Tuesday, November 08, 2011

The Supreme Court Is Misreading The Issue on Jerusalem

My Right Word

I read this in the Washington Post report on the Supreme Court's deliberations of the Jerusalem birth registration matter:

The justices seemed reluctant to question the administration’s position that the law was an improper congressional attempt to speak for the country on foreign policy.

Justice Elena Kagan said the congressional action read more like a foreign policy statement than a passport law.

“It’s a passport statute that seems to have nothing to do with immigration functions that passport statutes usually serve,” Kagan said. Chief Justice John Roberts said that it seemed that the family was asking the court to substitute its foreign policy judgment for the president’s, as if to say “we know foreign policy better; we don’t think it’s going to be a big deal.”

and left this comment there:

Actually, the matter is quite bureaucratic and the judges should intervene and instruct the State Dept. to add a country. In leaving the country unidentified, no one can know in later years if the child was born in Jerusalem, New Zealand; or Jerusalem in Neuenkirchen, Germany; or Jerusalem in either Vermont, Ohio or Arkansas; or in Lincoln, England. From which country could he claim a second passport or pension rights? Or could he be subject to right, privileges or responsibilities to a second country?

In addition, State Dept. guidelines force clerks at the Consulate in Jerusalem to register an American citizen born outside Jerusalem but west of the Jordan River as being born in, say, Shiloh WEST BANK or Ramallah WEST BANK.

But the "West Bank" is not a state.

By what right can they do that but refuse to recognize Israel's adminstration of Jerusalem?

The State Dept. is not only being discriminatory against Israel and logice, but favors a non-existent Arab "country". That is not justice nor law and the Supreme Court should decide on that issue.


A related exchange between Kagan and Lewin produced a rare moment of levity in the courtroom. Kagan told Lewin: "I think you would have a better argument if this statute said if you were born in Jerusalem you can pick anything you want in your passport. You can pick Jerusalem, you can pick Israel, or you can pick Palestine. But the statute in fact doesn't say that. It says you can pick Israel."

Lewin responded: "The statute does say that the individual passport holder … if he's born before 1948, he can say Palestine."

That led Kagan, born in 1960 and 51 years old, to say, "Well, you have to be very old to say Palestine."

To which Ginsburg, born in 1933 and age 78, interjected, "Not all that old." The justices and spectators erupted in laughter.

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