Court Complacency

Colorado baker and cake decorator Jack Phillips stands in front of the US congress in a composite image meant to show the peril of legislators not doing their job to protect rights.
The Colorado GOP works to protect cake decorator Jack Phillips's rights. We should expect the vigorous action from our national representatives as well.
“The courts are supposed to be the bulwarks; they are to be stalwart authorities on the American founding documents, the defensive pillars from the whims of the mob, and they are to protect our Constitution from the infringements of the legislative and executive branches,” Allen Thomas notes in his most recent Op-Ed, "Court Complacency." Allen continues that even though there may be cause for celebration in the Supreme Court’s OSHA vaccine mandate ruling, there is also cause for concern.

In Federalist Paper #78, Publius makes the argument that the judiciary branch is the least dangerous of the three branches of the government because it “has no influence over either the sword or the purse.” Hamilton furthers the innocence of the judiciary branch in stating that the judiciary relies on the executive branch to enforce its rulings because it is merely for judgment and has no real powers over making or enforcing laws. The courts are supposed to be the bulwarks; they are to be stalwart authorities on the American founding documents, the defensive pillars from the whims of the mob, and they are to protect our Constitution from the infringements of the legislative and executive branches. While the judiciary branch may be the least dangerous, it may also be the branch that we must keep a fervent eye over and ensure it follows its deeply important duties. It is a defender and protector-therefore we mustn’t forget that it sees many attacks and battles and is at constant war. Today the branch is being tested and called to battle ever too often. We must remember the more a defensive bulwark is called into action, the more likely it is to fail.

There is just cause for Conservatives and defenders of the Constitution to be optimistic with a key Supreme Court decision ruling against the vaccine mandate. The Biden administration suffered a setback on their key COVID vaccination mandate when the court ruled that OSHA cannot regulate broad public health policy. But it was merely a small victory. However narrow this ruling was (it did not really roll back the powers of the bureaucratic agency), the key story that was downplayed was Biden v. Missouri, when the court decided that Health and Human Services does have the power to enforce a vaccine mandate for healthcare workers at facilities that accept Medicare and Medicaid funding (estimated at 71% and 85% respectively). Setting aside the issues of Medicare and Medicaid, that is an overwhelming amount of force within a very powerful industry. Although there is cause to be optimistic, to say we should take our eye off the branch and move on as though conservatives have won, is wrong.

Republican legislators took to Fox News and the social media outlets to celebrate the ruling, calling it a win for Liberty and Freedom. While I am thankful for the first ruling, I am disappointed that we have not seen calls from Republicans in Congress to restrict the bureaucrats and agencies in Washington. There was no immediate discussion about legislation to limit the power given to HHS until Representative Dan Crenshaw finally proposed legislation five days after the ruling. It is disheartening that the bill had only one additional republican sponsor. We have thwarted this attack, but attacks will happen again. War has been waged and we have been stuck playing defense. Without calls or action against the immoral tyranny that has been used against the citizens of this country, these rulings are little cause for celebration; they are mere moments of respite to catch our breath before the next assault.

We need look no further than our own backyard for evidence of this: Jack Phillips owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop. He has endured not one, but two wins since 2012 (one in front of the Supreme Court and one when they dropped the suit). But instead of this win ending his legal woes, he has not only been sued again but this time he lost (although he is currently appealing that decision). This suit was filed in the state court to get around the Supreme Court’s ruling. The bulwark has failed Jack Phillips. But to credit the Colorado GOP, they have been fighting an uphill battle against the corrupt powers of the Civil Rights Commission, trying to defund the commission and remove it entirely. That is what our country needs at the moment, legislatures who look at the uphill battle and know that just because the judicial branch stands in defense, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be playing offense.

Trump was elected in 2016 because the public was tired of the Washington Political Elite, tired of the PBI’s looking down from their pedestal to dictate how hardworking Americans should live their lives.  And while a lot was accomplished in those four years, we see now how quickly all that progress can be reversed.  We are lucky that we now have the bulwark Trump built in the Supreme Court, but it is not enough and our Constitution is vulnerable. So take this breath, and continue the fight for freedom. Use the primaries to show our representatives that we require more from them. We need fortitude and the courage to do what is right in order to keep our Republic. I am tired of playing defense, the progressives have shown the public their true colors and we should not accept these attacks against our moral rights.



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