Get the Facts First

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I am stunned by some conservatives' attacks on the president and Harriet Miers (search) because of his nomination of her to the U.S. Supreme Court. Why? For the simple reason that she has not had a chance to tell us about herself and her views — yet it is apparently "open season" on her by her critics. The so-called intellectuals who say she is an intellectual lightweight look stupid in my mind, since they should at a minimum wait to hear from her before jumping to a conclusion and being positively insulting to the woman. It is ignorant at best to criticize with no information.

I don't get how one can in good conscience make such strident remarks about her talents — or lack thereof — for being a justice before she has had a chance to state her position on a number of important legal and constitutional issues. Fairness demands that we wait and get facts. It should not be shoot first, ask questions second. If, after getting the facts, one thinks she is not the best suited for the job, then of course, criticism about the choice is appropriate.

One other note: I like the fact that she is not a judge. We don't need nine clones on the Supreme Court with identical legal experiences. We should want nine people with different legal experiences taking a look at the important issues that wind up in the court. Of course just because she is not a judge is not enough for me to think she is the best — or even a good — candidate for the Supreme Court. I need to hear from her. I want to hear her thoughts on the Constitution (search) — every part of the Constitution.

I am also curious — but admittedly this is not a disqualifier — whether in her legal experience she represented people and not just corporations. Our guest last night said she had. But, how much? And were the people middle class, poor or just rich? I would like at least one justice on the Supreme Court to know what it is like to represent a citizen who fears he or she can't make a house or car payment, is getting discriminated against at work, etc. While many topics — like divorce — don't wind up in the Supreme Court, I would like to see at least one justice with this broad experience since a broad legal experience may sometime have value when the nine discuss and decide a case.

Finally, I would hope that in the end we would all want a justice with good and honest mind and good heart — someone willing to ponder the issues and not have a knee jerk reaction. We want a person who thinks — not a "know-it-all" since each issue presented to the court must be thought about. Courage to decide a case consistent with the Constitution and precedent is important — and not just playing to some political audience. Cases should be decided on the law and the Constitution — not politics. It is not which team you are on, but rather what is right and consistent. Remember, this is the legal/Constitution branch of government — not the political.

One other thing, every decision from the Supreme Court that you do not like is not legislating. Don't fall into that trap! It seems like critics of the Court say a decision they like is interpreting the Constitution and decisions they do not like is legislating. I hope before anyone repeats that legislating mantra about any case or court, that he or she actually reads the opinion... that same decency I am hoping people give Harriet Miers before "shooting" her. It is called getting the facts first.

Let's give Harriet Miers what she deserves: a fair, but thorough hearing. If after the hearing we find out she is not up to the job... then criticize. If after the hearing we find out she is up to the job, let's have some apologies from the critics (but don't count on it.)

Now for some of your e-mails:

E-mail No. 1 — The "Ann" in the next e-mail is probably Ann Coulter (search) who is very hostile to the president's choice of Harriet Miers:

Harriet Miers was a Math Major at SMU undergraduate. Does Ann think she could beat Harriet on an IQ test? Harriet would kick her butt. Could Ann solve a differential equation, an advanced calculus problem? No way. Have them both take a GRE (Graduate Record Exam) sample test — this would be a good lesson in humility for these mouthy, arrogant celebrities.
I bet Harriet would go for it.
Bruce White

E-mail No. 2

What are the Constitutional requirements to be a Supreme Court justice? I can't find any, but would assume citizenship would be one. I think Ann Coulter and others are wrong! Ms. Miers IS qualified, as are well over 200 million of our friends and neighbors!
(Actually, I think there are too many lawyers on the Court already!)
Michael Walker

E-mail No. 3

Loved your Vikings coverage, since I live in the metro area myself, and have actually been on Al and Alma's cruises too, in addition, I'm not real fond of the recent Vikings activity — nor in favor of taxpayer money funding a new Viking stadium.
Oh yeah, I'll continue watching — even though you have confessed to being a Packer fan!
All I can say is, I'm sorry! :)

E-mail No. 4

What do the fans say about the Vikings sex cruise? Hey, finally the Vikings are scoring.
Thomas A. Mayer

E-mail No. 5

Hi Greta,
I’m listening to your show right now (hardly ever miss it) and I was delighted to hear you mention that you are a Packers fan. Here in Wisconsin, our blood runs green and gold. Glad to hear that our fan base is spread out. Not surprising. Really sorry to hear about the trouble the Vikings are having — all that on top of an already miserable season. The Packers are on their way up. Keep your loyalties! Thanks!
You do a great job with the news. What’s new with the Natalee story? Keep up the good work!
A loyal fan of yours (and of FOX News)
Mary and Richard Schlicht
Tomah, WI

ANSWER: I grew up 20 miles from Lambeau Field.

E-mail No. 6 — The next two e-mails show we have lots of mothers watching... I received many of these, but posting just a few to make the point about the mothers out there. I appreciate that they watch and that they give me this tip as I did not know it:

I was just watching your show. You and Dr. Michael Baden were talking of the little boy that was found. You spoke of the clothing labels you found in his clothing. "Faded Glory" is a Wal-Mart brand. I wish it wasn't so general. I have watched you since you were on CNN. Keep up all the good work you do.
Brenda Mayes

E-mail No. 7

Hi Greta,
I was watching your show about the 3 year old that was found dead in IL. It was mentioned that the clothing was of a brand name "Faded Glory."
"Faded Glory" is a Wal-Mart specific brand. This probably does not help much since there are Wal-Marts just about everywhere these days, but thought I would pass the information along just the same. I hope the authorities find out what happened to the boy.
Wendy Solum
East Troy, WI

E-mail No. 8

The "Faded Glory" brand of clothing on the body of the small child found near Chicago is sold at Wal-Mart Stores here in Alabama. I believe all Wal-Mart stores carry that brand.
Rhonwyn McNeill
Montgomery, AL

E-mail No. 9

"Faded Glory" is a children's brand made by Wal-Mart or made for Wal-Mart. It is distributed nationwide. Ironically, just today I met a relative of one of my patients who works for a Wal-Mart distribution center here in Laurens, South Carolina. She was telling me how her job works. In a nutshell the clothes and shoes are brought in in huge crates. They are put on a conveyer belt where they are subsequently sorted and tagged as well as given a skew or ID number. Don't know if the clothes on the toddler would have those numbers on them. If so, you may be able to get that number and trace it to the distribution center and from there figure out where it went in the U.S. There are hundreds of distribution centers in the U.S. I hope this could help in some way locating where this child is from.
I will pray for the family of this missing child and hope the child can be returned to the family. What an incredibly sad story. When will this country wake up? When will this country get some good news for a change?

E-mail No. 10

Bodies are unique. Are there any unique birthmarks? Do X-rays reveal any broken bones that have been set in the past? Is there any evidence of scars from surgery of even a routine nature such as tonsils removed, ear surgery or appendicitis?
Any unique surgery might trigger the memory of some emergency room nurse or doctor or give hospitals a way to list 3 year olds they have treated.
Now I am going to bed.
Jim Vick
Preston, MS

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