Tag Archives: supreme court

CPAC: Death by a 1,000 Pens

[Part I – “CPAC: Brits Seek Independence (and so should we)[1] – highlighted Britain’s current rebellion against the European Union. Americans would do well to emulate their growing fervor for freedom.]

We have seen why so many Brits seek to flee the European Union, whose centralized, supranational government prevents Britain from protecting itself from the immigration crisis and terrorist threat contained therein.

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In the wake of the terrorist attack in Brussels (HQ of the EU), National Review noted the inescapable nexus between the E.U.’s policies and the fruit of those policies. The Editors wrote (emphasis added):

“In one part of the city reside EU bureaucrats who continue to promulgate their fanciful transnational ideals, increasingly against the evidence; in another part are roiling ghettos populated largely by Muslims from North Africa and the Middle East, many of whom have a very different vision for the future of Europe … A half century of effectively open borders, a refusal to require assimilation of immigrants into a robust notion of European culture, and an unyielding fidelity to multicultural pieties have resulted in cities fractured along ethnic lines and, as Brussels officials have admitted in the hours since Tuesday morning’s attack, overwhelmed by potential terror threats.”

Terrorism is not the only threat posed by edicts from the European Union. Freedom itself is at stake!

Prototype World Government

Steven Woolfe, a Member of the European Parliament, offered his insight into the dangers of a centralized government within a supranational context. Those insights are extremely relevant to the ongoing battle for power within the United States between the various branches of government as well as the struggle over federalism vs. statism. Hint: Liberty is losing.

According to Woolfe, the European Union has become a “super state in which control over the power of the laws is held in Brussels by unelected civil servants.” The bureaucratic state – unelected and unaccountable to the People – enjoys an ever-increasing degree of control over the lives of the citizens of the European Union.

I asked Woolfe how that came about. He explained, “After the Second World War, people quite rightly no longer wanted to have their children murdered in wars against each other. So they decided that they wanted to have an organization where countries come together to sort out their differences, a little bit like the United Nations.”

However, the founders of the European Union sought the abolition of “populist governments” who are elected by the people. To achieve that goal, they created “the European Union, in which the body called ‘The Commission,’ made of up civil servants, made the laws for the whole of Europe.”

Vaclav Klaus, former president of the Czech Republic,[2] highlighted the consequence of these “two interrelated phenomena” (emphasis added): “the European integration process on the one hand, and the evolution of the European economic and social system on the other – both of which have been undergoing a fundamental change in the context of the ‘brave new world’ of our permissive, anti-market, redistributive society, a society that has forgotten the ideas on which the greatness of Europe was built.”

Woolfe added, “What they did over a period of forty years, they slowly took powers, through different treaties, from each of the nation-states.” Woolfe contends, “The European Union is becoming like a colonialist empire. It’s almost like the prototype of a world government.”

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The Unbridled Power of Bureaucrats

Who runs this proto-colonialist empire? Bureaucrats!

As Woolfe put it, “Imagine the idea that civil servants – not elected politicians – can make your laws. Imagine that those laws can never be changed, can never be repealed. Imagine that government lobbyists and government affairs are the ones that talk to these civil servants and tell them what laws to initiate. That’s exactly what happens in the European Union. There is no people power. It’s very much bureaucratic power.”

Woolfe argues that the European Union is in embryonic form what globalists have always wanted to achieve. Woolfe almost sounds like a Bernie Sanders because he discerns a collusion between corporate Europe and the bureaucrats who make the laws.

Woolfe put it this way: “Many of us would argue that the fact that you have the large corporations who can game the system by basically negotiating their own laws with civil servants who then pass it down to the nation-states to enact. And if you’re a citizen in Germany who wants to have controlled borders, as you can see people flooding into Europe from all over the world in the migration crisis that we have, you’ve got no one who can stop it because you have no governments who can control it. It’s the EU that does it. If you want to have lower taxation, if you want to have less regulation, you can’t change your politicians to do that because it’s the civil servants – the Commission – that is making those laws.”

Woolfe concluded with a warning to America, one that is, sadly, decades too late. He queried, “And just think how dangerous that is to the United States if this idea crosses the Atlantic.”

Origins of the Statist Welfare State  

In the 1870s, German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck created the modern welfare state, with its byzantine bureaucracies and labyrinth of administrative laws. Bismarck’s model became the blueprint for Western European nations and also for progressives in the United States of America. At the heart of his model is centralized planning by elites made up of the self-anointed “best and brightest” who think that they know better than we do how to live our lives.

