In the avalanche of news stories coming at us ad nauseam, one article in particular stood out from the others. Not because it tackled a polarizing topic, but because it was…not the norm.
Supreme Court Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett struck a surprising blow against those seeking to defy COVID vaccine mandates on Thursday when she dismissed a challenge to a college’s mandate without comment.
Newsweek – 8/3/2021
This bit of news really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone keeping tabs on this traditional conservative appointed by former President Donald Trump to serve on the Supreme Court. And it wasn’t the first indication that she may not bend as far right as the Moral Majority would like from a lifelong conservative.
Barrett is the fifth woman to serve on the Supreme Court and was caught in the whirlwind of controversy, panic, and outrage from many liberals when she was nominated to succeed the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a popular figurehead who embraced liberal politics and was respected by many on both sides of the political aisle. Put on the fast-track, Barrett passed the scrutiny of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and began her service on the Supreme Court in October 2020.
While the Political Left bemoaned Barrett’s entry as the newest member of the Supreme Court, this feminist had a gut feeling that behind the curtain shielding this self-described conservative, hid a woman who wasn’t just another cookie-cutter traditionalist. Barrett is no slouch in the educational arena, where she was a Professor of Law at Notre Dame Law School, and the ability to balance work, education, and parenting, has given this woman the ability to truly see and understand the world beyond her front lawn—all while climbing the right side of the political ladder.
Giving credence to the ideology of a moderate conservative, just eight months into her job, Barrett sided with her liberal associates when it came time for the Supreme Court to vote on the upholding of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. While many conservatives were disappointed in her actions, it probably should not have come as a surprise. She is not the first Supreme Court Justice to relax her conservative views once comfortably seated in a political position that offers lifelong employment without the downside of having to appease voters. Supreme Court Justice John Roberts, nominated by former President George Bush, has also voted on the side of liberal politics on several occasions, and, like Barrett, also voted to uphold the Affordable Care Act.
While Barrett may have a smidgeon of liberal leanings, it would be unrealistic to believe that she will suddenly step across the political line drawn with a permanent marker by far too many politicians to join her liberal constituents on most issues, but it is refreshing to know that she is not a rubber-stamping politician who cannot entertain free thought beyond the spectrum of her political base. The world of Law deserves a balance of beliefs and people who are not afraid to express free thought and the occasional belief that is unpopular.
This feminist applauds the actions of conservatives who aren’t afraid to occasionally lean a little left. Just as those who traditionally follow liberal thought shouldn’t automatically discount the other side. Listening to the other side is good for the soul and good for our country.
Heidi McCrary is a writer and author of Chasing North Star. Keep up with her at https://heidimccrary.net/ and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/HeidiMcCraryAuthor