by Steven Ertelt
January 25, 2008
Starkville, MS (LifeNews.com) — Justice Antonin Scalia told students at Mississippi State University on Thursday that the nation’s high court shouldn’t be determining the legality of key moral issues like abortion. He said the high court is no more suited to determine if abortion should be legal than the average voter.
Scalia is a long-time proponent of overturning Roe v. Wade and letting states have the ability to determine their own abortion laws.
What I am questioning is the propriety, indeed, the sanity of letting value-laden decisions such as these be made for the entire society, Scalia told the students in a speech.
Even if there were scientific right answers, there would be no reason to believe that law-trained professionals could discern those answers better than say medical doctors or engineers or ethicists or Mr. Joe Six Pack," Scalia added, according to an Associated Press report.
Our judges lack of special qualifications to deal with such questions is disguised by the fact that they provided their answers in classic legal opinion form. It is blindingly clear that judges have no greater capacity than the rest of us to determine what is moral, Scalia said.
Scalia said, as recently as October, that no right to abortion exists in the Constitution.
In a speech at Villanova Law School’s Second Annual John F. Scarpa Conference on Law, Politics & Culture, he reconfirmed that view.
He said that notion is not guided by his Catholic views but by his understanding of the Constitution and his perspective as a "strict originalist" and "legal positivist."
"Not everything you may care about is in the Constitution," he told the audience, according to a report in The Bulletin newspaper. "It is a legal document that had compromises in it. What it says it says; what it doesn’t say it doesn’t say."
"I don’t agree we are in an era of narrow constitutional interpretation. There are still sweeping decisions out there," Scalia added.
"Roe v. Wade is one. There is nothing in the Constitution about the right to abortion," the associate justice explained.
Pro-life advocates hope that another justice with the same views as Scalia can be added to the court to join with Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito to overturn Roe.