Philip Hamburger observed,[3] “This German theory would become the intellectual source of American administrative law. Thousands upon thousands of Americans studied administrative power in Germany, and what they learned there about administrative power became standard fare in American universities. At the same time, in the political sphere, American Progressives were becoming increasingly discontent with elected legislatures, and they increasingly embraced German theories of administration and defended the imposition of administrative law in America in terms of pragmatism and necessity.”

John Daniel Davidson has observed that “The father of American progressivism, Woodrow Wilson, saw this coming.” Wilson “thought the U.S. Constitution was outdated and that America needed a professional, Prussian-style administrative state, and that the chief hindrance to this in America was popular sovereignty.” Wilson believed that “expert administrators” were superior to the will of the People.

This is, of course, the antithesis of the individual liberty for which the Founding Fathers fought and the apotheosis for all those who oppose the Constitution and the framework of our Republic as envisioned by its Framers. Dennis Prager recently noted, “The size of the federal government and its far-reaching meddling in and control over Americans’ lives are the very thing America was founded to avoid.”

Either the rule of law by representative government or law by executive and administrative fiat will prevail. They cannot coexist. Peaceful coexistence is a myth.

Absolute Power Wielded by Statists

In contrast to statists who favor administrative law, our Founders and Framers opposed the exercise of absolute power. Hamburger noted, “They feared this extra-legal, supra-legal, and consolidated power because they knew from English history that such power could evade the law and override all legal rights.”

Consequently, “Americans established the Constitution to be the source of all government power and to bar any absolute power. Nonetheless, absolute power has come back to life in common law nations, including America.”

Administrative law, wrote Hamburger, is extra-legal, supra-legal, and consolidated. It is in defiance of our system of checks and balances which is expressly designed to limit and diffuse power. According to Hamburger (emphasis added):

  • “Administrative law is extra-legal in that it binds Americans not through law but through other mechanisms – not through statutes but through regulations – and not through the decisions of courts but through other adjudications.”
  • “It is supra-legal in that it requires judges to put aside their independent judgment and defer to administrative power as if it were above the law – which our judges do far more systematically than even the worst of 17th century English judges.”
  • “And it is consolidated in that it combines the three powers of government – legislative, executive, and judicial – in administrative agencies.”

Hamburger added, “Administrative adjudication evades almost all of the procedural rights guaranteed under the Constitution. It subjects Americans to adjudication without real judges, without juries, without grand juries, without full protection against self-incrimination, and so forth.”

Power of the Pen, Phone, and Judicial Activism

Jonah Goldberg concurs, writing, “The growth of the administrative state and the encroachment of federal law into every nook and cranny of local life has been a century-long project of the Left.”

What President Obama couldn’t get passed in Congress he has sought to enact through the power of his pen and his phone. He has bypassed Congress through unconstitutional executive actions on immigration and other matters. Further, he has politicized the IRS, EPA, HHS, Justice Department, Homeland Security, and other federal agencies to target his political foes and implement his contra-Congress agenda (the will of the People be damned!).

Even before the advent of Obama administration, Hillsdale College President Larry Arnn lamented[4] that “We live in a more liberated age, the age of bureaucratic government. Here rules abound in such profusion that they seem to overbear the laws of nature themselves. So it is with honoring the Constitution these days. We honor it more avidly than ever in the breach of its restraints, but at the same time we pay it the respect of mandatory, hectic, and empty observance. Except for our dishonoring of it, we have never honored it so much.”

Moreover, for decades, several activist Justices have tilted the Supreme Court away from the Constitution and toward unbridled power by non-elected bureaucrats. Goldberg noted, “in many respects the Supreme Court is now more powerful than the presidency. It’s certainly far, far, far less democratic. We appoint justices for life and many of their decisions cannot be overturned by the Congress, or the people, short of a constitutional convention.”

Death of Federalism and Freedom by the Stroke of a 1,000 Pens

Obamacare exemplifies and is representative of all that is wrong with administrative law. Case in point: The whole power of the federal government is intractably opposed to and wielded against charitable work performed by the Little Sisters of the Poor.

David French pointed out (emphasis added) “it’s important to understand that the Sisters are not challenging a law passed by Congress. Instead, the contraception mandate is a rule concocted by bureaucrats. When Congress passed Obamacare it intentionally passed the statute with a number of vague directives that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) interpreted and expanded through the regulatory rulemaking process. Thus, the Obamacare statute itself does not contain a contraceptive mandate. Instead, it merely requires employers to ‘provide coverage’ for ‘preventive services’ for women, including ‘preventive care.’”

These unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats have “exempted vast numbers of employers from its requirements – sometimes for mere convenience. It grandfathered existing plans that did not cover contraceptives, exempted small firms, and exempted ‘religious employers.’”

