[Our guest essayist, Dr. Mark DeVine, is associate professor of history and doctrine at Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Alabama. He is the author of Bonhoeffer Speaks Today: Following Jesus at All Costs.]
Wayne Grudem’s defense of a vote for Trump evoked an avalanche of repudiation, a veritable beat down by an array of theologically likeminded, #NeverTrump “friends.” A vote for Trump would be “wicked,” they said. It would violate Christian conscience and stain one’s reputation. We’ll come back to Grudem and his critics, but first let’s revisit a few chapters from the extraordinary life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, pastor, theologian, and conspirator to assassinate Adolf Hitler.
A few days before his departure from New York City Bonhoeffer wrote to Reinhold Niebuhr:
“. . . I have had time to think and to pray about my situation and that of my nation and to have God’s will for me clarified. I have come to the conclusion that I have made a mistake in coming to America. I must live through this difficult period of our national history with the Christian people of Germany. I will have no right to participate in the reconstruction of Christian life in Germany after the war if I do not share the trials of this time with my people. . . . Christians in Germany will face the terrible alternative of either willing the defeat of their nation in order that Christian civilization may survive, or willing the victory of their nation and thereby destroying our civilization. I know which of these alternatives I must choose; but I cannot make that choice in security . . .”
Key features of Bonhoeffer’s thinking would survive all the way to the gallows of Flossenburg concentration camp: that the will of God is discerned for a Christian, particularly in what he called “boundary situations,” only through intense, sustained prayer and reflection upon the word of God; that obedience in such situations more often leads disciples into, not away from, suffering—“When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.” His realization that, however global one’s human and Christian identity, one’s national identity also counts and must impinge upon pursuit of the will of God and discernment of “true patriotism.”
But Bonhoeffer’s stated motive for the return to Germany weakened with time, namely the quest to salvage his moral standing in the eyes of others for the sake of future usefulness. The path from pacifist to conspirator to double agent to encourager and even volunteer to commit tyranticide forced Bonhoeffer to let go of such motives and hopes. Obedience to the will of God required decision after decision Bonhoeffer expected to so stain his reputation, so compromise his character in the eyes of others, as to disqualify him from the sort of future constructive role he once thought his return might make possible.
In a 1942 Christmas letter prepared for fellow conspirators Hans von Dohnanyi, Hans Oster, and Eberhard Bethge, Bonhoeffer wrote:
“We have been the silent witnesses of evil deeds; we have been drenched by many storms; we have learnt the arts of equivocation and pretense; experience has made us suspicious of others and kept us from being truthful and open; intolerable conflicts have worn us down and even made us cynical. Are we still of any use?”
Should he survive, Bonhoeffer expected his ordination as a minister of the word of God would be stripped from him. He had, in a thousand ways, knowingly dirtied his hands in the conspiracy—even to the point of volunteering to carry a bomb to Hitler.
Not that Bonhoeffer came to despise his own moral “reputation” as worthless or indifferent (adiaphora). His immersion in the Psalms taught him the crucial importance of reputation, both to God and to his children. The same Psalms where “putting to shame,” and “being put to shame” figure repeatedly and prominently as central preoccupations, also teach that the one committed to doing God’s will cannot secure and must not attempt to secure his own reputation himself. The obedient servant looks to his master alone for vindication:
Then I shall not be put to shame, having fixed my eyes on all your commandments (Psalm 119:6)
Being put to shame is the opposite of being blessed. My life is put to shame when that which I relied upon breaks apart. For then I have nothing left that could give my life meaning and due, nothing to which I could appeal. My life becomes a mockery and shames me. I relied upon my own strength, and I became weak and sick. I counted on my property, and it was taken from me overnight. I trusted in reputation and power, and fell deep. I took pleasure in my honesty, and was overcome by sin. In the same way anyone’s life can be put to shame if they consider “mere flesh their strength” (Jer. 17:5). But if my gaze seeks not people, honors, and riches in the world but God’s commandments alone, then I will not be put to shame. For God’s commandments cannot break apart because God himself holds on to them and with them everyone who looks to them. I will never have to be ashamed of heeding God’s commandments. . . . Even if the world’s judgment is against me, God’s judgment speaks for me. I look at God’s commandments when I base my decisions neither on other people nor even my own thoughts or experiences, but rather when I ask ever anew, even if contrary to my pious thoughts and experiences, for what God commands me. I can be put to shame even by my most pious decisions and ways but never by God’s commandment. God alone, not my piety, will preserve me from shame and dishonor.
