"Conservative Judge Slams Activist Congress"
A federal appeals court today rejected Terry Schiavo’s parents’ latest attempt to get her feeding tube reconnected. In his concurrence, Judge Stanley Birch, a Bush I appointee, became the first judge to declare Congress’s actions in the case unconstitutional:
A popular epithet directed by some members of society, including some members of Congress, toward the judiciary involves the denunciation of “activist judges.” Generally, the definition of an “activist judge” is one who decides the outcome of a controversy before him according to personal conviction, even one sincerely held, as opposed to the dictates of the law as constrained by legal precedent and, ultimately, our Constitution. In resolving the Schiavo controversy it is my judgment that, despite sincere and altruistic motivation, the legislative and executive branches of our government have acted in a manner demonstrably at odds with our Founding Fathers’ blueprint for the governance of a free people — our Constitution.