A lot of people have made a lot of silly statments about a possible replacement for Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. This suggestion by columnist Richard Cohen to pick Judge Judy might just be the silliest one so far. Yes, Cohen is trying to be clever, but he also says he's mostly serious. The sad part is that a lot of critics of the court probably would like someone exactly like Judge Judy, pragmatic, just listening to the specifics of a certain case, and not worrying about such trifles as the Constitution, precedent and the slow development of common law. Come to think of it, that's sort of how O'Connor has ruled, which is one reason the law today is such a muddle.
Cohen's column reminds me of this exchange from "Back to the Future":
Dr. Emmet Brown: Then tell me, "future boy," who is president in the United States in 1985?
Marty McFly: Ronald Reagan.
Dr. Emmet Brown: Ronald Reagan? The actor?! Who's Vice President? Jerry Lewis?
Marty McFly: What?
Dr. Emmet Brown: I suppose Jane Wyman is the first lady! And Jack Benny is secretary of the treasury! I've had enough practical jokes for one evening! Good day, future boy!