The Second Challenge: Imperial Judiciary

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People have always been concerned about our judicial system making massive decisions in an undemocratic manner and while there are parts of our nation’s history (Jost). There have been decisions that were dreadful for our nation, Dred Scott v. Sandford; but there are decisions that everyone can agree with in retrospect, Brown v. Board of Education. Also, there are decisions that still divide us as a nation, Bush v. Gore and Roe V. Wade. There are a lot of issues that come from our current judicial system; however, I understand that the problems that come from it are not going to come from any quick fix, and we may have to live with some of them. Looking at the history of the judicial branch of the United States Government, I believe it needs to be limited in its judicial review power, but have certain exceptions where necessary in some cases. In William Hudson’s book, American Democracy in Peril, he writes about different “challenges” that play a vital role in shaping the future of the United States. One is the problem of the “imperial judiciary”. Hudson defines its as that the justice system in the United States has become so powerful that it is answering and deciding upon important policy questions, questions that probably should be answered by our democratic legislatures. Instead of having debates in which everyone’s voices are heard and are considered in final decision-making process, a democratic-like process; we have a single judge or a small group of judges making decisions that effect millions of citizens, an “undemocratic” process. Hudson personally believes the current state of judicialized politics is harming policy decisions in Americans. According to him, the judicial branch is the “least democratic branch”, and ... ... middle of paper ... ...e, that it being “un-democratic” is actually a strength that sometimes helps our nation in making important decisions that others will not make? Works Cited Chemerinsky, Erwin, and Catherine Fisk. "Judges Do Make Law It's Their Job." USA Today. Gannett Co. Inc., 23 Aug. 2005. Web. 01 Mar. 2011. . Hudson, William E. American Democracy in Peril: Eight Challenges to America's Future. Washington, DC: CQ, 2010. Print. Jost, Kenneth. "The Federal Judiciary." CQ Researcher 8.10 (1998). CQ Researcher. SAGE Publications. Web. 01 Mar. 2011. . Palmer, Elizabeth A. "The Court and Public Opinion." CQ Weekly 2 Dec. 2000. CQ Weekly. SAGE Publications. Web. 1 Mar. 2000. .

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