Chief Justice John Roberts was in a jocular mood on Wednesday when he uttered “OK Boomer” during oral arguments.
The case is regarding an employee of the Department of Veterans Affairs who is alleging gender and age discrimination. The plaintiff, Norris Babb, is also claiming the DVA “subjected her to a hostile work environment.”
Roberts used the phrase in a theoretical question on age discrimination.
The phrase has become ubiquitous as of late, as Gen X types and millennials use it on social media and otherwise to reference the 1946-1964 baby boom generation of children of WWII vets.
Gen Xers, who demographically cross with Boomers during the last three years of the cycle, 1961-1964, like myself are particularly fond of the dig as it contrasts us from the hideous, self-absorbed, generally left-wing at least when they were young, and still annoying teenage hippie cohorts of the late 1960s.
By the time another decade had rolled around and those Gen Xers born in the early 60s had come of late adolescent age, hippie music had been replaced by new wave, male long hair and filthy hippie rags by Ralph Lauren topped off with classic haircuts, and McGovernesque politics with the Reagan campaign.
Roberts, who seems to have escaped the excesses of his generation and emerged with his brain and wit intact, as did the smarter of the boomer bunch, is known to have a decent sense of humor.
He will need it next week when he has to sit through days of Dem absurdities.
Roberts will be fulfilling his constitutional duty to preside over the Senate trials as the head jurist, a role only two other chief justices have played.
It will be interesting to see Roberts participate in this capacity, given his “balls-and-strikes” mentality of judicial execution and Trump’s past comments calling Roberts a “disaster.”
We’ll see how objective the Chief Justice plays his role. Given his history on The Court, I think we can say he will play fairly. While notably a conservative-leaning interpreter of the Constitution, he hasn’t always ruled in favor of how conservatives would like.
Roberts’ notorious ruling in “favor” of Obamacare in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, had many conservatives up in arms, though his ruling was hardly in actual favor of the law and more so a technicality.