I intend to live to 120 years old or more. That brings us to the year 2095. Amy Coney Barrett will probably still be on the Supreme Court. She’s just a few years older than me. It’s a lifetime appointment. Women tend to live longer than men. And Supreme Court justices have access to some of the best health care in the world — certainly better health care than self-employed artists and writers in a country where the Affordable Care Act is struck down and Medicare and Social Security are ruled unconstitutional.
Then again, her job is more stressful than mine. So maybe it’s a wash.
In the year 2095, climate change is forecast to have led to four feet or more of ocean rise and four degrees C of warming. Double the very difficult to hit 2 degree target that the Paris Agreement sought to avoid.
Most people are focused on health care and reproductive choice in the new Supreme Court, and I am too. But Trump’s three justices were not picked primarily for social issues, they were picked for the bottom line of big businesses, for opposition to taxes and the social safety net, opposition to regulation. That means fighting climate change between now and 2095 will be that much harder. Unless there are some serious changes to the courts, or the politics of the climate emergency, or both.
Update: This set of op-eds in the New York Times on how to reform the courts — including, but not limited to, adding more justices — was worth the read.