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Tommy_Carcetti

(43,265 posts)
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 10:12 AM Dec 2020

Nobody wants to be Roger Brooke Taney

I grew up near the birthplace of Roger Brooke Taney.

Under normal circumstances you would think being the home of a Supreme Court Chief Justice would be a matter of great civic pride.

Museums, monuments, schools, roads, buildings—all named in your honor. All for the fame that you brought your hometown. It’s what typically happens with locals who achieved great heights.

But there was nothing around me named for Roger Brooke Taney. There was no museum. No monuments or statues—not even in the era of erecting statues to controversial figures as a symbol of defiance.

The only indication that we had any connection whatsoever to Roger Brooke Taney was a small historical plaque near his birthplace, a sign so insignificant when driving past it at 60 miles per hour that barely any of our own long time residents knew it existed.

For Roger Brooke Taney was the author of the Dred Scott decision, an infamous ruling denying the humanity of fellow human beings kept in slavery which is almost universally regarded as the worst decision ever in Supreme Court history.

Nobody wants that legacy. Not the least of which being other members of the Supreme Court, regardless of ideology.

Justices Gorsuch, Kavanaugh and Barrett all owe their seats to Donald Trump (and to some extent Mitch McConnell and his hypocritical machinations as well).

They received a position for life, and one where the burden to remove them prematurely is extremely high.

No doubt about it, they will be on the wrong end of many, many bad and unsavory decisions for years to come. And that’s quite a sad and depressing fact.

But dare I say none of them want to be put in the company of Roger Brooke Taney.

None of them feel the need or loyalty to Donald Trump to the extent they would support his demands to overturn a fairly decided Presidential election and disenfranchise millions of American voters.

They got what they wanted from Trump. And now they’re done with him. And none of them want to follow him down the path towards American infamy.

This is not a matter of principle on their part but rather mere practicality.

Nobody wants to be Roger Brooke Taney.

22 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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Nobody wants to be Roger Brooke Taney (Original Post) Tommy_Carcetti Dec 2020 OP
Quite an interesting read. Thanks for posting. patricia92243 Dec 2020 #1
Thanks. nt Tommy_Carcetti Dec 2020 #3
portrait of Taney in the Harvard Law School library kiri Dec 2020 #5
Thanks, Tommy UpInArms Dec 2020 #2
You're welcome. nt Tommy_Carcetti Dec 2020 #7
Trump seems to think that all human behavior is transactional. MrModerate Dec 2020 #4
Yup. nt Tommy_Carcetti Dec 2020 #21
The Roberts Court already has the stain of the 2000 election clusterfuck on it... Wounded Bear Dec 2020 #6
That was the Rehnquist court in 2000 cojoel Dec 2020 #8
Chief Justice William Rehnquist's Court MagickMuffin Dec 2020 #9
(Roberts court didn't do that) lastlib Dec 2020 #10
they sure do have the stain of the Citizen's United decision on their hands rurallib Dec 2020 #14
Several Years ago representatives of the Taney family apologized... doctorzuma Dec 2020 #11
Even the Taneys don't want to be Justice Taney grantcart Dec 2020 #13
Great Point doctorzuma Dec 2020 #19
Mortgage, credit card, country club fees notwithstanding /nt bucolic_frolic Dec 2020 #12
This puts a nice image at the forefront of this proposition. BobTheSubgenius Dec 2020 #15
On the trash heap of history StarfishSaver Dec 2020 #16
Just learned something new! Had no idea the building was so recent!! LeftInTX Dec 2020 #17
Isn't that an interesting fun fact? StarfishSaver Dec 2020 #18
StarfishSaver, you were the person I first learned about Taney Mike 03 Dec 2020 #20
... StarfishSaver Dec 2020 #22

kiri

(809 posts)
5. portrait of Taney in the Harvard Law School library
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 12:11 PM
Dec 2020

There is a large portrait of Taney in the Harvard Law School library.

 

MrModerate

(9,753 posts)
4. Trump seems to think that all human behavior is transactional.
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 11:53 AM
Dec 2020

That because he put three justices on the bench, they now owe him a favorable review.

Another aspect of US governance that Trump has never bothered to figure out.

Wounded Bear

(59,068 posts)
6. The Roberts Court already has the stain of the 2000 election clusterfuck on it...
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 12:13 PM
Dec 2020

I don't think they want any part in getting immersed in state electoral politics again.

cojoel

(964 posts)
8. That was the Rehnquist court in 2000
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 12:33 PM
Dec 2020

Roberts was appointed by George W. Bush in 2005.

I suppose you could argue that Bush v. Gore enabled George W. Bush to make that appointment, but I don't think that was your point.

lastlib

(23,659 posts)
10. (Roberts court didn't do that)
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 12:39 PM
Dec 2020

John Roberts wasn't appointed CJ until 2005. Clarence and Breyer are the only current justices who participated in that abomination. Rehnquist was CJ at the time.

doctorzuma

(44 posts)
11. Several Years ago representatives of the Taney family apologized...
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 12:48 PM
Dec 2020

Several Years ago, a representative of the Taney family (Charles Taney) apologized to Dred Scott's relatives for the actions of his distant relative. I understand it was a powerful and emotionally touching event for both families. Its the type of healing experiences we need if we are to ever move forward as a country.

BobTheSubgenius

(11,615 posts)
15. This puts a nice image at the forefront of this proposition.
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 01:21 PM
Dec 2020

I posted a similar thought the other day, in which I opined that SCOTUS, probably every single jurist, has their legacy in mind. No one wants to be remembered for something that is clearly....CLEARLY not rooted in the Constitution, or even subsequent, more minor laws.

 

StarfishSaver

(18,486 posts)
16. On the trash heap of history
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 01:32 PM
Dec 2020

Even at the U.S Capitol, where the original Supreme Court courtroom is (interesting that two branches of government functioned out of the same building until 1935 when the Court got its own building), Roger Taney's bust was moved out of the main courtroom where other Chief Justice' busts are and relegated to the robing room.

Last summer, the House passed a bill calling for Taney's bust to be removed altogether and replaced with a bust of Thurgood Marshall. Of course, the bill is now sitting in the pile of other bills on McConnell's desk.

LeftInTX

(26,296 posts)
17. Just learned something new! Had no idea the building was so recent!!
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 01:39 PM
Dec 2020

I just assumed it was built in the 19th Century

Mike 03

(16,616 posts)
20. StarfishSaver, you were the person I first learned about Taney
Wed Dec 9, 2020, 04:39 PM
Dec 2020

from in a post a long time ago having to do with a SCOTUS decision. It sent me to Google, and it was truly fascinating.

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