Tags: noonan | gay | marriage | court

Peggy Noonan: Americans Skeptical of ‘Black-Robed Masters’

Sunday, 24 Mar 2013 07:03 PM

By Kenneth Hanner

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Americans continue to question pronouncements from the “black-robed masters” on the Supreme Court when it comes to sweeping social changes, former presidential speechwriter Peggy Noonan said on Sunday.

“Americans don’t take it well and don’t accept it as a resolution when their black-robed masters in Washington decide to put on them what they decide is the right thing,” Noonan said on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos.” “One of the great sins of Roe versus Wade, the abortion decision of 40 years ago, was that it decided everyone has to do it one way, instead of leaving it to the states.”

Noonan made the comments in response to host Stephanopoulos’s referencing a speech by Justice Anthony Kennedy, who said that a democracy’s major decisions should not be dependent on nine unelected people from a narrow legal background.

“It seems to me it is certainly in line with conservative political thinking — but I think it would be acceptable certainly to liberal thinking — that when there are these gnawing, disagreeing questions going on in America, if you can't solve it here, you can say everybody can solve it down there” in the states, said Noonan, a Wall Street Journal columnist and former speech writer for President Reagan.

The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments this week on two major gay marriage cases. On Tuesday, the court will review Proposition 8, California’s ballot initiative banning same-sex marriage and, on Wednesday, the justices will take up the Defense of Marriage Act, a federal law which defines marriage as between a man and a woman.

“Let state by state make their decision. You will immediately have New York having some of the most liberal decisions on this issue,” Noonan said. “You will perhaps have Utah or Arkansas, having less liberal decisions. Work questions out that way as much as possible.”

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