Supreme Court Justice Ginsburg tells Egypt: Don't use the U.S. Constitution as a model
Ginsburg points to countries where people look to government, rather than God for human rights
During a recent trip to Egypt, U.S Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader
Ginsburg had some advice for the leaders -- don't use the U.S.
Constitution as a model in penning your own governing document. Ginsburg
traveled to Egypt in late January to meet with that country's judges,
legal experts, law professors, and others in Cairo and Alexandria,
answering questions about the U.S. legal system and Constitution.
Judge Ginsburg, center, traveled to Egypt in late January to meet with that country's judges, legal experts, law professors, and others in Cairo and Alexandria, answering questions about the U.S. legal system and Constitution.
"I might look at the constitution of South Africa," Ginsburg suggested. "It really is, I think, a great piece of work that was done," she said. Ginsburg seemingly turned a blind eye to the nearly one million South Africans who have fled the country since the implementation of "democracy."
Ginsburg suggested such U.N.-modeled documents as the 1982 Charter of Rights and Freedoms implemented by Canada along with the Convention on Human Rights of the European Union, or EU that is in the midst of economic disunity and struggle.
"Yes, why not take advantage of what there is elsewhere in the world?" Ginsburg told her Egyptian audience.
Ginsburg assured told the faculty and students of the university's law school that "this is the most wonderful time in which to live and be among the young people who are helping your country and bringing about change during this exceptional transitional period to a real democratic state. Think of the people who lived before you and did not have this opportunity because they lived under a dictatorial regime. And they did not have the opportunity that you have had to be part of this social transformation."
Alluding to the U.S. Constitution, Ginsburg counseled her audience to do their best "to achieve the goals of this revolution and to continue to strive to create a government of the people, by the people and for the people."
When asked later about the process of drafting a new constitution, Ginsburg was firm. "Let me say first, that a constitution, as important as it is, will mean nothing unless the people are yearning for liberty and freedom," Ginsburg pointed out during a nearly 20-minute interview on Egypt's Al Hayat TV. "If the people don't care, then the best constitution in the world won't make any difference.
The spirit of liberty has to be in the population, and then the constitution . should safeguard basic fundamental human rights, like our First Amendment, the right to speak freely, and to publish freely, without the government as a censor."
Ginsburg's comments received negative reaction from conservatives. Mathew Staver, founder and chairman of the conservative Liberty Counsel and dean of the Liberty University School of Law, said that Ginsburg's comments were nothing less than an insult to the venerable document she is commissioned to protect.
"When given the opportunity to promote American liberty abroad, Justice Ginsburg did just the opposite and pointed Egypt in the direction of progressivism and the liberal agenda," Staver said.
"For a sitting U.S. Supreme Court Justice to speak derisively about the Constitution she is sworn to uphold is distressing, to say the least. Justice Ginsburg's comments about our Constitution undermine the Supreme Court as an institution dedicated to the rule of law, as well as our founding document."
© 2012, Catholic Online. Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Judge Ginsburg, U.S. Constituion, Egypt, South Africa
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