Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Supremes Got This One Mostly Right

I've written before on the junior high girl from Arizona who was strip-searched at school in a failed attempt to find prescription strength ibuprofin that another student said she had. Her case made it to the US Supreme Court, which has ruled:

A former middle-school student who was strip-searched by school officials looking for ibuprofen pain medication won a partial victory of her Supreme Court appeal Thursday in a case testing the discretion of officials to ensure classroom safety...

But reflecting the divisiveness over the issue, Souter said, "We think these differences of opinion from our own are substantial enough to require immunity for the school officials in this case."

No student should have to go through what this girl did.

1 comment:

mazenko said...

There are times to stand on principle - and I guess offering the lone dissenting vote poses no danger - and there are times that doing so just makes you look like a complete idiot. Exhibit A for today is the dissenting vote from Clarence Thomas in the decision to rule an Arizona middle school’s strip search of a thirteen-year-old girl unconstitutional.

Justice David Souter rationally argued “there was no indication of any danger to the student from the power or quantity of the drugs, no any reason to suspect [she] was carrying any pills in her underwear.” In the dissent, Thomas mindlessly argued “judges are not qualified to second-guess the best manner for maintaining quiet and order in a school environment.”

However, judges are allowed to use common sense and rational. Maintaining “quiet”? I’ve never really thought highly of Thomas’ perspectives - this is just reason number 75 why he aligns himself with the crazier side of conservatism.