Week of 3/4-9/2024: Lawyers on Dreadful SCOTUS; Rabbis about Bushnell & Gaza

March 4, 2024: The Sickness and Treachery of Today’s Supreme Court, continued
SCOTUS’s decision to hear Trump’s plea for immunity from criminal prosecution will go down in infamy. This morally compromised Court has also invited dark money into our political system; vetoed gun controls; refused to critique gerrymandering; and rejected a 50-year precedent in order to tell women what they can and cannot do with their bodies. Certain justices are also receiving huge gifts from far-right billionaires and not reporting these gifts, nor recusing themselves when those same billionaires have cases under review in the court. Fascism is also on full display with the leading Republican candidate for presidency. It’s time for change!

Judge Michael Luttig and Andrew Weissmann join Nicolle Wallace on Deadline White House on the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the former White House tenant’s claim to presidential immunity on April 22. MSNBC

March 5, 2024: Dred Scott & SCOTUS Spreading Dread Across the Land
There is unfortunate precedent of a Supreme Court yielding to powerful forces of evil. It happened in 1857 with the Dred Scott Decision. Notice the eery similarities: Dred Scott and dread SCOTUS. Last week’s decision to hear the immunity case was dreadful. It spread dread across the land. Dred Scott, of course, was a freed slave. The Supreme Court decision, denying that slaves had rights as citizens or as human beings, no doubt led to the terrible Civil War that gripped our nation and resulted in the loss of 700,000 lives. And even though the war resulted in the Emancipation Proclamation, it did not prevent years of lynchings, KKK activity, and Jim Crow laws. Bless those who fight against oppression and injustice, like Navalny, Stang, Douglas, Truth and Tubman.

March 6, 2024: A Lawyer Responding to Yesterday’s DM on SCOTUS & Dread
Kenneth Larry Matheny, a retired lawyer, responded to yesterday’s DM telling us that “historically the court has been reactionary,” and “Dred Scott is the worst decision ever.” He also deplores the SCOTUS decisions that upheld concentration camps for Japanese citizens and undermined labor unions. And “then we have Citizens United, which struck a perhaps fatal blow to democracy.” He says: As I watch the judge in Florida and SCOTUS deliberately delaying the Trump trials, I have to say that I no longer have any respect for the federal courts. This sad state of affairs calls for deep reflection by all of us.

“SCOTUS for Sale” Collage: Photo of the U.S. Supreme Court on Wikimedia Commons; For Sale sign photo by Lidia Nikole on Unsplash

March 7, 2024: Rabbis Speaking Out on the Evil in Gaza & One Man’s Sacrifice
One rabbi recently wrote a powerful and thoughtful piece about the sacrifice of Aaron Bushnell, an airman in the U.S. Air Force, who lit himself on fire in front of the Israeli embassy in Washington DC while repeatedly shouting “Free Palestine” before falling unconscious. Bushnell posted this note on his Facebook page before his final act: Many of us like to ask ourselves, ‘What would I do if I was alive during slavery? Or the Jim Crow South? Or apartheid? What would I do if my country was committing genocide?’  The answer is, you’re doing it. Right now.’ Rabbi Arthur Waskow says: What I learn from Aaron is not to do the act he did but to act in the spirit of his action: I will increase and strengthen my own work to end this bloodshed of utter destruction in which my own nation has become a major part.*

March 8, 2024: More from Rabbi Waskow & Aaron Bushnell on Resistance
About the self-immolation of Aaron Bushnell in protest of the ongoing war in Gaza, Rabbi Waskow says: I found myself deeply moved by Aaron Bushnell’s self-immolation — the second in the U.S. that was occasioned by the ongoing war/ devastation in Gaza. My emotions were stirred in contradictory directions, as yours may have been when you heard the news. He adds: When the children of Isaac and the children of Ishmael are at peace, so am I. When they are shedding each other’s blood, I feel torn. It is imperative to pressure the Biden administration to push harder for a ceasefire and to put distance between America and the Netanyahu government. The recent visit of a Netanyahu political rival with the vice president in Washington DC may have been a response to public pressure.

“American rabbis call for immediate ceasefire in Israel’s war on Gaza.” TRT World

March 9, 2024: Hostility to Democracy in the Current Judiciary
We are reflecting on comments made by lawyer Kenneth Metheny. He warns that another court case coming this year from SCOTUS may well “greatly weaken federal agencies that protect our environment, consumers, and workers.” He continues: Much of our current federal judiciary is hostile to democracy. That’s not an opinion. It’s a fact. It’s why they gutted the Voting Rights Act. SCOTUS has also created a path to secret slush funds for dark money with their Citizens United debacle, and in the process elevated billionaires like the Koch brothers and others to extraordinary influence on our political and judicial decision-making. Then we also have the fascist influence of Opus Dei. But Matheney assures us that “all is not lost.” We will explore this in upcoming DM’s.  

*Rabbi Arthur Waskow, “Self-Immolator Protests Gaza Bloodshed,” The Shalom Center

Banner image: “Pray for Gaza.” duncan cumming on Flickr.

Recommended Reading

Sins of the Spirit, Blessings of the Flesh: Transforming Evil in Soul and Society

Visionary theologian and best-selling author Matthew Fox offers a new theology of evil that fundamentally changes the traditional perception of good and evil and points the way to a more enlightened treatment of ourselves, one another, and all of nature. In comparing the Eastern tradition of the 7 chakras to the Western tradition of the 7 capital sins, Fox allows us to think creatively about our capacity for personal and institutional evil and what we can do about them. 
“A scholarly masterpiece embodying a better vision and depth of perception far beyond the grasp of any one single science.  A breath-taking analysis.” — Diarmuid O’Murchu, author of Quantum Theology: Spiritual Implications of the New Physics

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2 thoughts on “Week of 3/4-9/2024: Lawyers on Dreadful SCOTUS; Rabbis about Bushnell & Gaza”

  1. Avatar

    Another book recommendation for members who are interested in multidimensional-multiverse spirituality: “Meet the Hybrids: The Lives and Missions of ET Ambassadors on Earth”
    (2015), by Miguel Mendonca and Barbara Lamb.

    From the back cover: “Meet the Hybrids” explores the lived experience of eight individuals who understand that they are part human and part-extraterrestrial. Guided by their star families and other entities, they are dedicated to personal missions which contribute to a larger process involving the flourishing of human consciousness, and the protection and evolution of life on Earth at this critical time.
    Based on over 100 hours of interviews and conversations, this book gives each of the hybrids their own voice. They share their personal journeys of discovery, their abilities, and the joys and challenges of living a dual existence. They invite the reader to radically expand their understanding of reality itself, and pursue their own evolution.”

    Review: “Meet the Hybrids” is a cutting edge dialogue which offers an in-depth perspective from individuals who connect to a hybrid state of being. As a therapist and researcher this information is an extremely valuable resource. For those who identify as hybrids it will be both
    validating and healing — confirming that they are not alone. A landmark book.”
    — Mary Rodwell, author of “The New Human: Awakening to our Cosmic Heritage” (previously recommended).

  2. Avatar
    Martina Nicholson MD

    Dear Fr. Matthew and friends,
    I live in Santa Cruz, and a friend here is putting up a show of works by Corita Kent, who was an IHM nun in Los Angeles, in the 60s, who was a wonderful gifted artist, especially using collage and silk screen. The show is going to be at Cowell college, opening on April 7. It is called “A sign of hope.” and will be at the Eloise Pickard Smith Gallery until June 1. Her messages are so uplifting and heartening!
    Fr. Matt, I would love it if you can come to the opening; the prints are very inspiring!

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