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15 Apr 2012 - Kudos to a Judge with Common Sense

“Who is writing the laws of our land today?” That was the opening line in a recent e-mail from a reader who raised a question that I am hearing more and more these days; people wondering if the Constitution is functioning in the way our nation’s founders intended when they wrote it and established three branches with specific responsibilities. The Legislative Branch was directed to write the laws; the Executive Branch, to approve or disapprove; and the Judicial Branch, the courts, to interpret and rule on some of the laws.

This e-mail writer says “It seems to me that the courts, from the State to the Federal, are now writing the laws.” When you look at court decisions on environmental laws, trade laws, and soon on the nation’s healthcare with the upcoming Supreme Court decision on ObamaCare, I think the writer makes a strong point. Congress writes the laws, but then the Courts re-write them, and I don’t think that is what our founding fathers had in mind.

On the subject of the courts, time out this week for a ‘tip of the hat’ to a San Francisco Judge, Richard Kramer. Here is the background.

It was late 2010 that a San Francisco mother of two children, Monet Parham, along with, oh yes, The Center for Science in the Public Interest, a Washington, D.C. consumer advocacy group, filed a class-action lawsuit to stop McDonald’s from using toys to market its Happy Meals to children in California. The suit claimed McDonald’s was violating consumer protection laws and exploiting children’s vulnerability by using toys to lure them to eat nutritionally unbalanced meals that can lead to obesity.

McDonald’s said the lawsuit was without merit and detracted from “the important issue of children’s health and nutrition.”

Then, here comes The Center for Science in the Public Interest again, calling the use of toys to market food a “predatory practice that undermines parents, causes rifts in families and harms kids’ health.”

Judge Kramer threw the lawsuit out of court, said it was without merit, and I fully agree. It comes back to something I have discussed many times...what about personal responsibility? Isn’t it up to us as parents to say no to our kids on what they eat and what they buy? This would have been one more law to allow us to lay the blame on someone else and again, avoid personal responsibility.

My thoughts on Samuelson Sez.