Have a safe and happy night tonight!
Have you seen this essay? It’s long but worth reading. If you don’t have time, how about looking at the first few paragraphs and the last few? What Card says makes a lot of sense.
By Orson Scott Card (noted science fiction author and conservative
First appeared in print in The Rhinoceros Times, Greensboro, NC
By Orson Scott Card October 12, 2008
Upholding the Constitution
On one extreme, we have the idea that the Constitution is a written document that can only be altered by a deliberately time-consuming process of amendment.
On the other extreme, we have the idea that the Constitution means whatever a group of judges says it means.
The Constitution itself belongs to the first group — it declares that it can only be changed through the amendment process.
But ever since Roe v. Wade in 1973, we have watched as, first the U.S. Supreme Court, and now state supreme courts in Massachusetts, California, and Connecticut, make new law by judicial decree, based on “ideas” purportedly found in the federal and state constitutions, but not based on the plain language of those documents.
No one in their right mind can possibly claim that when these constitutions were approved, there was the slightest intention to force abortion, and now gay marriage, on societies that had never been given a chance to vote on such morally portentous matters.
Roe v. Wade originally allowed abortions only in the first trimester of pregnancy. But through diktat after diktat, without any new law passed by constitutional process, the abortion “right” has come to allow killing a viable baby in mid-birth, or discarding a living baby when it was rude enough to be born breathing in the midst of an abortion.
Now various state courts are declaring that “marriage” must be redefined to include something that “marriage” has never meant in the history of the human race — a reproductively and socially irrelevant “bond” between persons of the same sex.
As a science fiction writer, it has been my job to look at how the world works now, and then project into the future what might come next — and, when I can, suggest how negative changes might be remedied.
Full Faith and Credit
Despite their contempt for the Constitution, you can be sure that the proponents of gay marriage will use Article IV of the Constitution to force recognition of gay marriage in states that have not yet had it forced on them by their courts.
Article IV says “Full faith and credit shall be given in each state to the public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state. And the Congress may by general laws prescribe the manner in which such acts, records, and proceedings shall be proved, and the effect thereof.”
How does this work? For many years, when most states had tough divorce laws, people who wanted a divorce had to go to Nevada long enough to establish residency, and then get a divorce under Nevada’s much easier law.
Then, when they returned to their home state, that Nevada divorce had to be recognized, even though such a divorce would never have been lawful under that state’s own laws.
Congress has passed a law declaring that no state has to accept a gay marriage authorized in another state — but this sort of declaration seems to me likely to be ruled as beyond the scope of what Article IV allows.
Congress can set a standard of proof, but it is hard to imagine the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that Congress can simply negate the plain language of Article IV and declare that a marriage contract valid in California can be completely ignored in, say, North Carolina.
One can imagine litigation going on for years. Meanwhile, in state after state, by judicial fiat, gay marriages would be contracted and children adopted by gay couples until it would become nearly impossible to sort out the mess.
Worst Case Scenario …
In California, if Proposition 8 fails to pass, gay-marriage proponents will claim that this constitutes public approval of gay marriage.
Of course this is not true. Many people who have telephoned people about Prop. 8 have heard the person who answers the phone say, “No gay marriage! I am voting no on Prop. 8!” But when you try to explain that if you don’t want gay marriage, you have to vote yes on Prop. 8, they often get confused.
But let’s step back a little. There should never have been a Proposition 8.
In order to make such a radical change in human behavior and custom, the proponents of gay marriage should have followed constitutional, democratic process and persuaded people to support it until a majority was achieved.
That’s what the U.S. Constitution and every state constitution require. And that has not happened anywhere in the U.S.
What was the public emergency that made it so the New Puritans could not wait to persuade people to vote for what they wanted? The only emergency was that they knew that they could not do it. They knew democracy would not choose what they wanted.
Therefore small groups of dictators have simply taken it upon themselves to deny universal human practice and remake the law as they saw fit, without waiting for democratic process.
Their pretexts are laughable, their authority nonexistent. No constitution declares that any court has such a right.
So why is anyone obeying them? Because, in support of their illegal action, the courts can issue writs removing the power of any other state official to resist them. There is no institution that even knows how to begin resisting the illegal usurpation of power by the judicial branch.
No branch of government was ever intended to have the power to dictate new law without other branches of government having a chance to stop them or at least slow them down.