And how does the Christian discern this commandment of God?
“. . . only the entire richness of God’s commandments can guide me safely through life. Thus I can be certain that there is no situation in my life for which God’s word would not give me the necessary advice. But serious attention, tireless asking, and learning are necessary to recognize the right commandment and to recognize the inexhaustible kindness of God in all his commandments. The harder the world confronts and judges me, the more dire and miserable my way becomes, the firmer my gaze must stay directed toward God’s commandments . . . .”
We know what came to “trump!” other considerations as Bonhoeffer tirelessly asked of God’s word for the right commandment of God for him. Amid rising demands for an Aryan Clause in the church, this urgent and overriding concern emerges perhaps most vividly in an address delivered to a group of pastors in 1933. Here the 27-year-old Bonhoeffer identified “three possible ways in which the church can act toward the state.” The third way “is not just to bandage the victims under the wheel, but to jam a spoke in the wheel itself.”
The overriding concern? Not one’s reputation, not making some sort of statement about one’s own integrity, but doing what one could to help others, to serve others, to reduce or prevent the suffering of others. In Jesus Christ, for the Lutheran Bonhoeffer, God shows himself as the God who is for us (pro nobis), making his Son “the man for others,” and his followers servants of those same “others” in his name.
Bonhoeffer bemoaned as scandalous the spectacle of church leaders who, though poised to pop the Champagne corks to celebrate Hitler’s arrest or assassination from a safe distance, were unwilling to soil their own consciences or their own hands to see the deeds done themselves. They wanted the spoke hurled, just not by them:
“The man with a conscience fights a lonely battle against the overwhelming forces of inescapable situations which demand decisions. . . . Some who seek to escape from taking a stand publicly find a place of refuge in private virtuousness. Such a man does not steal. He does not commit murder. He does not commit adultery. Within the limits of his powers he does good. He must be blind and deaf to the wrongs which surround him. It is only at the price of an act of self-deception that he can safeguard his private blamelessness against contamination through responsible action in the world. Whatever he may do, that which he omits to do will give him no peace. Either this disquiet will destroy him or he will become the most hypocritical of Pharisees.”
Between the 1933 address and one of the last letters penned at Tegel prison 11 years later, Bonhoeffer’s prizing of righteous action over clean conscience-fixated recoil into an ostensibly reputation-preserving and character-protecting safe space deepened.
I thought I could acquire faith by trying to live a holy life, or something like it. I suppose I wrote The Cost of Discipleship as the end of that path. Today I can see the dangers of that book . . . . .
“I discovered later, and am still discovering right up to this moment, that it is only by living completely in this world that one learns to have faith. One must completely abandon any attempt to make something of oneself, whether it be a saint, or a converted sinner, or a churchman . . ., a righteous man or an unrighteous one, . . . By this-worldliness I mean living unreservedly in life’s duties, problems, successes and failures, experiences and perplexities. In doing so we throw ourselves completely into the arms of God, taking seriously, not our own sufferings, but those of God in the world . . . .”
For Bonhoeffer, when the suffering of others is at stake, virtue acts to stop, prevent, or mitigate the suffering. It acts not for itself but in service to others, even if such service threatens to soil ones ostensibly “clean hands,” or jeopardizes one’s present or potential future reputation, or even one’s life. It does not understand sanctification as a cooperative effort between believers and God to make one clean. “Already you are clean because of the word I have spoken to you” (John 15:3). It understands sanctification as a divine setting apart of justified sinners for holy use—to serve others. Sanctifying of oneself means yielding to the prior and fundamental divine sanctification of oneself for such use.