However, they define that term “so narrowly that it applied mainly to entities such as churches and synagogues, not to religious schools, hospitals, or charities – entities that are motivated by faith, often require employees to share the organization’s faith commitment, and ordinarily receive much the same level of religious-freedom protection as houses of worship.”

A Time for Choosing

Ronald Reagan’s famous 1964 speech, A Time for Choosing, should be revisited by all lovers of liberty. The 2016 election is of paramount importance and freedom itself hangs in the balance. Indeed, this election is about survival.[5] Will we elect a fraud and a mountebank, Donald Trump,[6] or an official Democrat candidate (Hillary Clinton[7] or Bernie Sanders) – statists all?

Or will we choose the only constitutional conservative in the race, Ted Cruz?[8]

[BrotherWatch has endorsed Ted Cruz[9] and the Cruz-Fiorina ticket.[10]]

Update: The current tyrannical nature of the Obama administration and its rule imposed by unelected bureaucrats to force the American people to adopt a radical agenda foisted on them is perfectly illustrated by the Justice Department’s edicts regarding transgender-friendly bathrooms. Rich Lowry calls it the Bathroom Putsch. Lowry decries “middling bureaucrats [who] impose their will on the nation,” writing, “The transgender edict is a perfect distillation of the Obama administration’s centralizing reflex, high-handed unilateral rule, and burning desire to push the boundaries of cultural change as far as practical in its remaining time in office.”

Update: The absurdity of the bureaucratic state is epitomized by federal, state and local governments who are currently waging a war on illegal lemonade stands run by children! Kevin Williamson notes, “We are ruled by power-mad buffoons.”

Update: Wesley J. Smith writes: “The political left loves the Bureaucratic State because it allows unelected and democratically unaccountable “experts” to be in control–for our own good, of course.” Smith exposes how the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is invading your privacy and intruding into your health care!

Endnotes:

[1]               See “CPAC: Brits Seek Independence (and so should we)” at http://wp.me/p4scHf-eT.

[2]               Vaclav Klaus, “The Crisis of the European Union: Causes and Significance,” Imprimis, Hillsdale College, July/August 2011, http://imprimis.hillsdale.edu/the-crisis-of-the-european-union-causes-and-significance/.

[3]               Philip Hamburger, “The History and Danger of Administrative Law,” Imprimis, Hillsdale College, September 2014, http://imprimis.hillsdale.edu/the-history-and-danger-of-administrative-law/.

[4]               Larry P. Arnn, “A Return to the Constitution,” Imprimis, Hillsdale College, November 2007, http://imprimis.hillsdale.edu/a-return-to-the-constitution/.

[5]               See “CPAC: This Election is About Survival” at http://wp.me/p4scHf-dO.

[6]               See “Coulter Admits Trump is a Fraud” at http://wp.me/p4jHFp-cf.

[7]               See “HRC: A Caricature of the Left” at http://wp.me/p4scHf-94.

[8]               See “CPAC: Ted Cruz in Control” at http://wp.me/p4scHf-8b.

[9]               See “BrotherWatch Endorses Ted Cruz” at http://wp.me/p4scHf-dw.

[10]             See “Cruz and Fiorina Are Dream Ticket” at http://wp.me/p4scHf-eQ.

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In Defense of Kim Davis and the Rule of Law

Some have likened Kim Davis to Rosa Parks. Others, to the Devil.

You will recall that Davis came under fire for putting her newfound faith into practice. Her refusal to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples has prompted foes to bring out the long knives.

The furor surrounding Kim Davis’ refusal to issue same-sex marriage licenses overlooks the obvious: Kim Davis is being faithful to both her conscience and the rule of law.

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How can that be, you ask? Let me explain.

Conscientious Objector

The Left cherishes civil disobedience when it is for a politically correct cause, but not when Christians stand up for traditional values and faithful adherence to biblical teaching or when they seek to defend the original intent of the Constitution.

Davis, a fairly recent convert to Christianity, cited her allegiance to her Christian faith as the overriding factor in her decision not to issue same-sex marriage licenses in Rowan County, KY.

As reported by Eagle Rising,

Davis “has declined to sign her name to marriage certificates that defy God’s natural design for the timeless institution and has requested, as a simple accommodation, that either her name be removed from the marriage licenses, thus eliminating her personalized acquiescence to the Supreme Court’s novel attempt to usurp God’s authority and redefine this cornerstone institution, or, alternatively, ‘to allow licenses to be issued by the chief executive of Rowan County or [by] developing a statewide, online marriage license process.’”

In other words, Davis does not want to be forced to affirm an action which she regards as illegal and immoral. At the time, any marriage licenses issued in her county would bear her name. This is very similar to the government forcing pastors and priests, rabbis and imams, to perform same-sex marriage contrary to their theological beliefs.

