Thursday, October 06, 2005

Quotes from Dopes

There is nothing more American than the Pledge of Allegiance and an acknowledgement of God is at the heart of our founding principles and is our nation’s motto."
Sen. Sam Brownback (whose name, when combined with "potential presidential candidate" sends chills down my spine), 9/16/05.

Sen. Brownback is evidently unaware that our nation's motto, up until 1956 -- about the same time "under God" was added to the Pledge of Allegiance -- was "E Pluribus Unum." Sen. Brownback is further unaware that the Pledge of Allegiance was written by a Socialist in 1892. Finally, Sen. Brownback likely does not notice that the term "God" appears nowhere in the Constitution, Bill of Rights, or even the Articles of Confederation. Admittedly, the phrase "Nature's God" does appear in the Declaration of Independence (which also posited that we are "endowed by our Creator" with certain unalienable rights, and the signers asked help from "divine Providence"), but that document, while important to American history, is not the operative document for our federal government.

Unsurprisingly, Sen. Brownback is a sponsor of the Constitution Restoration Act of 2005, which would prevent the Supreme Court from hearing any case that questions the acknowledgement by any governmental entity (or agent thereof) "of God as the sovereign source of law, liberty, or government." Sen. Brownback -- if we replaced "Allah" with "God", would that make our country sound any more like a theocracy?

I also get very tired of the argument (recently before the Supreme Court, and a probable cause of Sen. Brownback's senseless bill) that the Ten Commandments are the cornerstone of United States jurisprudence. Absent provisions against killing and stealing and lying (it is a bit of a stretch, but this could apply to perjury), there is nothing in the law that is based upon the commandments (I guess you could argue that "blue laws" are meant to keep the Sabbath holy). Best case: 40% of those tablets are actually in our laws. I went to law school, yet learned nothing about how it was illegal to covet anything of your neighbor. Coveting appears to be a wholly legal thing to do (although I don't know that your neighbor would appreciate you ogling his wife), as is telling your mother to bug off (or worse). Tell me again how this was the basis for our legal system?

If you want see some of the basis for our legal system (and the systems upon which we based our system), check out Hammurabi's Code of Laws from (shudder!) the Middle East (Babylonia, to be exact). Not only does it read like a criminal code, it actually gives penalties for wrongdoing, unlike the mere admonitions in the Ten Commandments. The Prologue talks about deities, but none are a Christian God.

To be fair, Sen. Brownback did vote for the McCain amendment that would ban use of torture by U.S. Armed Forces. That was good.

“It is a crucial time to run for office when rights and liberties are being eroded."
Roy Moore, former Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, 10/4/05, announcing his candidacy for governor of Alabama.

Never meeting a camera he did not like, former judge Moore has (against the explicit request of CNB) chosen to inflict himself upon the nice people of Alabama. My Ten Commandments diatribe actually applies more to this guy than it does Sen. Brownback.

I love the fact that this guy thinks that the civil rights being eroded are those of Christians. Hell, the gigantic object that took Moore down (the 5300-pound stone, not his hubris) went on a 15-state tour to underscore the fight for Christian rights. Yes, that ranks up there with the daily discrimination of white men - the never-ending discrimination against Christians. Why, I have difficulty even finding a church! Poor Christians must go underground to practice their beliefs! Wait -- that is in China (a.k.a. our "most favored nation").

As for Moore, some say he is the Achilles' heel of the GOP. If that is true (and I don't know that it is), then, to use a Christian phrase, the GOP will finally reap what it sows.