'The Behavior at Issue Here'
Reason editor and columnist Jacob Sullum offers some insight on Sam Alito, Supreme Court Justice nominee in "Sam Alito saves Christmas":
Alito deserves credit not so much for facing down the secular humanists as for fearlessly wading into the murky constitutional waters of government-sponsored religious displays. Confronted by questions like how many cartoon characters it takes to balance a baby Jesus, a lesser jurist would have thrown up his hands.
But not Judge Sam Alito. In 1999, as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit, Alito was asked to decide whether Jersey City's display of a creche, a menorah, and a Christmas tree outside city hall, which a different 3rd Circuit panel had declared an unconstitutional endorsement of religion, could be saved by adding Kwanzaa ornaments on the tree, a red sled, and plastic Santa Claus and Frosty the Snowman statues. Writing for the majority, he concluded that the new, busier exhibit was "indistinguishable in any constitutionally significant respect" from displays the Supreme Court had upheld.
Read the whole thing.
Sullum includes a look at the dissent, which wisely, if ironically, concludes that "the behavior at issue here is incapable of being guided."
CP @ GMC.