(An often overlooked aspect of compelling people to attend or ministers to perform a same-sex wedding is that one of the questions asked is, ‘Does anyone object to this wedding?’” Silence is assent.)

Bryan Fischer, from the American Family Association, explained why Christians should decline a gay wedding invitation: “For exactly the same reason a Christian baker should politely decline to bake a gay wedding cake. It sends a message of affirmation for something God has plainly condemned.” He added, “How much more the pastor sanctioning ungodly behavior?” Or, for that matter, government officials putting the imprimatur of the government on that behavior.

Davis was jailed for six days for doing the right thing. Since then, an accommodation was made: “the Office of County Clerk of Rowan County no longer puts Davis’s name on marriage licenses but instead uses ‘Rowan County’ where her name is supposed to go.”

Davis’s attorney, Matthew Staver of Liberty Counsel, issued the following statement: “We are pleased that Kim Davis has been ordered released. She can never recover the past six days of her life spent in an isolated jail cell, where she was incarcerated like a common criminal because of her conscience and religious convictions. She is now free to return to her family, her coworkers and the office where she has faithfully served for the past 27 years. We will continue to assist Kim and pursue the multiple appeals she has filed.”

Just because it’s “the law” does not make it either constitutional or right!

Allegiance to the Rule of Law

Not only is Davis following her conscience, she is also obeying the rule of law. As noted by Godfather Politics, “Davis took an oath to uphold the Kentucky Constitution which forbids same-sex marriage.”

That’s right, the current Kentucky Constitution forbids same-sex marriage.

As Eagle Rising reports:

“When she took her oath, United States law, the Kentucky Constitution and the Kentucky Revised Statutes all reflected the millennia-old definition of natural marriage: ‘Only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Kentucky.’”

“The Kentucky Legislature has yet to change this law one jot or tittle. Instead, five left-wing extremist lawyers in Washington, D.C., issued an opinion presuming to move the goalposts mid-game. Court opinions are not ‘the law of the land.’ Judges don’t make laws – only the legislature can do that. Kim Davis is not defying the law; she is upholding it as codified.”

Staver added: “Not long ago 75 percent of Kentuckians passed the state’s marriage amendment. Today a Christian is imprisoned for believing what the voters affirmed: marriage is between a man and a woman. Five people on the Supreme Court imposed their will on 320 million Americans and unleashed a torrent of assaults against people of faith. Kim Davis is the first victim of this tragedy.”

Seventy five percent of Kentucky voters approved Kentucky Constitutional Amendment 1, which explicitly states:

“Only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Kentucky. A legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized.”

Constitutional scholar Mark Levin asked an important question: “How can it possibly be that the law of the land that these judges swear to uphold, the law of the land under which they have whatever authority they have, can be abused by them and then we are forced to live by the law of the judiciary?”

Levin added, “The court had no business whatsoever getting into this issue of same-sex marriage. NONE!” The problem, according to Levin, is not with Ms. Davis, or the State Constitution, or the Federal Constitution. Rather, the problem stems from “five justices who acted outside the law, who violated the law, and now we have people saying ‘follow the rule of law.’”

Remember: judicial activism is, by definition, unconstitutional.

Opposition to Unjust Laws

Our Declaration of Independence clearly reserves for the People the right to oppose unjust laws and, even, an unjust government. It reads, “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.”

Godfather Politics provides “a biblical case” for a Christian opposing particular government edicts, using biblical examples, and examples from recent American judicial cases, to make its case.

  • Peter and the other disciples were imprisoned for preaching in the name of Jesus, contrary to civil law.
  • Hebrew midwives spared newborn males contrary to the edict of the Pharaoh.
  • Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed‑nego all forsook civil laws which were contrary to God’s law – at pain of death.
  • Justin Martyr and other second-century Christians risked execution rather than worship false gods commanded by the Emperor.
  • Judge Randall J. Hekman refused to permit a thirteen-year-old girl to get an abortion.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer is rightly renowned as a hero for his opposition to the Nazi regime and its usurpation of the German church and nation. He said, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”

The United States judiciary is increasingly acting in a tyrannical fashion, abrogating to itself constitutional prerogatives given only to the legislative branch. It is making law to achieve politically correct outcomes. When it does so, it’s rulings are themselves unconstitutional.

We are urged by World, “Even if you think Davis is wrong (I don’t), she is following her conscience before her God and that is all God requires in debatable matters: “Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind” (Romans 14:5).”

The writer adds: “Kim Davis evidently reasons from the civil disobedience of Peter and John, who ‘greatly annoyed’ (Acts 4:2) the powers that be to the point of getting themselves locked up. Upon release from jail they were warned by the judge (a striking parallel with Judge Bunning and the Davis case) not to violate law again, and they replied, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard’ (verses 19-20).”

