Judicial activism is a term pertaining to courts that create new laws based on their own personal preferences, their own ideologies, and their own assessments of what society needs rather than simply interpreting existing law.
Judicial activism also occurs when courts do not limit their rulings to the particular disputes that have been brought before them, but instead establish new laws to apply to issues that are much broader.
By their activism, judges usurp the powers that rightfully belong to elected legislators, and they circumvent the normal process by which laws are enacted. At its heart, judicial activism at the federal level rests upon the notion that the Constitution is an “evolving” or “living” document, malleable and impermanent and therefore needing to change with the times and with the needs of society – as those needs are perceived by particular judges.
Judicial Activism Reconsidered
By Thomas Sowell (Hoover Institution)
How to Spot Judicial Activism: Three Recent Examples
By Elizabeth Slattery (Heritage Foundation)
June 13, 2013
Judicial Activism for Liberal Dummies
February 2, 2011
Egypt’s Coup … and Ours
By Dennis Prager
July 9, 2013