A question followed by an opportunity for the next president to be a “Profile in Courage.”
First, the question: In the history of the Supreme Court, why have all of the justices been lawyers? With the complete domination of the court by this one, special interest, occupational group, surely the Constitution must restrict membership to lawyers only.
Despite popular belief, the Constitution does not specify any qualifications for Supreme Court justices, and no special requirements exist concerning age, education, profession, experience or citizenship. Justices do not need to have particular legal experience, nor do they need to be lawyers.
The recent decision by the court to return the “citizenship question” on the 2020 Census to lower courts is proof that this lawyer-only court is political. The court’s timing is perfect in that due to this legal maneuvering, the question will not be on the 2020 Census.
From 1890 to 1950 the citizenship question was on the census forms. From 1970 to 2000 only the long form had the question; the short form did not. In 2010 only the short form was used. The citizenship question has been used (or not used) many times, so to use it again for any census is nothing new.
A 10th-grade government student could tell you this, so why do we need nine over-educated, legal eagles on the court to blunder on this question and why are only lawyers are allowed to have opinions with respect to the interpretation of the Constitution?
Now, how can the next president earn a seat at the Profiles in Courage table? Simple, as a candidate he or she must promise the American people that if an opening occurs on the Supreme Court during their presidency, they will nominate a non-lawyer to fill the vacancy.
A good source of qualified candidates would be veterans. They all swore an oath to protect and defend the Constitution — with their lives, if necessary. If they are willing to give their lives for the Constitution, surely that have earned the right to interpret it. It is well past time to break the elitist, Harvard/Yale law schools' stranglehold on the court by appointing someone with common sense.
Jim Simpson, Fort Walton Beach