For Bonhoeffer, Christian virtue does not turn opportunities for such service into occasions for self-display, self-expression, or self-protection. It does not shrink back from the moral cesspool that is this world and settle for some lesser and less urgent cause fixated on oneself rather than others.
Could such virtue in 2016 treat as less urgent the potential harm a sitting president of the United States might unleash upon hundreds of millions around the globe than some chance to display the purity of its conservative or liberal credentials or to teach a political party a lesson by staying home on election day or to cast a protest vote for a candidate who cannot win? No.
I see, and Grudem too seems to see, two wheels rolling towards hundreds of millions of actual people, each bound to discharge its own unique mix of help and harm. He has one spoke to jam into one wheel and perhaps prevent deliverance of one package of potential hurt to others. Retreat from that binary choice offers no platform of superior sanctity on which to preen, no pulpit from which to educate others, no paddle with which to spank a political party, and certainly no ostensibly “spiritual” refuge within which to pursue personal or private virtuousness. Others’ lives are in the path of two wheels, one of which shall roll over them. The names of these wheels are Trump and Hillary. No other names and no other options enter in. Surely Election Day 2016 beckons each voting age American follower of Jesus Christ to jam his or her one spoke into one of those two wheels.
Mark DeVine is associate professor of history and doctrine at Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Alabama. He is the author of Bonhoeffer Speaks Today: Following Jesus at All Costs.
 Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Works, Volume 15 (Minneapolis: Fortress, 2012), p. 210
 Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship.
 Ten Years After, employed as the Prologue to Letters & Papers From Prison: New Greatly Enlarged Edition, by Dietrich Bonhoeffer (New York, Macmillan, 1971), p. 16
 Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, Volume 15 (Minneapolis: Fortress, 2012), pp. 507-508.
 Ibid, p. 508.
 Dietrich Bonhoeffer, A Testament to Freedom: The Essential Writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Geoffrey B. Kelly and F. Burton Nelson eds. (San Francisco: HarperSanfrancisco, 1995),p. 132
 Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Ethics (New York: Touchstone, 1995), pp. 68-69.
 Bonhoeffer, Letters & Papers, pp. 369-370.
President of the United States and self-appointed lawyer for the Orlando Islamic Terrorist (I refuse to name him and I used Islamic instead of Islamist intentionally. Let’s quit pretending the Koran and Hadith don’t say what they say) today mocked the notion that identifying radical Islamist terrorists as such makes any difference. Lawyer Obama said labeling the terrorists as such won’t stop them from hating us because we wrongfully hate them. El Rushbo mentioned how Democrats seem to revert to lawyer mode after every terrorist attack to offer excuses for the terrorists. DeVine Law has since 9/11/2001 asked how paid agents of terrorists would act any differently than Democrats do for free?
Of course, Obama refuses to accurately name the enemy because then when he doesn’t do what he can to defeat them and protect us, he would be exposed as weak, cowardly or worse, not of a mind to protect the country he serves and is sworn to defend. He would rather blame guns, bitter Christian clingers to same etc. He lives to fundamentally transform the greatest nation in history, by far, all he can before he leaves office. Waging war against a named enemy conflicts with the notion that the US is the main evil on earth. The Democrats’ notion.
This reminds of 1998 when I, still a Democrat two years before my conversion, was thrilled when President Bill Clinton promised to wage war against Al Qaeda after they felled two of our embassies in Africa. Usama bin Laden later said that when the US didn’t invade Afghanistan after that he finally concluded that he would attack the US homeland of the “weak horse”. Having left Saddam Hussein in power and allowing him to taunt us and the U.N. had inspired his terrorists attacks on us prior to 9/11.
Meanwhile, after 9/11 Citizen Bill asked, before the rubble of the Towers had cooled:
Why do they hate us?
Democrats refuse to believe what the terrorists say and what the Koran and Hadith command them to do. Kill the infidel. But we are “Islamophobic”? Question: Were there ever people identified as “Nazi-phobic”? We think not, but sadly the Democrats not naked John F. Kennedy did similarly mock fear of an Evil Empire ten times more murderous than Hitler’s, with there appeasement of the worldwide Communism in the USSR, Red China and Cuba.
