Clarence Thomas Holds Some Pretty Horrifying Views on Human Dignity

Clarence Thomas slammed the majority that ruled in favor of marriage equality, saying the five U.S. Supreme Court justices had engaged in misguided efforts to advance dignity for same-sex couples.


Thomas – who wrote his own opinion, along with the court’s three other dissenters – argued that the Constitution contained no “dignity” clause.

“Even if it did, the government would be incapable of bestowing dignity,” Thomas argued. “Human dignity has long been understood in this country to be innate.”

Thomas argued that the Declaration of Independence affirmed that all humans were created in the vision of God and therefore enjoyed inherent worth.

Therefore, the conservative justice argued, the government cannot grant or take away a person’s dignity – and he offered some rather astounding examples to support his claims.

“Slaves did not lose their dignity (any more than they lost their humanity) because the government allowed them to be enslaved,” Thomas said. “Those held in internment camps did not lose their dignity because the government confined them. And those denied governmental benefits certainly do not lose their dignity because the government denies them those benefits. The government cannot bestow dignity, and it cannot take it away.”

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