The New Untouchables Is SCOTUS

The New Untouchables Is SCOTUS May 25, 2024

U.S. Supreme Court-2024

SCOTUS–the Supreme Court of the United States–is The New Untouchables. That is, we Americans are now realizing that, due to our brand of democracy as set forth in our Constitution, our Supreme Court justices always have been “the untouchables,” and we just never knew it. How so? Their integrity never needed to be challenged until now. And there is no code of conduct by which SCOTUS justices can be measured.

There is no branch of the U.S. government that conducts oversight of SCOTUS. The Constitution only says justices shall conduct “good behavior.” The only way one of them can be impeached and removed from office is for the Congress take the initiative in doing so. It is the same two-step process as for the president: a majority of the House must “impeach,” and a 2/3 supermajority of the Senate (thus at least 67 votes) must “convict.” As with the president, no Supreme Court justice has ever been removed from office.

I guess this serious scrutinizing of the integrity of our Supreme Court justices started way back in 1991 when, during Congressional hearings, attorney Anita Hill accused Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas of sexually harassing her, which he denied. More recently, present Justice Thomas has been accused of receiving many gifts of substantial monetary value which is against Court practice. And his wife Virginia (“Ginni”) has for years been supporting Donald Trump as president with conduct that may be illegal.

Furthermore, present Justice Samuel Alito is blaming his wife for hoisting symbols outside their house which anything but non-partial politically, as one expects from a judge, if not his wife. In response to her neighbor’s anti-Trump sign in her front yard, Ms. Alito hung an upside down U.S. flag, which has been a symbol of the Trump MAGA crowd meaning that the 2020 presidential election was stolen, as Trump still constantly claims even though there has been no evidence of it. She called it “an international symbol of distress.” It turns out that Ms. Alito is not only a Trump supporter but an advocate of “Christian nationalism.” Last summer, she hung a flag outside their vacation home that said “Appeal to Heaven.” That is not very informative, IMO, but it is a sign that Christian nationalists here in the U.S. are known for displaying as a symbol of this ideology, which I as a Christian reject.

Justices are expected to at least appear politically impartial in public. Many Americans therefore have been calling for Justice Alito to recuse himself at least from deciding on the delayed case in which former President Donald Trump has requested presidential immunity. This would affect especially the most important of the four indictments against him–the federal case in Washington, DC, brought by special prosecutor Jack Smith, concerning the alleged riot against the Capitol on Jan 6, 2021.

“The Untouchables” was a 1987, Hollywood, crime film that depicted the real life story of the Christian-educated Eliot Ness. He was an agent of the Bureau of Investigation (former FBI) of the U.S. Department of Justice. He was selected to fight Prohibition in Chicago and get mobster Al Capone convicted, which did happen. Ness’ team of investigators became known as “The Untouchables.” In the movie, Kevin Costner played Eliot Ness. The film was nominated for four Academy Awards, and Sean Connery won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

The screenplay for this blockbuster film that grossed $100 million was based a book entitled The Untouchables that was written by Oscar Fraley (1914-1994). Oscar Fraley was a sports reporter who worked for United Press International. His sports column used to appear in 450 newspapers. And he wrote 31 books, including Hoffa, The Real Story.

Oscar Fraley was a friend of mine. One time I had lunch with him at Miami Country Club during the PGA Tour’s tournament there. (I think that tournament was sponsored by American Airlines.) Oscar then told me that he wrote The Untouchables in only two weeks. (That is absolutely depressing! It usually takes me two years to write a book.) Oscar said “the muse” was flowing so much that he hardly ever went to bed. I also remember that during that conversation, Oscar and I discussed Jesus of Nazareth.

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