Hypocrisy on the Left

The Left is blatantly hypocritical on these clear-cut issues. They condemn behaviors by others that they extol in themselves. Political correctness is the dividing line in all these cases.

Hypocrisy extends to the White House and Justice Department. “President Obama who refused to enforce the Federal Defense of Marriage Act because he thought it was unconstitutional.”

Texas Senator Ted Cruz asks: “Where is the call for the Mayor of San Francisco to resign for creating a sanctuary city resulting in the murder of American citizens by criminal illegal aliens welcomed by his lawlessness? Where is the call for Obama to resign after 6½ years of ignoring and defying our immigration laws, our welfare reform laws, even his own Obamacare? When the Mayor of San Francisco resigns, when President Obama resigns then we can talk about Kim Davis. But for every talking head who goes on TV and says this one county clerk in Kentucky is a threat to our liberty, what they are saying makes no sense.”

Victor David Hanson notes, “Hundreds of liberal sanctuary cities have announced that federal immigration law does not apply to them. That scary, neo-Confederate idea of legal nullification was sanctioned by the Obama administration – in a way it never would have been if a city had suspended the Endangered Species Act, emissions standards, or gun-control legislation.”

Godfather Politics also addressed this blatant hypocrisy:

“Davis’s arrest was met with cheers by same-sex marriage advocates who for some reason did not demand imprisonment of officials who lawlessly issued gay marriage licenses in clear contravention of state and federal laws. Take, for example, Democrat  who is currently the California lieutenant governor. Back in 2004, when gay marriage was banned under California state law, Newsom openly defied the law and used his power as the mayor of San Francisco to force taxpayer-funded government clerks to issue gay marriage licenses.”

“More than 3000 same-sex couples violated the law, and not one of them was fined or went to prison. This says nothing of the clerks who issued them marriage licenses.”

“Why wasn’t anything done to Tonya Parker, a black, openly lesbian Texas judge who refused ‘to conduct straight-couple marriage ceremonies in her state until same-sex couples can wed?’”

Davis is Not Alone

In the Old Testament, Elijah discovered that he was not alone – there were 7,000 other people who had refused to worship false idols. So, too, Kim Davis is not alone in standing up for truth and justice.

CNS News reported: “The belief of the Kentucky County Clerk, Ms. Davis, that the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell interpreting the Constitution as mandating the legalization of same-sex marriage in all American states is an egregious error and distortion of the Constitution is a belief that many other thoughtful persons share.  Her view that the federal government must defer to the states regarding the regulation of marriage is one that has very deep historical, legal, and practical roots.  Ms. Davis certainly has a constitutional right to express those views.  Although those views may irritate Judge Bunning, he cannot jail her for holding or expressing those views.”

In North Carolina, “More than 30 North Carolina magistrates so far have refused to perform weddings since the U.S. Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriages in all 50 states.”

Moreover, “In Oregon, Judge Vance Day has picked up the baton of resistance from Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis. While Davis sits in prison, Judge Day will continue the fight for both religious liberty and resistance to immorality. … The judge recently announced that he will not perform any same-sex marriage ceremonies. A spokesman for the judge said that ‘It’s an exercise of his religious freedom rights under the First Amendment.’”

Resign or Oppose?

For decades, the Left has sought to privatize religion in America, to remove it from the public square. They have falsely asserted a “wall of separation” between church and state and they have rewritten the First Amendment to uphold the concept of freedom from religion, not freedom of religion.

Bill Berkowitz accused Davis of conflating “her responsibilities as an elected official with her self-aggrandizing and idiosyncratic religious notions.” Funny, but those “idiosyncratic religious notions” were self-evident truths for centuries in America. Middle America still believes in them.

Time and time again, Christians – motivated by their faith – have spoken truth to power in the name of justice and freedom. Christians were at the forefront of the abolitionist movement. Christians led the Civil Rights Movement. Today, Christians are spearheading opposition to the countercultural values of the Sixties which have become enshrined in academia, the media, Hollywood, and the government, and they are resisting the unconstitutional, coercive efforts of those in authority who would subvert freedom and the rule of law.

Some argue that Davis is trying to force others to accept her beliefs, when, in reality, it is gay activists and their supporters who are seeking to force Christians (and others) to both accept and endorse the gay agenda, which includes normalization of the gay lifestyle and gay marriage. In reality, the progressively left-wing culture is forcing its beliefs on Christians.

Contrary to assertions by the Left, the Constitution is compatible with biblical precepts because the Bible informed the worldview of the Framers.

Regarding Davis, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy said, “Great respect, it seems to me, has to be given to people who resign rather than do something they view as morally wrong, in order to make a point. … the rule of law is that, as a public official in performing your legal duties, you are bound to enforce the law.”