This while the Bill and Hillary Clinton Foundation was accepting millions from Sharia Law nations where gays are pushed off buildings for being illegally gay.
Obama and the Democrats blame Orlando, 9/11 and everything in between of Christians (we “punish” gays by treating them in our hospitals) and America. We actually might agree with Obama that “America” shares responsibility for radicalizing the Orlando Islamic Terrorist with his radical Muslim father, radical Muslim mosque, ISIS and other Islamic terrorist groups. But not by anti-gay, Southern White-male Christians. No. The radicalization in this country is done by Obama’s Democrat Party academia, press and media arms which teach children in grammar school through college to hate America, much as Obama’ mother, dreams from his father, grandparents, Choom Gang, Communist Frank Marshall Davis, the (always said in hushed reverential tones) “Reverend” Louis Farrakhan, Rev. Jeremiah “G-Damn America Wright, and other radical, liberal Democrat mentors taught him.
Obama says that the most beautiful sound on earth is the (creepy to us) call to morning prayer in Islam. Reminds eerily of the love of smell of napalm in the morning to me or the modern version, i.e. what Pulse smelled like last Sunday morning. Meanwhile the anodyne War on Extremism has produced: Obama surrendered Iraq to ISIS and gave Iran $150B. Attorney General Lynch warned that informants after the San Bernadino Islamic terrorist attack that they could be charged with a hate crime for bigotry against Muslims. I’m sure that helped get intel to prevent future Orlandos…..not.
Fellow Americans, this is who Democrats nominate and elect. You are not required to participate. Their appeasement can be Trumped.
“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson
Iowa Republican presidential caucuses winner Ted Cruz was born in Canada. His mother was an American, having been born in the United States, who had never renounced her American citizenship. His father was born in Cuba.
Donald Trump, loser in Iowa (but winner in New Hampshire and leading the polls in South Carolina prior to Saturday’s pivotal primary), began trumpeting his latest justification for his election before he lost in Iowa: Ted Cruz was born in Canada. Democrats will take Cruz to court, so vote for The Donald.
The evidence that Barack Hussein Obama was born in Hawaii was always clear to most given the birth announcement in a Honolulu newspaper, but even had the 44th president been born in Kenya, he would still have likely been deemed eligible for the Chief Executive’s office.
Article 3, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution provides that:
No person except a natural born citizen, or a citizen of the United States, at the time of the adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the office of President; neither shall any person be eligible to that office who shall not have attained to the age of thirty five years, and been fourteen Years a resident within the United States.
The U.S. Supreme Court has never been ruled upon the meaning of the phrase “natural born” (which occurs no where else in the founding document) and in most conceivable lawsuit-challenge contexts would likely deem the issue a “political question” and defer the issue to the Electoral College and/or the Congress when they approve or disapprove electoral votes after receipt from the states.
But, what if a state executive official empowered to approve or disapprove candidates for inclusion on primary, caucus or general election ballots were to rule Ted Cruz as not natural born and thus ineligible to serve as President of the United States? In that instance, the nation’s highest court may have to interject itself, much as in the 2000 Florida recount.
Constitutional attorney Andrew McCarthy provides needed insight including from a 2015 Harvard Law Review article, “On the Meaning of ‘Natural Born Citizen,” [by] Neal Katyal and Paul Clement (former Solicitors-General in, respectively, the Obama and George W. Bush admininistrations), [in which they] explain that:
British law explicitly used the term “natural born” to describe children born outside the British empire to parents who were subjects of the Crown. Such children were deemed British by birth, “Subjects … to all Intents, Constructions and Purposes whatsoever.” The Constitution’s invocation of “natural born citizen” incorporates this principle of citizenship derived from parentage. That this is the original meaning is obvious from the Naturalization Act of 1790. It was enacted by the first Congress, which included several of the framers, and signed into law by President George Washington, who had presided over the constitutional convention. The Act provided that children born outside the United States to American citizens were “natural born” U.S. citizens at birth, “Provided, That the right of citizenship shall not descend to persons whose fathers have never been resident in the United States.”
