Supreme Court Ends Term with Immigration and Health Care Rulings

Supreme Court Ends Term with Immigration and Health Care Rulings


Week in Review July 7th 2012: LifeGuard Fired for Saving Life, Coach Banned for Donating too much Money

This past week had a lot of interesting story lines from the Supreme Court rulings to a coach being banned because he donated too much money to his school and a lifeguard fired for saving a life.

First I wanted to follow up on two of the Supreme Court Rulings. 

Here is what the ACLU released:

Defying many post-argument predictions, Chief Justice Roberts held that Congress had not exceeded its constitutional authority when it enacted the so-called individual mandate, requiring everyone either to purchase health insurance or make an additional payment on their federal taxes. Unfortunately, the Court’s decision does make it easier for states to reject federal dollars intended to extend Medicaid coverage.

“We welcome the Court’s decision, although we are disappointed by the Medicaid ruling,” Shapiro said. “Health care is a national problem and the national government must be empowered to address it. It would have been a major step backward for the Court to rule otherwise.”

The Court also reaffirmed the ultimate authority of the federal government to regulate immigration in Arizona v. United States when it struck down 3 provisions of Arizona’s S.B. 1070 on the theory that they were inconsistent with federal law. Significantly, however, the one challenged provision of S.B. 1070 that the Court did not strike down was the “show-me-your-papers” provision that has generated so much attention and controversy. The Court acknowledged that the provision raised legitimate concerns about racial profiling and detention but chose not to address them pending the outcome of further litigation.

“S.B. 1070 reeks of racial discrimination,” Shapiro said. “The Court’s unwillingness to confront that reality in this decision is disappointing and will have real human consequences. At the same time, the Court correctly anticipated that the discrimination issue can and will be litigated in other cases, including ongoing litigation brought by the ACLU and other civil rights groups.”

Here at we are excited that the California Senate passed an Anti-Arizona immigration bill that is headed to Gov. Jerry Browns Desk. He is expected to sign it.

The bill shields immigrants from being detained and deported for minor offenses. San Francisco Democratic Assemblyman Tom Ammiano  wrote AB1081 because he believes that a federal policy forcing officers to check immigration status wastes time and resources that could be used for other purposes. Another benefit of the bill is that it will build trust for those that want to report serious crimes but are concerned about being deported.

In other news this week, Coach Scott Cate the former Cottonwood High Coach has donated a generous amount of time and money to help students excel. In return, he was banned from being a part of the team. The reason is that the school district doesn't want a pay for play scenario occurring, however, in Cate's case he wanted nothing in return. Common sense should prevail and if, like in this case, the volunteer has nothing to gain the school should be allowed to file an individual waiver to allow them to receive the donations of both time and money.

Finally this week, Lifeguard Tomas Lopez was fired for sprinting 1,500 feet to save the life of a victim that was turning blue.  You can read more about this incident at the link above but the management company finally came to its senses and offered him his job back. He declined. As did others that were fired/quit because they also would have tried to save the life of someone that was in an area not technically protected by lifeguards. 

Another lifeguard told local tv station WPTV , "They sat me down and told me that my answer will determine if I get to keep my job or not," said Travis Madrid, 20. "When I told him I would do the same thing that Tommy did, they told me I was dismissed. I don't want to work for a company like that."

The owner of the aquatic management company is looking into management and determining if action will be taken against them for the firing.  

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