Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Gorsuch: Yankee or Cowboy?

In the invisible battle occurring in The Yankee and Cowboy War, the Cowboys appear to have scored a nominee for the highest court in America.

Neil M. Gorsuch, a 1991 graduate of Harvard Law School, is President Donald Trump’s pick as the next justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Michael W. McConnell, who served with Judge Gorsuch on the appeals court and is currently a law professor at Stanford, was quoted by the New York Times as saying, "He’s a Westerner. There are so many cases that have to do with the West, and I also think the cultural sensibilities of the West are different. He’s an outdoorsman, and the Supreme Court needs a little bit more geographical diversity.”

Gorsuch on at least one occasion went fly fishing with Justice Scalia. Considering the person Gorsuch may replace on the Supreme Court, and the meaning of his name, this moment in history might seem more than coincidental.

The meaning of the English name Gorsuch derives from the habitational name from the hamlet of Gorsuch, Lancashire, earlier Gosefordsich, from Old English Gōsford = "goose ford" + sīc = "small stream." This name is first recorded as that of a manor near Ormskirk held by Walter de Gosefordsich in the late 13th century.

Neil is a masculine given name of Gaelic origin. The name is an Anglicization of the Irish Niall which is of disputed derivation. The Irish name may be derived from words meaning "cloud," "passionate," or "champion."

Neil Gorsuch is the author of  The Future of Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia, published in 2006 by Princeton University Press. The book argued that laws banning those practices should be retained. He is also one of 12 co-authors of The Law of Judicial Precedent, published by Thomson West in 2016.

While a student at Harvard Law School, Neil Gorsuch (near top, on left) was a member of the Lincoln’s Inn Society.

Lincoln's Inn Society was the only social club based at Harvard Law School, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Its name echoed Lincoln's Inn in London, which is one of the four Inns of Court where English barristers are based. Originally, Lincoln's Inn was known as Choate Inn of the International Legal Fraternity of Phi Delta Phi but became a private club when the Harvard Faculty voted to ban all fraternities in 1907. The Inn was a student-run refuge where students meet to relax after hard weeks of study. As a student-owned club, Lincoln's Inn is beyond university regulation. The Inn had a diverse and dynamic membership that was open to all members of the HLS community. Lincoln's Inn membership was once strictly male but it now admits women, and women have been President of the Society on numerous occasions. It has become especially popular with first-year students as a way to meet their classmates.
Some of the most distinguished members of the legal profession count themselves among the society's over 3,200 alumni, including U.S. Supreme Court Justices Stephen Breyer, Anthony Kennedy and David Souter, several U.S. Senators and Representatives, and managing partners from the nation’s most prestigious law firms. Source.

The Yankee and Cowboy War is available as a free download, here.

For more on this point-of-view updated during the 2016 campaign, see here.

So, was the eventual winner, Donald Trump, a Cowboy or Yankee?

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