Barney Frank has called one of the most senior justices of the Supreme Court a homophobe. Justice Scalia is the core of the right wing of the court, a staunch supporter of limited constitutional protections and traditional interpretations of constitutional language and, as Frank contends, a homophobe.
Well, we can't say for sure that Scalia wouldn't sit down for dinner with a homosexual, or have a pleasant conversation about the various sock colors that match his robe.
But we can be sure that he does not support protecting gay rights and certainly feels that gay sex is a pretty immoral thing to do.
He also, by the way, doesn't feel that abortion is protected by the Constitution, nor does he feel that killing kids who commit crimes is "cruel and unusual punishment."
The sad part of this story is that Scalia is not going anywhere anytime soon.
During the election many indicated that court appointments may be the single most important issue of the next four years. Ginsburg is suffering from an aggressive cancer and Stevens is 88 years old and likely to choose to retire under a Democratic President.
But replacing those two Justices will merely keep the balance of the court as it is now: four "left," four right and one sitting in the middle (keeping in mind that left wing for a Supreme Court Justice is not the same as popular progressive politics).
We would be lucky to lose Scalia. If Obama has a chance to replace the next two oldest judges -- Scalia or Kennedy -- the balance would be tipped and the three baby conservatives -- Thomas, Alito and Roberts -- would be on their own.
Until then, we should keep dissenting.
America is a different country than Scalia thinks it is.
It's not a place interested in a dead Constitution that protects no one not contemplated by the founders over two hundred years ago. It is a country with a Black President, a female Secretary of State and a very public and close battle over what rights and freedoms "sodomites" deserve.
We must remind him he is wrong everyday until we finally are rid of him.