In essence, we have suffered a coup and lost our democracy. A minority is dictating new law against the will of the majority, and will spread it by force throughout the country by using the full-faith-and-credit clause.
This should terrify the proponents of gay marriage, because a process that right now seems to work for them could just as easily, and just as unfairly, be used against them. But they think only in the short term. They don’t mind leaving democracy in a shambles and making the Constitution a joke, as long as they get their way on this issue.
As much as I think gay marriage is a terrible idea, grounded on neither science nor common sense, we should be even more concerned that our republic is in the process of ceasing to be in any meaningful sense a democracy.
Amending the Constitution
We need a constitutional amendment declaring that no court, federal or state, can strike down or alter any law passed by a legislative body except when it contradicts the plain language of the applicable constitution, as understood at the time of passage.
The unconstitutional usurpation of powers by the judges must be brought to an immediate stop.
But with Democrats in control of the Congress, there is no chance of getting that body to propose a constitutional amendment that will correct this gross abuse — again, because they have only seen it used to enact their agenda. Short-sighted as they are, they will not oppose this judicial power until and unless it is used against them. Then, of course, they’ll scream bloody murder and behave much more badly than the too-long complacent American moderates and conservatives.
What recourse, then, do we have?
1. Right now most states have majorities of voters who are opposed to gay marriage. Since Congress and the Supreme Court are unlikely to provide any remedy, the Constitution provides an alternative. Article V allows the legislatures of two-thirds of the states to call for a constitutional convention, and if they do, Congress is required to call that convention.
If the anti-gay-marriage majorities demanded that their state legislators vote to call such a convention, Congress could do nothing to stop it.
Such a convention can then propose amendments to the Constitution which, if ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the states, would be as valid as any of the amendments originally passed by Congress.
Of course, once such a convention is called, it can propose any amendments it wants; and Article IV is silent on such matters as whether the states would get votes according to their size, or one vote per state.
And even if such a convention confined itself to undoing judicial dictatorship, we would still have to get three-fourths of the states to agree to repudiate authority which the courts were never given!
It should have taken a three-fourths majority to grant that right — which would never have been granted, since no American majority would ever have agreed to throw away democracy and turn our government over to judges who think they’re wiser than the common people.
2. The other recourse is this: We citizens do not have to recognize any attempt by any body of government to redefine a human relationship that existed for thousands of years before any existing government or constitution was established.
No judge, no legislature, no ruler has the right or power to change the meaning of a word. Languages are created by common consent. Governments did not create marriage, they merely regulated it — requiring blood tests, refusing to grant legal status to marriages between persons too closely related, and deciding when or whether a marriage can be dissolved.
What they don’t have the right to do is declare that “marriage” now includes relationships that were never intended when laws regulating marriage were enacted.
Nor do they have the power to force us to change our understanding of marriage. Regardless of what the government says, if we as individuals or communities refuse to accept anything except a heterosexual bond as a “marriage,” we cannot be forced to change our mind, our language, or our social behavior.
But they will certainly try. Anyone who doesn’t accept homosexual couplings as marriages will be called names and persecuted. Our children will be propagandized to accept “marriages” that we repudiate.
If we take our children to private schools, the state will refuse to certify any school that doesn’t join in the propaganda.
If we take our children out of school to teach them at home, the state will declare home-schooling illegal — there are movements already under way in several states to do exactly that.
Defying the Dictators
The New Puritans who are forcing this on us are dictators at heart, haters of democracy if it doesn’t get the results they want. Isn’t it ironic that most of them call themselves “Democrats” and call their opponents “fascists”? I guess “marriage” isn’t the only word they’ve redefined.
(For instance, the Democratic Party leadership has openly talked of reinstating the so-called “fairness” doctrine exclusively against conservative talk radio, with the purpose of shutting it down. They hate freedom of speech for anyone who does not agree with them.)
The New Puritans will not rest until every scrap of resistance against them has been beaten down. We know this because this is how they already behave wherever they have power — universities, news media, schools, and many other institutions already have shown us the mindless extremism of these New Puritans, and how relentlessly they deprive their opponents of their livelihood and reputation.
We saw in 2000 how eager the dictator-judges were to defy and destroy Florida election law in order to elect the U.S. president they preferred.
Meanwhile, any opposition to them is decried as bigotry, because, despite their track record of utter intolerance, the New Puritans claim to have a monopoly on tolerance!
