AP Government Post #5

There is some debate on what Judicial Restraint and Judicial Activism means.  The video below show Supreme Court Justices Scalia and Breyer debate review and activism.  The question is which is better, restraint or activism? Be sure to say way you selected what you selected.  Which justice supports which view point?

Activism or Restraint Part 1

Activism or Restraint Part 2

This post will  close on March 22 at 11:59 PM. 

4 thoughts on “AP Government Post #5

  1. In my opinion, I believe that, based off of the quality of the arguments, judicial restraint may be better than activism. Justice Stephen Breyer is considered a judicial activist and Justice Scalia supports judicial restraint. I felt as though Justice Scalia had a great argument when he talked about how it is not the disposition of the change that is the argument, but utilizing the legislature to bring about modern change. He made a point about how nothing has changed ideologically between then and now that would cause the constitution to bring about change. It is solely the differing opinions and what people believe now compared to back then. He does not believe that the Constitution can change its meaning on cases based off of the opinions of the people. The Constitution shouldn’t be able to be morphed in order to make one thing bad that used to be considered okay. He also made great points in the second video talking about majority ruling on decisions, and how even the limitations implemented by the Bill of Rights such as religion and free speech were voted upon by a majority back then, even if they contradict the majority now. Overall, interpretation of the constitution can be a tricky subject at times, but based off of both videos, I personally felt that Justice Scalia had a much stronger and more effective argument than that of Justice Breyer, so in this case I select judicial restraint.

    • I agree completely. The idea of the Constitution being a constant and not changing based off of others’ opinions is what convinced me to favor restraint over activism. While Breyer made some good points, I still feel that Scalia overall had the better argument.

  2. There is some debate on what Judicial Restraint and Judicial Activism means. The video below show Supreme Court Justices Scalia and Breyer debate review and activism. The question is which is better, restraint or activism? Be sure to say way you selected what you selected. Which justice supports which view point?

    The debate between Justice Scalia (Restraint) and Justice Breyer (Activist) was a very interesting one. It was truly a debate between two very different points of view. I feel that restraint is the better option. With the delicate balance between the three branches of government, I favor restraint because it keeps the judicial branch from becoming too overpowered. I liked Justice Scalia’s argument much better because he seemed to stick strongly to his ideals and made the point that the constitution should not change because of the opinion of those enforcing it. He also then went on to make several great points regarding the Bill of Rights and previous legislative acts. Ocerall, I feel that judicial restraint is would be the better choice of the two. I also felt that Justice Scalia’s arguments were stronger and more well rounded.

    • I agree, the two of them most definitely had different point of views, and they made it very obvious during their debate. I like how you mention that judicial restraint keeps the judicial branch from becoming too overpowered. I also agree, Justice Scalia’s argument seemed to have much more depth and he overall seemed more confident with his ideals.

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