from Tea Party Patriots
January 22, 2017
There was an article this week about controversies in Maryland over statues of Roger Taney, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court who wrote the opinion in the notorious Dred Scott case.
Many consider the 1857 case the worst decision the Supreme Court ever made. It is remembered for upholding slavery. One part of the decision held that descendants of African slaves were not citizens and thus had no standing to sue in court. It went on to say that states that had abolished slavery could not free any slaves that made it to their territory because that would deprive slaveholders of their property rights. Dred Scott and his family were freed shortly after the decision anyway, but he died just 18 months later.
A statue of Chief Justice Taney sits in front of the Maryland State House in Annapolis. It’s about double life-size. Taney is seated, with his arm resting on a book inscribed ‘The Constitution’. A bill was introduced last year to remove the statue and put it in storage. An architect in Annapolis, however, has proposed turning it into a teachable moment by placing a statue of Frederick Douglass, another Marylander, eyeball-to-eyeball with Taney. Douglass blasted the Dred Scott decision the day it came down. Next year is the 200th anniversary of Douglass’ birth.
Likenesses of Taney are also causing controversies in Baltimore and Frederick, Maryland. Another bust of Taney is in the Great Hall of the United States Supreme Court in Washington.
“Controversy Dogs a Late Chief Justice's Monument”
Wikipedia page on the Dred Scott decision