From the Right: No one is above the law, but how selective is enforcement?

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By Don Schmitz

John Adams stated “to the end it may be a government of laws and not of men.” The founders were strongly influenced by the ancient philosopher Aristotle, who understood that powerful leaders would with emotional bias ultimately abuse their authority — often with the best of intentions — stating; “Passion influences those who are in power … Law is reason without desire”. This is the bedrockcornerstone of our republic. 

In 1957 Governor Faubus withdrew the Arkansas National Guard he’d promised would protect nine black children from the segregationist mob as they entered Central High School following the Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, so President Eisenhower deployed the 101st Airborne to do so. In addressing the nation while decrying the failure in Little Rock, he lauded the majority of Southern communities for abiding by the law, saying “they demonstrated to the world that we are a nation in which laws, not men, are supreme.”

“Equal Justice Under the Law” is etched in the marble above the doors to the Supreme Court, yet with stunning rapidity this principle is eroding in America. Government’s power to pass laws is vested in Congress, which for example has created laws dealing with immigration. Yet here in California, state and local leaders passionately defy enforcement of those laws. 

Local law enforcement is prohibited from cooperating with ICE by state statute. In 2018 Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf issued a public warning that ICE was going to make arrests in the city. The arrests happened, with half being convicted criminals (beyond immigration laws), but others were aided by the mayor and escaped. Federal law specifies shielding an illegal immigrant can result in imprisonment for five years as a felon, yet she wasn’t prosecuted, and Gavin Newson issued a statement praising her. Tell me, without coloring the topic with your beliefs, how was she different than segregationist Gov. George Wallace blocking the door at the University of Alabama in 1963? Both were breaking the law pursuing their beliefs.

Last September, the Justice Department DOJ arrested a pro-life activist for impeding access to an abortion clinic as he defended his young son when attacked by a pro-choice activist. The jury unanimously acquitted him in January. Yet the same DOJ turned a blind eye and failed to enforce federal law against pro-choice protesters outside the homes of Supreme Court justices, intending to influence their decision, a federal crime. 

Hunter Biden has been under federal investigation since 2018, and the FBI has had his laptop since 2020, replete with videos of him using drugs. It was dismissed as Russian disinformation before the election, but as revealed in the “Twitter Files” released by Elon Musk, FBI lawyer Jim Baker falsely promoted the Russian disinformation lie. Sadly, and predictably, a recent Rasmussen poll found 64 percent believe the FBI has become “politically weaponized, starting from the top in Washington.” Hunter has admitted his crack cocaine addiction, a felony. He purchased a firearm in 2018 stating on the form “No” to using any controlled substance, committing another felony. Federal agents are still “investigating.” Most other Americans would already be serving time. 

The people of California have repeatedly voted for the death penalty. It is a state law, yet Gov. Newsom simply refuses to follow through with executing heinous murderers. L.A. County District Attorney George Gascon similarly refuses to seek the death penalty, nor will he apply gang enhancements for sentencing, which is the law in Penal code 186.22 adding three years to life in state prison. He also directed the district attorneys to dismiss misdemeanors including trespassing, making criminal threats, and resisting arrest. Both took an oath of office to uphold our laws, yet both are picking and choosing which laws they prefer to enforce. 

It’s a national trend: Boston DA Rachael Rollins listed 15 laws passed by the legislature she wouldn’t enforce, including breaking and entering, threats, and receiving stolen property. Similar policies have been adopted by Baltimore’s DA Marilyn Mosby, and Chicago’s DA Kim Foxx. Fairfax, Virginia, Commonwealth Attorney Steve Descanso refuses to implement the state death penalty, even in the 2008 conviction of Mark Lawlor, who after smoking cocaine beat 28-year-old Genevieve Orange 47 times with a claw hammer, then raped her as she lay on the floor choking to death in her own blood. Descanso crowed about his decision, because his personal passions led him to believe it was the right thing. Never mind the law.

American radicals promote defunding the police, emptying our prisons of properly convicted criminals, and worst of all ignoring laws that they don’t agree with. Political patronage and anarchy is the result. They assert our legal system is inherently unjust to rationalize contorting and ignoring our laws, while lifting the blindfold off Lady Justice, putting their finger on her scale, and dulling her sword of enforcement and respect.