The Founders wrote "the law of nations" into the document; the far right wants to read it out
Not long ago, Rep. Sandy Adams (R-FL) introduced a bill to forbid the Supreme Court from ever citing or using any precedent from international law. In the conservative Washington Times, Adams explained:
The Constitution laid the foundation for our nation's judicial system, and allowing foreign law to supersede it in any capacity leads to its erosion. Not only is using international precedent a transparent disregard for the Constitution, but it could be used to advance a judge's personal political agenda over the best interests of the nation.
Adams said she was outraged that in recent years, the Court has discussed international law and human rights norms in three decisions: Atkins v. Virginia, which held that executing the mentally retarded violates the Constitution; Roper v. Simmons, which held that executing adults for crimes they committed as children violates the Constitution; and (most importantly) Lawrence v. Texas, which held that jailing competent adults for consensual private sex with members of the same sex violates the Constitution.
Many conservatives loathe any limitation on the death penalty; they also loathe recognition of the basic human rights of gay men and lesbians. If courts are according the right to life to the retarded or to juveniles -- if they are according any measure of equality to gay people -- foreigners must be to blame. Judges must be forced to stop their ears to their strange, seductive foreignness.