It is likely, given 14th Amendment Equal Protection clause jurisprudence that residency would be applied to either parent, but in the case of Ted Cruz, his father has resided in the United States for many years.
Birthers also mistakenly cite Section 1 of the 14th Amendment to restrict the definition of “natural born” and “citizenship” even though the clause never mention the former and doesn’t purport to restrict the latter:
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside.
There was no question at the time of the ratification of the Constitution nor of any of the amendments that the children of Americans born abroad were also American citizens at birth. What the post-Civil War 14th Amendment sought to make clear was that former slaves born in United States were citizens equal to non-slave citizens.
So maybe Donald Trump would do better to return to the issues of building of a border security wall that would save us so much in money now spent to house, educate and medicate illegal aliens that Mexico would in effect “pay for it” and ending the cheap labor/Chamber of Commerce Free trade absolutism policy? We think so.
“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson
A new city was born after last year’s referendum in the Peach State and it will elect its first mayor and city council this coming March. Since before the War Between the States, the area roughly 15 miles east of Atlanta has been known as Tucker. It was developed by a Scottish entrepreneur who settled there after fighting in the Indian wars in the West.
Now, 200 years later comes an entrepreneur from the West, Kansas to be specific, to Tucker with that same entrepreneurial spirit, who is running for a seat on the first city council for the new City of Tucker, Georgia.
Susan Wood, after starring in high school sports, matriculating at Kansas State University including serving on the Student Senate, and working in the real estate industry in Atlanta, found her way to Tucker during the depths of the post-2008 Housing Bust to manage and later become a partner/owner of the Comeback Bar & Grill. First named Barlows, it took over where even a Taco Mac (the famously successful Atlanta chain) had failed. Flanigans and other Tucker staples failed.
But thanks to Wood’s meticulous attention to product and the needs and wants of her customers and employees, Comeback weathered the economic storms. Now she wants to bring that same frugality and attention to service to the first city government in her adopted home of Tucker, specifically, District 2, Post 2.
Her platform is to first do no harm to the existing business environment in Tucker by raising taxes or other costs of doing business via regulation and fees. Her vision is for Tucker to be the best environment for business in DeKalb County, Atlanta Metro and the state of Georgia.
We think her lack of prior political experience, especially in this political year, should be an asset as she brings a fresh approach from the private sector where she and others struggled to make ends meet while creating jobs. She has succeeded with her conservative approach to business and we think her enthusiasm and history of success could convince voters to elect her to look after their interests in the new city government.
“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson
DeVine Law Gamecock’s oracle alter ego remains on sabbatical on Portugal’s offshore islands where he has resided since retiring from political predictions after the 2012 debacle. He refuses to engage in imagining the electoral machinations of a people that would re-hire an epic economic and national security failure. Cockstradamus also continues to leave paranoid schizophrenics to medical doctors. Yours truly remains roosted atop Stone Mountain of Georgia and together we share our plans for the new Leap Year aka the latest chance to not put a Democrat in the Oval Office.
Our number one resolution is to never apologize for the fact that Donald Trump leads GOP presidential nomination polls until the Democratic Party apologizes for ever nominating Barack Obama for president. He and his party have decimated the military; prevented all but bankers, the 1%, their cronies, and Mexican drug mules from bailing themselves out since the Housing Bust; persecuted Christians and conservatives via Lois Lerner’s IRS; appeased the Terror State of Iran that Jimmy carter created; and fundamentally transformed the only nation in the history of the world that didn’t need to be so transformed.
Number two, reject the notion that there is any silent conservative majority in the United States or even in the Republican Party.
Three, work to make sure that the most electable non-Democrat is elected president and hope that he or she has the courage to fix a few things Democrats and their enablers in the establishment GOP and wrecked, e.g. job-killing Obamacare etc.
Four, continue watching less TV, no liberal political TV I know what they are going to say before they say it), no commercials, no political arguing, and less PC ESPN non-live game programs.
Five, tip my bartenders more.
Six, remind Democrats to vote on Wednesday.
Seven, make no more resolutions until 2017.