Your ability to raise your children to believe in your religion is already under attack; the New Puritans are quite prepared to use force to take your children and propagandize them to believe the scientifically indefensible dogma that gay marriage is “just the same as” marriage.
What we must make clear is that we will never allow a dictatorship to define what marriages and families are. Those who have taken this dictatorial power have done so illegally and unconstitutionally; we do not have to obey dictators in America; the Constitution does not require it. Indeed, defending the Constitution requires us to repudiate would-be dictators.
Because of the actions of the dictator-judges, we are required to get three-fourths majorities to restore the Constitution, it is possible that despite the will of the majority, such efforts will fail. A radical minority unconstitutionally forced a new law on us; but they require us to meet the constitutional process in order to overturn their “law.”
Unload that Gun
At that point, what can we do? I’ve heard frustrated people talk about armed rebellion, about overthrowing the government. Those of you with itchy trigger fingers, put away your guns. We are committed to democracy, not to violence.
Please read a history of the French Revolution. And then the Russian Revolution. Armed rebellion does not restore constitutional government, it most likely replaces one dictatorship with a worse one.
And while you’re at it, read a history of the U.S. Civil War and decide if you think that’s a good idea. I don’t.
What we have to recognize is that Constitutional government has already been overthrown by judges who thought they were smarter and more righteous than us common people. Because the process was incremental, we have allowed it to go on, getting worse and worse, but it is not overthrowing the government to restore it.
They seized power in a nearly invisible coup, but seize it they did, and it’s time for us to declare that we’ve seen their crime and refuse to accept it. As President Goerge H.W. Bush said after Iraq seized Kuwait in 1991, we must say, “This will not stand.”
The way to restore the Constitution’s requirement that only legislatures are allowed to legislate is simple and peaceful, though it requires more courage and unity than to try answer usurpation with force.
All we have to do is withdraw our support from the dictatorship.
Going on Strike
Conveniently, that portion of American society that supports the written Constitution, and that denies the power of government to redefine marriage, also provides the overwhelming majority of volunteers for the American military and for law enforcement and public safety.
What if Evangelicals, Catholics, Mormons, orthodox Jews — and people of any religion who believe in democracy and the Constitution — all retired from the military or police, or refused to enlist or reenlist as long as they are going to be used to enforce the “laws” made up by dictators?
What if we ceased to put any marriage announcements, obituaries, or want-ads in papers that run “gay marriage” announcements, or even stopped buying those papers at all? The “mainstream” media would quickly discover that they aren’t so mainstream after all.
What if we all kept our children at home and refused to allow them to go to propagandizing schools?
How long could our government function if we withdrew all our support?
What if only ten percent of us conducted such open resistance? Or even one percent? How long would the government retain even a shred of legitimacy in other citizens’ eyes if they are dragging us off to jail or taking away our children because we have committed the crime of wanting to raise our them in our own religion, or wanting to be subject only to laws passed by Constitutional means?
Along the way, we would declare public strikes: Everyone who rejects judicial dictatorship simply stays home from work and spends no money, anywhere. The first time, for one day. The second time, for two. If people get fired, we will establish strike funds to help them keep going. But we also boycott anyone who fires a striker.
What we need to decide, right now, is that we will not be ruled by dictators, our children will not be propagandized by the New Puritans, and we will not allow any government to redefine marriage.
We have long been disunited and ineffective in our resistance to the encroachment of dictators. We have to decide, now, that they have finally gone too far, striking into the heart of our homes. We will try all the legal remedies available; but if we are unable to dislodge the dictators, we must, without violence of any kind, make it impossible to govern or defend this nation as long as the dictators claim and exercise these usurped powers.
Vote While We’re Still Allowed To
Of course, all of this would be completely unnecessary if we were to elect a President and Congress that would appoint and confirm judges who did not usurp power, and who would pass laws denying any state court the right to redefine marriage.
But the media have helped Obama sell the lie that he is the man who can bring us together; in fact, Obama is the most radically leftist candidate ever to run as a major party nominee,
and he has never shown the slightest willingness to compromise on anything. His judicial appointees would be committed dictator-judges, without exception.
We cannot do anything about whom the voters in the most liberal states choose to represent them in Congress. But we can make sure we choose pro-Constitution candidates in the states where we are the majority.
And we can vote for state legislators who are likely to be willing, when it becomes necessary, to go over the heads of Congress and vote for a constitutional convention to correct these abuses.
