Power can be hoarded by the mighty or stolen from the innocent. Power provides the ability to choose... but has a proclivity for corruption. The use of power is not to be taken lightly, for it is never without consequence.
-- Emily Thorne (Revenge)
Though protagonist Emily Thorne from ABC's hit drama Revenge is just a fictional character, those words resonated with me when I first heard them.
There are those with immense power that choose to abuse or misuse that power in order to advance their own ideology, careers or agendas -- all while negating the oaths they swore to uphold. In the end, justice is the first casualty, and the innocent suffer.
Roy Moore, Alabama's Supreme Court Chief Justice, is that person who violated his sacred oaths. Justice Moore issued unethical statements on gay marriage -- despite it concerning a case that is still ongoing, and one that could come to him. In a letter penned to the governor of Alabama, Justice Moore said:
As Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, I will continue to recognize the Alabama Constitution and the will of the people overwhelmingly expressed in the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment.
Moore continued with:
I ask you to continue to uphold and support the Alabama Constitution with respect to marriage, both for the welfare of this state and for our posterity... Be advised that I stand with you to stop judicial tyranny and any unlawful opinions issued without constitutional authority.
Are these the words of a state's highest judge, or of an unprofessional, backwards and unethical right-wing fanatic?
Justice Moore is no stranger to controversy. He was removed from his post as Chief Justice in 2003 for disobeying a federal ruling that he remove a 10 Commandments monument that he had ordered installed in the judicial building.
Justice Moore also issued a very controversial opinion in the case of D.H. vs. H.H. where he voted for an abusive father to be given full custody of his children, rather than their lesbian mother.
He was elected to the highest judicial position in his state, and yet, he treats it like a church pulpit without regard to something called separation of church and state, or the Establishment Clause of the Constitution. You, Mr. Moore, are wrong when you claim that Alabama's constitution is superior to federal law. Any first-year political science or pre-law student would be able to tell you that.
A person like Justice Moore is a threat to the very fabric of American society. This extremism should never be accepted or tolerated. When one holds the position of Chief Justice of a U.S. State, one would hope that the elected official would put what is legal, constitutional and right above their misguided, extremist or religious beliefs.
Marriage equality is coming to Alabama, Judge Moore. Not you, nor your unethical behavior, nor your piousness will prevent equality and love from prevailing.
Since the Chief Justice doesn't seem very enlightened on matters concerning the law, and his antiquated beliefs are clouding his judgment, I would be more than happy to educate him on the legality of his position, and several other laws he might not be well-versed in.
Since making time for such a splendid learning session would probably interrupt his Duck Dynasty marathon, Bible speed-reading session or bedtime tales from Fox News, I recommend the Chief Justice run to his local Barnes&Noble store and pick up a paperback copy of Constitutional Law for Dummies. Trust me Judge Moore, it will be the best $20 you spend this year.