Joint (lest Cockstradamus be further emasculated) predictions: Carolina Panthers win their first Super Bowl, Clemson wins the CFP, Lebron James leads Cleveland Cavaliers to their first NBA championship, Atlanta Braves win 60+ games, Little E wins Sprint Cup, and Ted Cruz is elected President of the United States.
“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson
Today mark’s the 74th anniversary of the attack on the U.S. Navy by Imperial Japan at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, shortly after which President Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared December 7, 1941 a “Day of Infamy” and sought and got a congressional Declaration of War seeking “unconditional surrender.”
FDR’s (and later President Harry S. Truman’s) America mobilized and defeated not just Japan, but Hitler’s NAZI AXIS powers as well.
Over fourteen years ago, Islamist terrorists attacked the United States in New York City and Washington, D.C. on September 11, 2001, shortly after which President George W. Bush stood on the rubble that had been the Twin Towers and declared:
“I can hear you!” he declared. “The rest of the world hears you! And the people – and the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon.”
They soon heard President Bush seek and get a bi-partisan Authorization to Use Military Force (essentially a declaration of war against al Qaeda, affiliates and any entity giving them aid and comfort). After Shock & Awe, Usama bin Laden was soon driven from his safe haven in Afghanistan; the Taliban was removed from power; Saddam Hussein was replaced in Iraq by a regime friendly to the U.S.; Libya unilaterally surrendered its WMD; intel from waterboarding and other enhanced interrogation techniques used on illegal enemy combatants captured in Iraq and elsewhere was used to locate and capture UBL; and tens of thousands of terrorists trained to attack the U.S. homeland were killed in Afghanistan and Iraq.
There has been no second 9/11 thanks mostly to these and other actions.
Last month, the Islamic State that arose in an Iraq abandoned by President Barack Obama as part of his campaign promise to “end wars”, attacked Paris; and last week attacked San Bernardino, California. Last night President Obama spoke to the nation from the Oval Office, for only the third time of presidency, and essentially reiterated his “there’s nothing to see here but a JV team” mantra with a shift to gun control and climate change.
Obama can’t hear us and doesn’t intend to make terrorists hear us later, much less sooner. In fact, every time Islamic State hears Obama and the Democrats declare “climate change” as our number one threat, they are emboldened to kill more Americans and take more territory.
Obama started his political career in the Chicago living room of a Weather Underground terrorist, Bill Ayers and seems determined to finish it waging war on the weather, rather than Islamist terrorists, above ground, who he pretends don’t actually exist.
Obama is no Dubya, much less a Roosevelt. What does America need? At least…
“One man with courage [who can] makes a majority [willing to fight and defeat Islamic State].” – Andrew Jackson
DeVine Law appreciates the support shown by people from around the country and those who gathered in support of Rowan County, Kentucky Clerk of Court Kim Davis, when she was released from jail earlier this week for refusing to issue same-sex marriage licenses under her name and from her office, as ordered by a federal District Court judge. Her letter from the Clark County Jail emphasized her objections as a Christian, to aiding and abetting same-sex marriage.
Republican U.S. Rep Thomas Massie of the Blue Grass state was among those, along with GOP presidential candidates Mike Huckabee and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.
“I’m here because five Supreme Court justices stole my job. They legislated. They wrote law,” Massie said.
Bravo Rep. Massie. He refers to the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Obergefell declaring same-sex marriage a “right” out of thin Anthony Kennedy plus four other lawyers’ air. It’s too bad this was not the focus of Kim Davis’s civil disobedience because nothing in Scripture prohibits a government from defining marriage differently from the ideal described in Genesis by God the Father and in the Gospel of Matthew his son Jesus; nor does the Bible prohibit a Christian from exercising duties for the government associated with same. Moreover, God indulged polygamy even among his leaders in the Old Testament.
That said, DeVine Law did not agree with some fellow Christian conservatives such as Redstate’s Erick Erickson who said Davis “ought” to “just” resign. That’s essentially what then Brown v Board lawyer Thurgood Marshall told the civil disobedience icon of his day, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Get off the streets and let the lawyers do the work. But visuals of oppression are sometimes better than legal briefs in advancing the ball for self government by We the People.
