President Trump’s third Supreme court nomination. Prior to Barrett, he successfully lobbied for the appointment of Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch. At present, the Republicans have a majority on the Supreme Court. If the Senate votes in favour of Barrett’s nomination, then this majority – six to three – will remain in place for many years to come. Given this, it comes as no surprise that Democrats across the country are in a total panic.
Amy Coney Barrett is the embodiment of all the traditional values of conservative America. A devout Catholic, mother of seven (two of whom are adopted), wife, successful professional and financially independent woman, everything in her life has been achieved through her own hard work.
One might have envied all this, if not for the wave of hatred that swept her way as soon as her nomination was announced. The Democrat-sponsored media is portraying the woman as a religious fundamentalist and arch enemy of feminists and sexual minorities who will abolish abortion, same-sex marriage and even transgender toilets as soon as she takes her seat on the Supreme Court.
Obviously, Barrett will have no such authority. As a highly qualified lawyer, she has repeatedly stated that her personal views have never influenced her court decisions. However, the mud being slung is getting more plentiful by the day.
Democratically concerned social media activists are rebuking Barrett for being a member of the Catholic group People of Praise. In fact, it is an ordinary community of believers that has just 1,800 members throughout the country. However, the Democrats are construing it as some kind of monstrous secret society akin to the nefarious evildoers that Dan Brown is so fond of writing about.
Barrett studied, and then taught for a long time, at the University of Notre Dame. Today, her links to this long-standing and prestigious US university, established almost 200 years ago by the Pontifical Academy in Rome, are being interpreted by her opponents as sinister dealings with the Vatican.
Barrett’s opponents are also querying whether the process for adopting her two children from a beggar in Haiti was all above board. “Who on earth allowed those children to be handed over to a family of religious fanatics?” one of her critics asked on Twitter.
In a tragic twist of fate, Barrett’s predecessor on the Supreme Court, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, was a committed Democrat and one of the most influential feminists of her time. It was largely at her instigation that same-sex marriage was legalised in the country.
Back in September, the 87-year-old Ginsburg told family: “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.” She sincerely believed that Trump would lose and the new president, Joe Biden, would nominate a Democrat to replace her after her death. However, Ginsburg died on 19 September, plunging her fans across the country into mourning.
No matter how hard Barrett’s opponents have tried, they have been unable to dig up anything really compromising about her. Attempts were made to bring down the previous Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, using good old harassment. A quarter of a century ago, allegedly, Kavanaugh made a bad joke in a telephone conversation with a young woman. The accusations seemed so far-fetched, however, that they were unable to cause the lawyer any real harm. The Senate approved his nomination to the Supreme Court.
These kinds of tactics will especially not work with Barrett. Unlike many Democrat politicians, her reputation seems pretty much untarnished. She has never smoked marijuana like Barack Obama, or been unfaithful like Bill Clinton, or had sex with a married man to advance her career like Kamala Harris.
Desperate to accuse her of something serious, America’s democratic society has started hounding Barrett with trifles. At a recent Senate hearing, the lawyer said: “I have never discriminated on the basis of sexual preference and would not ever discriminate on the basis of sexual preference.” At literally the exact same moment, democratic journalists informed the world that the term “sexual preferences” was no longer allowed as it is “offensive, outdated, and hurts the feelings of the LGBT community”. News headlines proclaimed Barrett an enemy of LGBT people.
Looking in from the outside, it seems strange that democratic activists whose credo appears to be fighting for gender equality should be giving a woman such a hard time. They seem to have forgotten that Barrett is a member of a group that has been suffering under the yoke of patriarchy for centuries.
It is obvious that, despite her religious beliefs, Barrett is actually the embodiment of the feminist ideal in the traditional sense. She received a fantastic education and herself became a favourite professor of thousands of students. She has managed to succeed in the tough and traditionally masculine field of jurisprudence in the US. In addition, she has built a close-knit family and secured a good income: she earns around $220,000 a year working at the appeals court and her seat on the Supreme Court will earn her around $270,000.
Half a century ago, Barrett would have been a feminist icon – a strong, successful, accomplished, professional woman. Today, however, it is actually the feminists who are being the most malicious.
The problem is that modern-day minority rights activists like Barrett are completely unnecessary. They are too successful and independent, making them difficult to boss around and manipulate. They really did battle against patriarchal prejudices, sexism, and other forms of unfair competition well-known to both women and men the world over. But they won, and it is only losers who are trending with the left these days.
If Barrett was gender fluid with incomprehensible sexual preferences, an alcohol problem and an incurable drug addiction, she (it) would definitely have won over the sympathy of the Democrats. The whole battle for minority rights is really just intended to reinforce the gap between winners and losers, between successful people and those on the fringes of society.
Unfortunately, the relentlessly impoverished masses in America are all too easily sucked in by this propaganda, especially as it’s everywhere they look. Where Barrett is concerned, a lot of people are jumping on the cyberbullying bandwagon because it is virtually impossible to repeat her achievements and be as successful as she is in modern-day America.
The Republicans have a majority in the Senate, and it is more than likely that Amy Coney Barrett will win again by becoming a justice on the Supreme Court. However, the nationwide battle sparked by the post has resulted in Americans destroying with their own hands what they have spent centuries building: the “American dream”, equal rights for women, the cult of personal success, meritocracy. It suddenly turns out – as hinted at already by the MeToo movement – that being successful in today’s America can be dangerous. It can provoke such anger among the populace that all one’s success are shot down in flames.
The American dream is being destroyed on a scale typical of the country and before the eyes of the world. At the same time, the much-vaunted “soft power” that America’s credibility has depended on for so long is also dwindling away to nothing.