Kennedy ignores reality: If all the godly people resign from public office, that would leave only ungodly people running the government.” Is that what we want?

American history is replete with examples of people standing up to illegal and immoral governance.

“Law of the Land”

In 1857, the Supreme Court ruled in the infamous Dred Scott case. Prior to and after its decision, abolitionists (led primarily by Christians) fought for the emancipation of slaves, rejecting this flagrantly immoral and unconstitutional decision. Likewise, Abraham Lincoln led the nation in opposition to this grievous injustice which was contrary to the letter and the spirit of the Constitution.

Abraham Lincoln fought a war in defiance of Dred Scott. The 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments were put in place specifically to overrule Dred Scott – which, liberals assert, was the “law of the land” at that time.

Are Roe v. Wade (abortion) and Obergefell v. Hodges (same-sex marriage) the “law of the land?” No! The Constitution is the law of the land (see Article VI of the Constitution).

Abraham Lincoln’s nuanced view of Supreme Court decisions is as incisive and salient now as then (emphasis added):

“[Supreme Court] decisions must be binding in any case upon the parties to a suit as to the object of that suit, while they are also entitled to very high respect and consideration in all parallel cases by all other departments of the Government. And while it is obviously possible that such decision may be erroneous in any given case, still the evil effect following it, being limited to that particular case, with the chance that it may be overruled and never become a precedent for other cases, can better be borne than could the evils of a different practice. At the same time, the candid citizen must confess that if the policy of the Government upon vital questions affecting the whole people is to be irrevocably fixed by decisions of the Supreme Court, the instant they are made in ordinary litigation between parties in personal actions the people will have ceased to be their own rulers, having to that extent practically resigned their Government into the hands of that eminent tribunal.”

As Ramesh Ponnuru noted, “the Lincoln administration did not attempt to undo the Supreme Court’s decision with regard to the parties in Dred Scott v. Sandford but also refused to speak or act as though it were correct. It recognized that blacks could be citizens regardless of that decision, and granted passports and patents accordingly.”

The Cost of Discipleship

Isn’t it ironic? The very people most outraged at Davis, accusing her of breaking the law, are the very ones who threaten wanton violence in the name of justice.

As reported by The Federalist Papers, Davis “and her husband have been the target of threats by those supporting gay marriage, including threats of rape, murder and arson.” Vulgarity and death threats populate Twitter and Facebook.

Speaking of these bullies, Davis said, “They told my husband they were going to burn us down while we slept in our home. He’s been told that he would be beaten up and tied up and made to watch them rape me. I have been told that gays should kill me.”

The Family Research Council recently honored Davis with its “Cost of Discipleship Award.”

FRC noted, “Kim isn’t ordering her office to stop issuing marriage licenses permanently. She’s simply asked that, as a Christian with strong religious convictions, her name no longer appear on them. And for that, she was jailed.”

Tearfully, Kim explained, “I am here before you this morning with a seemingly impossible choice, which I do not wish on any of my fellow Americans. My conscience or my freedom.” She choice the former.

Those who love liberty and the rule of law, you should support Davis, who is championing both. If it weren’t for people like Kim Davis, America might still be divided by slave and free states.

America – Lost in a Fog of Immorality and Tyranny

For centuries, our American forefathers fought for individual liberty, traditional morality, and a just government. Now, we are losing all three.

The Federalist No. 51 adroitly addresses the paradox of human liberty: “If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.”

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Therein lies the rub. Human beings – being human beings – desire liberty for themselves but succumb to the temptations of ruling tyrannically over others. Hence, our Founding Fathers deliberate framing of a government divided among three branches (executive, legislative, judicial), geographically (federal, state, local), and otherwise.

Now, we live in the worst of both worlds.

The human temptation to exceed boundaries has proceeded apace for generations and has finally succeeded in tearing down those limitations on government, empowering the government to place unlimited limitations upon the People.

This political role reversal has been accompanied by a similar reversal morally and spiritually.

Alexis de Tocqueville observed: “America is great because she is good. If America ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.” Rather than be good, Americans have chosen – or had foisted upon them – a government which enjoins non-traditional immorality and proclaims itself the arbiter of the People’s will, irrespective of the People’s actual interests.

Regarding the exaltation of gay marriage, David French observes, “This is the era of sexual liberty – the marriage of hedonism to meaning – and the establishment of a new civic religion. The black-robed priesthood has spoken. Will the church bow before their new masters?”

We now have a culture without restraints and a government without restraints!

