Eric Brown: Supreme Court failures complicate our lives

I don’t quite agree with this Supreme Court. I think the decisions in this term are bad for the America we live in today and bad for the future of our country.

But I agree with the Court on some things. I agree that if we want to protect rights in this country, eliminate violence and save humanity from the devastating effects of natural disasters like forest fires, hurricanes, floods, landslides and violent storms, we must to act. This action is not supposed to come from our courts. But it is possible.

The Court is correct when it says that if we want to improve our lives, it is up to Congress and our legislatures to pass laws to make those improvements. I think gun violence is a scourge that can be stopped. I think sensible gun laws are one way to do that. I also think that if you want to have a gun in your home to protect yourself and your family, you should be able to have one. In Connecticut, our legislature acted to pass gun legislation to curb gun violence. I know that based on statistics, Connecticut is the sixth safest state in terms of gun violence per capita. Good numbers. So say what you want, but our legislature has acted to protect its citizens and their rights.

The Court is also correct when it says that there is no right to bodily autonomy specifically enumerated in the Constitution, unlike the rights to bear arms or to freely express one’s religion. I disagree for a number of reasons with the Court’s decision in Dobbs, primarily because I believe women have a fundamental right to decide what to do with their bodies. For many like me, there is not even a question.

But if we are to protect women’s right to bodily autonomy, it is up to our legislative bodies to act. In Connecticut, our legislature officially passed a law protecting a woman’s right to make decisions about her own body. I wish there was a constitutional provision explicitly saying the same thing. But if we want one, we can get one by getting our Congress to act. This is the main role of Congress after all. Not that of the Court. Not the president’s.

Our nation has evolved throughout its history over the past 250 years. Like the nation, I believe our interpretation of our landmark document, the Constitution, must also evolve to reflect the life we ​​live today, not the life most white men lived when they wore pointed hats and rode horses.

Climate disasters are real. Gun violence takes the lives of innocent men, women and children in this country every day. And women are certainly more than vessels for the propagation of humanity. The Court’s decisions from the last term seem to ignore the realities of everyday American life. And the majority of decision-makers happily hide behind the process while it remains in their power to improve the lives of Americans.

Of course, the legislature has direct authority to pass laws that improve lives. But when it fails, as it surely has for much of this decade, our other branches of government have a moral obligation to step in and steer the ship. This Court has failed to do so this term and as a result, the lives of millions of Americans have become so much more difficult.

Eric Brown, who writes a weekly column, is an attorney with offices in Connecticut. He can be reached at 888-579-4222 or online at thelaborlawyer.com.

Julio V. Miller