It is not often that you hear something that just seems so bizarre considering the person who is saying it, that it kind-of boggles your mind. Such is the case for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. We don’t often hear from Justice Thomas. He hasn’t asked a question in court since February 2006. His public appearances are rare. But a few nights ago he gave a talk and answered questions to the winners of a high school essay contest.
People (Mother Jones, Blue Girl, Political Carnival) are already analyzing the things he said, but those of you who frequent this blog know that I prefer to let people’s words speak for themselves.
The event was sponsored by the Bill of Rights Institute, but here’s what Thomas had to say about those rights:
Today there is much focus on our rights. Indeed, I think there is a proliferation of rights. I am often surprised by the virtual nobility that seems to be accorded those with grievances. Shouldn’t there at least be equal time for our Bill of Obligations and our Bill of Responsibilities?
Thomas called working at the Supreme Court an “ordeal”. “That’s one thing about this job. You get a little tired.”
Later on, he came back to the challenges of his job:
This job is easy for people who’ve never done it. What I have found in this job is they know more about it than I do, especially if they have the title ‘law professor’.
As for what gives him pleasure:
I have to admit that I’m one of those people that still thinks the dishwasher is a miracle. What a device! And I have to admit that because I think that way, I like to load it. I like to look in and see how the dishes were magically cleaned.
I have on many occasions or a number of occasions when things were becoming particularly routine gone down to my basement to watch ‘Saving Private Ryan’. I can’t tell you why that particular movie, except we have it and it’s about something important in our lives — World War II.
Or how can you not reminisce about a childhood where you began each day with the Pledge of Allegiance as little kids lined up in the schoolyard and then marched in two by two with a flag and a crucifix in each classroom?
From the NY Times.
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