The remainder of this column addresses the impact of recent Supreme Court decisions which, perhaps inalterably, will transform the lives of every American. Here are some highlights for your consideration:

Andrew C. McCarthy

“Roberts’s denial that the Court legislates is astonishing in its cynicism: In saving SCOTUScare, the chief justice not only usurped Congress’s law-writing role with gusto; he claimed the powers, first, to divine legislative purpose from its contradictory expression in legislative language, and, then, to manufacture legislative ambiguity as the pretext for twisting the language to serve the contrived purpose.”

“Already, an ocean of ink has been spilled analyzing, lauding, and bemoaning the Supreme Court’s work this week: a second life line tossed to SCOTUScare in just three years; the location of a heretofore unknown constitutional right to same-sex marriage almost a century-and-a-half after the adoption of the Fourteenth Amendment; and the refashioning of Congress’s Fair Housing Act to embrace legal academe’s loopy ‘disparate impact’ theory of inducing discrimination.”

“And it is not so much that they [the liberal justices] move in lockstep. It is that no one expects them to do anything but move in lockstep – not their fellow justices, not the political branches, and certainly not the commentariat, right or left.”

Kevin D. Williamson

“In the matter of the so-called Affordable Care Act, the Supreme Court ruled that the law must not say what it in fact does say because it would be better if it were not to say what it says and were to say something else instead. In the matter of same-sex marriage, the Supreme Court rules that the law must say what it does not say because it would be better if it were to say what it does not say instead of what it says. Which is to say, the Supreme Court has firmly established that it does not matter what the law says or does not say – what matters is what they want.”

Ben Shapiro

“The day after declaring Obamacare magically rewritten and that the lawsuits against discrimination in housing require no proof of actual discrimination, the Supreme Court found a unicorn in the 14th Amendment.”

“In the end, Kennedy’s case is simply that to be against same-sex marriage is bigotry: “It demeans gays and lesbians for the State to lock them out of a central institution of the Nation’s society.” With breathtaking arrogance, Kennedy concludes:”

“The limitation of marriage to opposite-sex couples may long have seemed natural and just, but its inconsistency with the central meaning of the fundamental right to marry is now manifest.”

[Shapiro continues:] “For thousands of years, everybody got it wrong. For hundreds of years, every American state got it wrong. Today, the vast majority of the planet’s population gets it wrong, and so do hundreds of millions of Americans. But their wrongness is ‘manifest.’ Why? Because Kennedy says so.”

“But in the idolatry of the left, we do not have the freedom to govern ourselves, nor even to rely the old God for our values and truths. Our betters will lead us. And they will grant any right they see fit, and reject any liberty they see fit, and redefine any term they see fit. Democracy in America did not die with jackboots; it died with the boredom and stupidity of an American people complicit in its demise, celebrating the circuses and the games provided by its new rulers, fat and happy in their submission. Let the parades be held; let the call go forth. By the power vested in them by, well, them, the Supreme Court and the left declare Americans husbands and husbands, wives and wives – and all of them slaves.”

[John S. Roberts provides salient quotes from our Founders on liberty and tyranny.]

Guilty of Being White

OK, I’m guilty. I’m white.

But why is being white a crime?

Some people claim that I must be a racist. Others believe that I benefit from “white privilege.” Still others assert that I owe them for being white. Some see my whiteness as “unbearable.”

When will we get past this obsession with race?

“Whites are Racist”

In the late 1990s, I was shocked to see a special issue of the Plain Truth magazine, the flagship publication of the Worldwide Church of God, which was devoted to the subject of race but incorporated every conceivable left-wing PC shibboleth imaginable. In big, bold letters, it stated: “Whites are racist and need to repent. Blacks are victims and need to forgive.

Did the writers, editors, and publisher not see the racism inherent in those sentences? Apparently not. Even after lengthy correspondence with the writers and publisher, not one word or concept was retracted.[1]

“Let’s Hope the Boston Marathon Bomber is a White American”

Last year, in the immediate aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing, David Sirota’s Salon headline caught everyone’s attention: “Let’s hope the Boston Marathon bomber is a white American.”[2] I will address Sirota’s flawed analysis at a later time. Meantime, ponder why he would “hope” the bomber would be 1) white and 2) American. Xenophilia? Self-hatred?

“The Unbearable Whiteness of CPAC”

Last month, another headline caught my eye: “The Unbearable Whiteness of CPAC.”[3] Why is “whiteness” “unbearable?” Although the writer condemned CPAC and the organizations gathered under the umbrella of its conference – roundly asserting the racist nature of the entire event – the writer offered no rationale for the evils of whiteness. Its claims of a conference filled with racists, bigots, and white nationalists were both hyperbolic and unsubstantiated. But, once again, why is whiteness “unbearable?”

