The most recent Supreme Court term, which came to a close on Thursday, was stunning in the truest sense of the word.
Since the term began in October, the court handed down a series of rulings that functionally drag the United States back to a bygone era where old, white, rapacious Christian men controlled everything — from Americans' wombs to their water supply.
This is not the time for paralysis. We know this court has more cruelty in store. This is a time for mobilization, righteous rule-breaking and defiance.
If you were to take a grayscale photo of America today, it’d be almost indistinguishable from the violent, racist, misogynist country America was 100 years ago, thanks in large part to conservatives on the Supreme Court.
Below is a list of some of their most disastrous rulings from this latest term. It’s galling stuff. But understand: This is not the time for paralysis. We know this court has more cruelty in store. This is a time for mobilization, righteous rule-breaking and defiance on individual, state and federal levels.
The majority of Americans don't trust this court — and for good reason. They will continue to be steamrolled by conservative justices without fervent pushback. And that means we need to be as audacious in asserting and defending our civil and human rights as six right-wing justices have been in taking them away.
Let’s assess the damage.
Conservatives on the court effectively took a wrecking ball to the wall separating church and state. They ruled in favor of a former public high school football coach who held post-game prayers where some players felt compelled to participate against their wishes, and they ruled that barring people from using state tuition assistance funds on religious schools violated religious freedoms outlined in the Constitution.
The right-wing court also obliterated federal abortion rights when it upheld Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban and voted to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision of 1973, which guaranteed a constitutional right to abortion. Christian extremists have sought these measures for decades.
The court allowed multiple GOP-led states to use voting maps in this year’s elections that have been shown to be functionally racist. Maps drawn by Republicans in Alabama and Louisiana methodically suppress Black voter power while strengthening power in mostly white enclaves, but conservative justices argued they should be allowed to stand regardless.
As conservative justices prepared to accept heightened security for their own families, they made the rest of America’s families less safe by striking down a New York law requiring that people show a special need to carry concealed guns in public. The ruling will increase the number of secretly strapped New Yorkers, and it has horrifying implications for other American cities, as well.
Attacking functional government
Right-wing justices curbed the federal government’s ability to do … well … anything, really. They overruled the Biden administration’s public health requirement that large employers institute mandatory Covid vaccines or a mandatory testing regimen during the height of the pandemic. They overruled emissions standards instituted by the Environmental Protection Agency — a ruling which I’ve explained has disastrous implications for other government agencies. And they further perverted the criminal justice system by ruling that law enforcement officers can't be sued for failing to provide criminal suspects with a Miranda warning before questioning them.
The court now takes a three-month recess before getting back to demolishing democracy and rolling back our rights.