Hutch News: A firsthand civics lesson

By Jason Probst  | Hutch News

Education can take many forms, and for Hutchinson-area residents and students this week, it took the form of a firsthand examination of the work of the Kansas Supreme Court, which on Tuesday held a session here.

The education is especially timely because many of the justices on the Supreme Court are under assault from a political machine that wants to control the judicial branch of government. And many people seemingly could benefit from a refresher course on civics and the importance of a proper division of government branches that serves to check and balance one another.

In recent years, the term “activist judges” has been tossed around to show contempt for justices and judges who don’t rule with the prevailing political winds of the day. The truth, however, is that justice done right pays no attention to the political environment, instead focusing its attention on facts and law – specifically the constitutions of Kansas and the United States. If a ruling violates the people’s will, the remedy rests with the Legislature to alter the law or propose constitutional amendments in a way that more closely aligns with public sentiment.

Thanks to the Kansas Supreme Court road show this week, area students and residents had the chance to see the court in action and to hear from the justices who are tasked with the intimidating and important job of interpreting the laws of our state that have been created over the past 155 years by the Kansas Legislature.

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