Supreme Court coup demolishes rights: Organized resistance can stop them!

July 2, 2022

Melinda Butterfield

The theft of a fundamental, popular right from women and other people who can become pregnant – more than half the population–  garnered the most attention. But in the last two weeks of June the court unleashed an avalanche of reactionary decisions repealing the rights of workers and oppressed people:

  • Police are no longer required to inform suspects of their Miranda rights against self-incrimination;
  • Two major blows against the separation of church and state, allowing government funding for religious schools and school staff to lead prayer in public schools;
  • Undermined the sovereignty of Indigenous nations established in treaties with the U.S. government;
  • Severely limited federal agencies’ authority to regulate corporate polluters, effectively gutting the federal government’s ability to mount any response to climate change;
  • In a “shadow docket” case, the court upheld the right of right-wing state governments to gerrymander voting districts to minimize Black and Brown voters;
  • Additional rulings supporting police brutality, limiting the rights of prisoners to challenge their convictions and immigrants to challenge their detention; and more. (Read a complete breakdown on this Twitter thread.)

The coup enacted by the unelected, appointed-for-life Supreme Court is sweeping. It is no exaggeration to say these decisions taken together have completely upended the social and political landscape of everyday life in the U.S. Each ruling was crafted to have a domino effect which will have consequences we cannot fully know at this time.

Already the court has announced plans for further attacks. Its next docket will include a case arguing that states should have control over the results of federal elections, which could allow state governments to decide the 2024 presidential election. Another that threatens to gut the Indian Child Welfare Act that put an end to the official policy of kidnapping Indigenous children and putting them up for adoption.

…. We must not only fight to push back the attacks on democratic rights, but struggle for political power and new forms of governance that invest power in the people, not the banks, corporate monopolies and landlords. 

First of all, the undemocratic institutions rooted in slavery – the Supreme Court and Electoral College – must be abolished.

We must raise demands that address the most urgent life-and-death needs of millions, like a rollback on food and fuel prices, an end to rent-gouging, a minimum wage of $20 or more, and wage increases that keep up with inflation.

The fightback must be international in scope, building solidarity with the people of the world struggling to throw off U.S. imperialism’s military, economic and political domination.

It must be a movement led by the working class, oppressed communities, the poor and disenfranchised, whose very ability to exist often now hangs by the slenderest thread. 

We must build a movement toward socialism to defeat the capitalists’ movement toward fascism.

Milwaukee, June 24, 2022 / Photo: Joe Brusky

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