I have been an avid Kansas City Royals fan since boyhood. It has not always been easy, as the Royals have made the playoffs only twice since 1985. This year is sadly typical by Royals standards. They currently have the third-worst record in all of Major League Baseball (MLB). My love for the organization continues nonetheless.
Why the loyalty you may ask? As a young boy, one of my brothers and I followed Kansas City baseball very closely together. We knew every player, every statistic and all the quirks of what was then a relatively new and surprisingly competitive franchise. I am bright enough to realize that the connection to my brother, who passed away at age 22, and the fact my father and I would go to Fenway Park in Boston to see the Red Sox host my beloved Royals, are both essential factors in my sentimental attachment to the blue uniforms with a mostly dismal track record.
In 1976 I was eleven years old and the Kansas City Royals made the MLB playoffs for the first time in franchise history. They had a best of five series against the hated New York Yankees for the American League Championship. In the bottom of the ninth inning of the fifth and final game, the rude, crude home crowd at Yankee Stadium caused a game delay by showering the field with bottles, trash and debris. The game could have been forfeited, but instead, the crowd was merely given a verbal rebuke over the PA system. Immediately after the delay, Yankee Chris Chambliss hit a walk-off home run against a significantly cooled-off KC pitcher, beating the Royals and taking the Yanks to The World Series.
The following year, in 1977, the Royals had the best record in Major League Baseball and hoped to exact their revenge on the Yankees at playoff time. The American League Championship again went to five games. The Royals took a 3-2 lead into the ninth inning and were three outs away from their first World Series. My twelve-year-old self was elated. Elated that is until fate intervened and the unthinkable happened. The Royals again gave away their World Series tickets with a fifth game, final inning blow-up. Royals shortstop Fred Patek sat on the Royals bench motionless in disbelief for more than 20 minutes. I sat on the edge of my bed in similar shock.
It may have just been a game, but the memory that was seared into my young mind still evokes the bitter taste of shock and defeat. When stunned in such a manner, the human mind naturally runs through scenario after scenario wondering what could have been different. The immediate reaction is sometimes illogical and irrational, yet the human mind, grasping for a different outcome, runs through every variable.
Such is currently the case with the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobb’s v. Jackson, which essentially nullifies Roe v. Wade and returns decisions on the legality and circumstances of abortion to each of the individual 50 states. When thinking rationally, one realizes this decision does not take away anyone’s rights. On the contrary, it puts every voter in every state in the position to have a direct say on the issue. You can vote for state representatives that reflect your belief on the topic, who in turn can implement that belief in your state. If you follow the rule of law and participate in the process, you can have a direct impact on the resulting public policy.
Because however, many abortion advocates are not reacting rationally, there is a belief among some in the public that this decision has rendered abortion illegal in the U.S. It has not. More importantly, however, the irrational response to the Supreme Court has gone much further. Many on the left don’t like the outcome, so rather than follow the rule of law, they want to toss out the rules, change the law and jam through their will. Process be damned. The ends apparently justify the means.
Democrats have called for impeaching the six Supreme Court Justices who voted in favor of overturning Roe v. Wade. There is no evidence, not even an accusation, of any of the Justices doing anything illegal or inappropriate. The motivation for the impeachment is simply that the left doesn’t like an outcome. The answer? Toss out the duly selected and confirmed justices and replace them with people who “think like we do.” Ironically the same people who are claiming the SCOTUS Dobbs decision takes away women’s rights want to implement a dictatorial response.
There are other equally bad ideas being floated around as well. In the state of Georgia, seven district attorneys have announced that they will not prosecute abortion-related cases, regardless. One District Attorney, Sharon Boston, said the following, “I reject the notion that we, as elected prosecutors, should blindly enforce or ‘rubber-stamp’ laws without introspection and question regarding the greater good of the community.” Ms. Boston apparently doesn’t understand the three branches of government and their respective roles. Perhaps she simply doesn’t care, but the legislative branch is who decides what the laws will be. As part of the judicial branch, Boston’s job is to enforce those laws, not to determine her personal preference.
The Georgia Attorney General calls this a dereliction of duty and he is correct. A prosecutor who thinks it is her role to determine which laws are deserving of enforcement is, unlike the Supreme Court Justices in the question above, ripe for impeachment from her position.
Perhaps the most dangerous of all the reactive suggestions have come from no less than the President of the United States himself. President Joe Biden, speaking from Europe before traveling home said he now favors eliminating the filibuster in the United States Senate so that Congress can pass a federal pro-abortion law. When Biden, who served in the United States Senate from 1973 to 2009, was first elected President he opposed getting rid of the filibuster. As recently as about a year ago, White House spokesperson Kate Bedingfield said of Biden, “His preference is not to end the filibuster. He wants to work with Republicans, to work with independents. He believes that we are stronger when we build a broad coalition of support.”
No one should be surprised that Biden changed his mind about the filibuster as a result of the abortion issue and the Supreme Court. Early in his Senate career Biden opposed Roe v. Wade and fancied himself Pro-Life. When it became politically expedient, however, he flipped and is now among the most pro-abortion Democrats in DC. If he would flip on the issue of whether a baby deserves protection in the womb, of course, he would roll over on the filibuster.
The bottom line is this. There are existing rules and laws in the United States under which pro-abortion forces can attempt to push their agenda. Abortion advocates are well aware they don’t have the support or the numbers to do it successfully under existing laws and rules. What is their answer? Simply change the rules. Whatever it takes to achieve their agenda. Never mind that making the rules up as one goes along ensures Banana Republic-type stability. Never mind it instantly delegitimizes the government body and has all the staying power of a sand castle at low tide.
Never once after my Kansas City Royals lost in the ninth and final inning of the last game in the 1977 American League Championship Series did it occur to me to go back and get MLB to retroactively change the rules so that in a deciding game, the team with the most runs after eight innings, rather than nine, will be declared the winner. If we had simply changed the rules, even after the game, KC could have been declared 1977 American League Champions. Whatever it took.
It’s an absurd notion of course. You can’t go back after the fact and change the rules just because you don’t like the New York Yankees. No one would accept the Royals as legitimate Champions after they went through a legitimate deciding playoff game and lost, no matter what foolishness some rules committee might declare afterward.
Likewise, this overwhelming desire on the part of the left to change the rules after the fact, whether by punishing sitting justices they disagree with or by suspending the long-standing rules of the U.S. Senate to achieve their goals, is equally absurd. No one should seriously entertain these short-sighted fixes as actual policy. The Royals didn’t win in 1977. SCOTUS has ruled in 2022. Both are legitimate and final.
- Tim Constantine is a columnist with the Washington Times.
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