Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas issued a warning on Thursday about “destroying our institutions” before going on to argue that judges need to stay out of politics.
The conservative justice then discussed what divides people, going on to point specifically at the media in our country, during a powerful address he delivered at Notre Dame University to over 800 students.
“The country has gotten to the point where we’re really good at finding something that separates us,” Thomas went on to say in his address. “I think the media makes it sound as though you are just always going right to your personal preference. So if they think you are anti-abortion or something personally, they think that’s the way you always will come out. They think you’re for this or for that. They think you become like a politician.”
Thomas, the longest-serving justice on the Supreme Court, was asked by a student whether the legal questions he considers ever come into conflict with his Catholic faith, according to the Washington Post .
“I don’t do a lot of hand-wringing in my opinions and tell people, ‘Oh, I’m really sad.’ That’s not the role of a judge,” Thomas continued. “You do your job, and you go cry alone.”
Thomas also cautioned if the public truly wants reform, people need to think beyond what is right in front of them and consider the consequences of changing the system.
Thomas then quoted a nugget of wisdom from his grandfather, who said, “After you’ve done that, and now what? What’s your next step?”
The Supreme Court returns to hearing in-person oral arguments next month, the first time since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The justices are expected to hear a case on Mississippi’s ban of most abortions after 15 weeks.
Thomas is one of six conservative justices who let a new abortion law in Texas that bans the murder of the unborn after six weeks, stand while the legal battle concerning the case continues forward.