This isn’t too disturbing. Nope. Not at all. Everything is just fine here, folks.
Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer has a new book out in which he shares some of his many philosophical observations about law and the court. In it, as the latest issue of Time reveals, he concludes that there’s clearly nothing wrong with American courts – including SCOTUS – considering the laws and judicial rulings of other nations. Stop laughing and pointing. I’m serious.
Should the Supreme Court care that other countries have abolished the death penalty?
That looming question animates Justice Stephen Breyer’s “The Court and the World,” a brisk but academic book that argues that it is relevant for the nation’s top judges to consider what other countries’ legal systems have decided when faced with difficult issues.
“If someone with a job roughly like my own, facing a legal problem roughly like the one confronting me, interpreting a document that resembles the one I look to, has written a legal opinion about a similar matter, why not read what that judge has said?” writes Breyer, who was appointed by President Clinton in 1994. “I might learn from it, whether or not I end up agreeing with it.”