why do judges have such enormous power with so little public accountability?

Judiciary Essay Assignment

This is a multi-part assignment.  You must reply to all required elements by the due date to have the potential to earn full credit.

1. Drawing on the material presented in your Open to Debate e-text and the corresponding power point lecture outlines and lectures or video lecture clips, explain, why judges, who are not popularly elected, have such wide authority to strike down popular laws; why do judges have such enormous power with so little public accountability?  Why does the U.S. have such an undemocratic institution in its democracy?

2. Drawing on Saffell, Meese, and Brennan in ch. 13 of your American Government: Examined reader (you may also find the material presented in the Judiciary chapter of your Open to Debate e-text and the corresponding power point lecture outline and lectures or video lecture clips to be helpful), do you think Justices should act according to the dictums of judicial activism or judicial restraint? You will want to include direct references to Meese and Brennan in your response.

3. Pretend you are a Supreme Court Justice who must render a decision in either Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission or Carpenter v. the United States.  Both cases are currently before the Supreme Court.  I want you to act as a S.C. Justice and, drawing on what you have already in this assignment, the U.S. Constitution, and other relevant course materials, render a decision.  How would you rule?  Why?  On what are you basing your decision?  Which parts of the Constitution or other documents are relevant?  Remember you are acting as a justice, not simply expressing your personal opinions.

Here is a link to the U.S. Supreme Court website:
http://www.supremecourt.gov, you can find many other resources online.

Tips for Success:

– I will be looking for direct references to assigned readings (author and page # citations are adequate).  Please limit yourself to the assigned materials.

– More thoughtful analyses utilizing critical thought will earn higher scores.

 

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