Published by the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights (IREHR), the report’s opening paragraph read:

“For years, white nationalists found themselves on the outside looking in, faces pressed against the glass to get a glimpse at the movement happenings at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). But the times they are a changing. Not since Pat Buchanan’s racially-tinged insurgent campaign at the 1992 conference have white nationalists found a more hospitable environment in the halls of CPAC.”

White nationalists? Not at the conference I attended.

Its closing paragraph read:

“Therein lies the problem. You can’t passively brush bigotry aside. It must be confronted. White nationalists have found a voice and an audience in the conservative movement. Until CPAC organizers, and the leaders they put on-stage, publically stand up and wholeheartedly reject the politics of bigotry, panels on minority outreach will continue to be empty, and white nationalists will roam the halls looking for new recruits to join Ann Coulter’s death squads to enforce their hegemony.”

Clearly, IREHR disagrees with the conservative agenda. Fine. But it shouldn’t besmirch the intent or the character of conservatives just because it doesn’t agree with their ideas. IREHR provided a photo of the minority outreach panel showing an empty room. That room was later filled by an engaged audience. Timing is everything.

As for Coulter’s unquestionably over-the-top “death squads” joke (which never should have been said), a conservative “hegemony” would certainly never be enforced by conservative “death squads.”

Supreme Court on Affirmative Action

Earlier this week, the Supreme Court announced its decision in a case involving affirmative action.[4] The Court has recognized that the United States has moved on since the heyday of racial discrimination and it has upheld Michigan’s law which actually reiterated the Voting Rights Act of 1964. Justice Sotomayor was one of only two justices to dissent. Sotomayor’s dissent was particularly troubling in that she presumes racist motivation on the part of the Michigan electorate.

In her dissent, Sotomayor used the Orwellian technique of changing the terms of the debate. Her redefinition of the state constitution is stated and repeated in her dissent. She wrote: “Although the term ‘affirmative action’ is commonly used to describe colleges’ and universities’ use of race in crafting admissions policies, I instead use the term ‘race-sensitive admissions policies.’”

Sotomayor morphed the half-century-old (“commonly used”) term “affirmative action” into an ambiguous and easily-manipulated phrase, “race-sensitive admissions policies.”

Sotomayor continues:

“But instead, the majority of Michigan voters changed the rules in the middle of the game, reconfiguring the existing political process in Michigan in a manner that burdened racial minorities. They did so in the 2006 election by amending the Michigan Constitution to enact Art. I, §26, which provides in relevant part that Michigan’s public universities ‘shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting.’”

Once again, Michigan voters reaffirmed the Voting Rights Act of 1964. But Sotomayor views that as going backwards because she wants affirmative action (and racial preferences which ensued) to continue. By actually abiding by the legal and moral intent of the Voting Rights Act of 1964, racial preferences should be discarded. This is anathema for Sotomayor because she somehow believes a colorblind society is detrimental to minorities.

Sotomayor continues: “The race debate ‘must be resolved in constitutionally permissible ways.’” Having provided a lengthy and detailed history of civil rights in America, does Sotomayor now view the Voting Rights Act of 1964 unconstitutional? Doubtful. But that Act, legally and literally interpreted, is detrimental to her goals and its invocation by the Michigan electorate obstructs her purposes: racial preferences.

In all of these instances, an inordinate, unhealthy, and obsessive emphasis is placed on race. Sotomayor and others may eschew Rev. King’s historic exhortation to a color-blind society, and they may deny the foundational tenet of American jurisprudence (equal justice under the law), but by doing so they are ensuring the continuation of some level of racial animus in society and they are impeding the healing of the soul of America.

Why must outward skin color trump inward character?

Endnotes:

[1]               See Daniel Borchers, “Race Doesn’t Matter,” BrotherWatch, February 1998, http://www.brotherwatch.com/files/Race%20Does%20Not%20Matter%20-%20Part%201.pdf.

[2]               David Sirota, “Let’s hope the Boston Marathon bomber is a white American,” Salon, 4/16/13, http://www.salon.com/2013/04/16/lets_hope_the_boston_marathon_bomber_is_a_white_american/.

[3]               Devin Burghart, “The Unbearable Whiteness of CPAC,” IREHR, 3/21/14, http://www.irehr.org/issue-areas/race-racism-and-white-nationalism/item/549-unbearable-whiteness-of-cpac.

[4]               For the Supreme Court decision, see http://images.politico.com/global/2014/04/22/140422_scotus.html. For analysis of Sotomayor’s dissent, see Thomas Lifson, “Justice Sotomayor and the affirmative action bitter-enders have lost big time,” American Thinker, 4/23/14, http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2014/04/justice_sotomayor_and_the_affirmative_action_bitterenders_have_lost_bigtime.html.