Justice Anthony Kennedy likens US Supreme Court to Hitler's judiciary on same-sex marriage decision
In quite a shocking remark, an Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court has compared the judiciary in today's America to that of Nazi Germany during the time of Adolf Hitler based on how it decided on the same-sex marriage question.
Justice Anthony Kennedy is best remembered for casting the "swing vote" in the US Supreme Court's 5-4 decision on June 26 this year that legalised "same-sex marriage" throughout the United States.
In a recent town hall meeting, Kennedy was asked about Kentucky county Clerk Kim Davis, who was jailed for nearly a week by a US District Judge for her refusal to heed the judge's order to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples on the ground that such action would violate her faith, WND reported.
As rephrased by Kennedy himself, the question was: "What is the duty of a public official if he or she cannot in good conscience, and consistent with their own personal and religious beliefs, enforce a law they think is morally corrupt?"
Kennedy replied: "How many judges do you think resigned in the Third Reich? Three."
The Third Reich was the period of history in Germany from 1933 to 1945 when the country was under a dictatorship under the control of Hitler and the Nazi Party.
Kennedy continued: "Great respect, it seems to me, has to be given to people who resign rather than do something they think is morally wrong, in order to make a point.
"However, the rule of law is that, as a public official and performing your legal duties, you are bound to enforce the law.
"It's difficult sometimes to see whether or not what you're doing is transgressing your own personal philosophies – this requires considerable introspection. It's a fair question that officials can and should ask themselves.
"But certainly in an offhand comment, it would be difficult for me to say that people are free to ignore a decision of the Supreme Court."
US Senator Ted Cruz quickly pounced on Kennedy's remark, posting his comment on his Facebook page together with the video of Kennedy answering the question.
Cruz said, "When a Supreme Court justice compares his own lawless rulings to the draconian oppression of the Nazis – and says that Christians should resign from public office if they will not surrender to his imperious decrees – that really says it all. Those are his words, not mine. Justice Kennedy is holding up the Nazis as exemplars for the current Supreme Court."
Liberty Counsel, the national religious-rights law firm representing Davis, also blasted Kennedy for his off the cuff remarks.
In a statement, Liberty Counsel said the message was clear: "Government officials who disagree with him [Kennedy] and his four other colleagues regarding their newly invented and groundless marriage opinion ought to resign."
But the bigger question, according to the law firm, is: "What is the law and what happens when justices violate their oath to interpret the Constitution?"
Mat Staver, the chairman of Liberty Counsel, said unjust laws "should be resisted."
"Religious freedom and conscience should be protected. Justices or judges who disregard the Constitution and impose their own will should resign," he said.
Ed Whelan, a former Supreme Court clerk, also commented that "Kennedy's statement overlooks the very real possibility ... that Kim Davis may have a religious-liberty right under Kentucky law not to issue marriage licences to same-sex couples," WND reported.
"Kennedy's statement also overlooks the distinct claim ... that, contrary to the myth of judicial supremacy, government officials have an independent duty to apply their best understanding of the Constitution, not the Supreme Court's mistaken understanding of it," Whelan said.
WND also gathered the opinion of America's top legal scholars who were unanimous in saying that state and federal officials should treat the Supreme Court's creation of "same-sex marriage" as "anti-constitutional and illegitimate."
In their joint statement, the legal experts said that "by their own admission, [the Justices] can find no warrant for their ruling in the text, logic, structure or original understanding of the Constitution."
The legal experts also noted that the four justices who cast dissenting votes in the same-sex marriage ruling did not simply disagree but expressed fear that "severe harm would result" as a result of the ruling.
Justice Antonin Scalia called the decision "a naked judicial claim to legislative ... power; a claim fundamentally at odds with our system of government."
Justice Samuel Alito said it is "beyond dispute that the right to same-sex marriage is not among ... rights" rooted in the nation's history and tradition.
Chief Justice John Roberts said the creation of same-sex marriage was unconnected to the Constitution.