A Prayer for Antonin Scalia

Several readers are apparently outraged that WC could be so callous as to speak ill of the dead. And in particular the recently deceased U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.


All right. In a modest effort to be a little more charitable, a little more forgiving, WC will offer a prayer for Antonin Scalia. Specifically, in light of the multifarious sins of the late Justice, and WC’s own atheism, WC offers the Possibly Proper Death Litany, from the late Roger Zelazny‘s Creatures of Light and Darkness:1

Insofar as I may be heard by anything, which may or may not care what I say, I ask, if it matters, that you be forgiven for anything you may have done or failed to do which requires forgiveness. Conversely, if not forgiveness but something else may be required to ensure any possible benefit for which you may be eligible after the destruction of your body, I ask that this, whatever it may be, be granted or withheld, as the case may be, in such a manner as to insure your receiving said benefit. I ask this in my capacity as your elected intermediary between yourself and that which may not be yourself, but which may have an interest in the matter of your receiving as much as it is possible for you to receive of this thing, and which may in some way be influenced by this ceremony. Amen.

It’s not much, 2 but it will have to do. Can we move on now?

  1. We don’t have a recording of Madrak the Mighty intoning this prayer. Instead, imagine this being read aloud by one of the mellifluous baritones among the televangelist circuit. 
  2. “Hallowed be thy name, if a name thou hast and any desire to see it hallowed.” 

4 thoughts on “A Prayer for Antonin Scalia

  1. Good for you, WC.
    It will be good to have no more Scalia insults directed at his colleagues in opinions where they disagree. He was unique in his petulant, disgraceful conduct as a jurist by expressing himself inappropriately when he was at odds with colleagues with whom he disagreed. As far as I’m concerned, he was an embarrassment to the judiciary.
    It is interesting, to say the least, to observe those who lionize him now and when he existed, but they don’t seem to be consistent with what he said were his values. Pres. Obama rightly called out the “originalists” and the “textualists” who assert that the president should leave this apptmt to the next president. And the constitution uses “shall” in saying what he must do regarding this vacancy. A true Scalia devotee would not be citing “tradition” or other extra-textual pseudo-authority as a basis to avoid “shall appoint”, but that is what they are doing now.
    Presently there is criticism of the President for not attending the funeral Saturday, for he will instead pay respects tomorrow at the court. Interesting that there are those who seem to have strong notions about how the president should honor Scalia like that, but Scalia pointedly skipped State of the Union addresses by the president. It certainly was not because he was not political; in fact, he is appreciated by his fans for unmistakably political conduct in loudly announcing his views on controversial topics. He was explicit in acknowledging that he would not give up his seat to permit his replacement to be appointed by a president whose views diverged too much from his own. It was clear he had an agenda, and he sought to protect it by holding on for as long as he could to protect the agenda he had pursued on the court.
    Let’s hope that when the intensity dies down from his fans, the more detached perspective will begin to set in to, first, suppress any notion that his style of insult should be seen any longer in American judicial writing, and, second, perhaps greater attention to the array of improper language he directed at colleagues so that Americans can hopefully get a better sense of who this person truly was.
    The American judicial system will be much better without him. In that sense, he leaves the world a better place, as the saying goes. (one of the most delightfully ambiguous expressions that are out there)

    Paul Eaglin

  2. Scalia was a blot on the landscape. I hope he rests in peace because he did a lot of things as a justice to make sure others couldn’t rest in this life.

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