Neil Gorsuch is a reactionary with “troubling” views that are “far outside the mainstream” and represent an “imminent threat to our constitutional rights.” That’s according to the various organs of the activist left that have set out to torpedo his nomination to the Supreme Court. To get a better picture of the Coloradan’s philosophy, and his sense of right and wrong, start with his book, “The Future of Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia.”
Published in 2006, the same year he joined the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the book reveals a profound and morally imaginative mind that defies the caricatures of an enemy of progress. His main impetus is to preserve—not dismantle—the Anglo-American legal tradition’s commitment to universal equality and human dignity.
Fair-minded liberals may even be persuaded by his case against euthanasia. They will probably be surprised to learn that his thinking on the issue isn’t based on faith. Rather, Judge Gorsuch relies on secular moral reasoning to argue that legalization risks dehumanizing the most vulnerable Americans and imperiling the Constitution’s promise of equal protection under law.
At the heart of the book is the question of when to limit self-determination in classically liberal societies, like America’s, that are constitutionally committed to maximizing it.
In answering that question, American law took a very broad view beginning in the second half of the 20th century, as the Supreme Court struck down laws against contraceptives, abortion and sodomy, among other things. The Constitution, the high court repeatedly held, shields people’s most intimate and personal choices from government interference.