Would it have been acceptable for an elected official to “just resign” over a matter of conscience”? Surely, but less so had she made her case on the grounds that the “law” of Kentucky still obtained given that the Obergefell decision was issued in violation of the Constitution.
Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson and Abraham Lincoln all objected to the notion of the court as being the final arbiter of the meaning of the founding document and, as elected executives like Davis, occasionally defied court decisions.
(For the record, we consider Huckabee’s claim that a state must pass a statute to effectuate a court decision to be specious. Liberal gun control-favoring state officials have delayed compliance with recent pro-Second Amendment rulings and this way.)
As for DeVine Law, we will focus on what Supreme Courts, Congresses and presidents ought to have done and not done. We leave Davis to the wolves from whom Christ and lawyer will protect her. Meanwhile, we said before her release, why not allow Davis the same freedom from jail that Obama and court lawbreakers enjoy, with the only caveat being she be enjoined from going to her office until she will submit to made up “law”?
Davis, it turns out had better lawyers than Erickson or DeVine, as hers worked out an accommodation to allow her to return to work, so long as she did not prohibit her deputy clerks from issuing the licenses. Bravo for her even if DeVine Law doesn’t generally favor such accommodations even in the private sector. We don’t think that the First Amendment’s Free Exercise clause empowers government to carve out exceptions to the general law to allow only certain Indian tribes to use illegal drugs nor to force Abercrombie & Fitch to make exceptions to their dress code for a Muslim. So we certainly do not think that every government employee should be able opt out enforcing any law they think conflicts with their religion.
Before Kentucky Clerk Davis resigns or is impeached, those five usurpers on the US SupCt should first. Nothing is more clear than that the Supreme Court unconstitutionally made law by inventing rights to same-sex marriage, and abortion for that matter, that are not in the Constitution. Davis has a legitimate grievance along with all constitutional conservatives, i.e. those who can read and understand the English language. The so-called new “law” granting a “right” to marry a person of the same sex was issued by five Oligarchs, posing as Supreme Court justices, who usurped the right of We the People to make laws via legislatures and amend the Supreme Law of the Land that is the U.S. Constitution only via its terms. The right to same-sex marriage in Kentucky and other states that have not enacted same, is more akin to an order issued by an Al Capone or Fidel Castro than a “law”.
For this reason, she walks in the righteous civil disobedience footsteps of MLK. She is, as he was, a flawed vessel. We take our heroes as they are. I respect the arguments of those who argued for resignation, but not that it was the “only” respectable course. Her lawyers found another respectable way, even if applied generally it would create chaos. This was a contempt case and a specific remedy was found.
Maybe if conservatives eventually succeed in their alliance with The Left in getting Kim Davis out of office they will support an interim Rowan County, Kentucky Clerk of Court who was granted amnesty under Obama’s made-up Executive Order, i.e.”Law”.
“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson
Even while serving as a Southern Railway, and later, Norfolk-Southern lawyer for the Carmens International labor union during the 1990s in South Carolina, Lawyer Michael Auburn was uncomfortable with the notion that Labor Day and the Labor Movement were so singularly associated with labor unions by so many. Labor, he says, is the promise of American Liberty to all Americans, most of the fruits of which laborious happiness pursuits one is deemed entitled to keep and much of which is accomplished via the sweat of entrepreneurs’ brows. Their labor involves the kind of risk-taking usually necessary to produce good-paying jobs for others. In short, owners’ work, i.e. labor should be celebrated just as much or more than the employee variety usually associated with this national holiday. Especially given the latest U.S. Jobs Report showing the lowest labor participation rate since the days of the 1970s Misery Index.
The literal “movement” of labor has nearly reached the same stasis under Obama (less than 2% growth = anemic) as the organized private sector variety did at least two decades. Even FDR opposed the notion of public sector government unions bargaining with itself with taxpayers money. The major impediment to economic growth, bringing discouraged workers back to the labor force, allowing part-time workers to work full time and wage growth are the taxes and regulations of Obamacare, Dodd-Frank and other Obamanomics anti-business impediments. Then there is the rapid automation via robots and other machines. Continue reading