Two years of anti-democratic Democratic Party rule would make it clear that we have chosen the foxes to guard the chicken coop. If that should happen, then in 2010, we must try to make the calling of a constitutional convention the most important issue in every state legislative contest.
We can prevail in restoring Constitutional government to America — if we have the courage to pay the price along the way.
“A people that values its privileges above its principles soon loses both.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower
What are we living for? What are our priorities? Are we living for ourselves and our own pleasures, or for something higher and greater? When we vote, how will we decide who to vote for? The person we hope will make us the most personally comfortable, or the person who will be attempting to protect the freedoms and safety of our nation…and hopefully the entire world?
President Bush has taken huge amounts of criticism for his invasion of Iraq, but as it turns out, he really was trying to protect the world from nuclear war by terrorists. Take a minute to look at this report by NBC on what was really going on behind the scenes.
Secret U.S. mission hauls uranium from Iraq
Last major stockpile from Saddam’s nuclear efforts arrives in Canada
“The last major remnant of Saddam Hussein’s nuclear program — a huge stockpile of concentrated natural uranium — reached a Canadian port Saturday to complete a secret U.S. operation that included a two-week airlift from Baghdad and a ship voyage crossing two oceans.
The removal of 550 metric tons of “yellowcake” — the seed material for higher-grade nuclear enrichment — was a significant step toward closing the books on Saddam’s nuclear legacy. It also brought relief to U.S. and Iraqi authorities who had worried the cache would reach insurgents or smugglers crossing to Iran to aid its nuclear ambitions.
What’s now left is the final and complicated push to clean up the remaining radioactive debris at the former Tuwaitha nuclear complex about 12 miles south of Baghdad — using teams that include Iraqi experts recently trained in the Chernobyl fallout zone in Ukraine.”
Why isn’t this being broadcast? Could it be because the press wants Obama elected, and so they don’t want Bush to look good right now? What do you think?
I want to encourage everyone to check out http://www.michiganfamily.org to consider their views on how to vote next Tuesday. The hardest part for me is figuring out where the various candidates for the judiciary offices stand. So far it looks like in Michigan the ones I would want to support based on their determination to uphold the constitution are:
CLIFF TAYLOR for justice of the Supreme Court and
RICHARD BANDSTRA as the Kent County (my district) judge of the court of appeals.
I can’t find any information on the candidates for judge of the circuit court: Brian C.Downs, Kathleen Ann Feeney, Paul J. Sullivan,and Daniel V. Zemaitis. Can anybody reading this suggest where to find information on these people?
Also, I bet most states have some type of voter guide. I have a friend who just moved here from Texas (and less recently California). She mentioned that in CA they sent information out to the voters, which was great, but that in TX it was very hard to figure things out. I’m not sure what’s out there from state to state, but I’m thinking many states will have something on line that at least gives the flavor of each candidate.
If you have time, below is the link to World Magazine, which has lots of interesting articles, not only on the situation in India that I referred to last, but also on the upcoming election, views of the candidates, etc. They volunteer in this week’s edition: “For late-breaking campaign news and election night results, visit worldmag.com ”
And here’s another to the gleanings of a conservative lawyer from southern CA:
Happy researching! What a privilege it is in this country to be able to vote. Whoever you’re for…please make the effort to vote. Every vote counts!
I received this urgent prayer request, and I can’t think of anything more pressing to share on my blog. It makes me think of the Boxer Rebellion in China or the terrible slaughter of Christians in Indonesia in the 90’s. I had this verified by a missionary I know who works in this area with a different mission, so I am certain this is a true report. Below are exact quotes from the letter, deleting specific ministry names and changing the time so it reads correctly. The chaos began sometime over last weekend (October 18-19), and so I would ask for fervent prayer at least for this coming week and through this coming weekend (November 1-2). Thank you!
…but none of our staff imagined that they would see this kind of carnage…. And it seems to be totally under the radar of the Western Media ….Let me explain…. A militant Hindu priest and 4 of his attendants, who were zealously going around the villages of Orissa and ‘reconverting’ people back to Hinduism, were gunned down by unknown assailants in Central Orissa last weekend. Immediately the Christians were blamed.. The cry rose up…’Kill the Christians!’ And the horror began…. In the past 4 days, we have first-hand witness to hundreds of churches being blown up or burned and many, many dozens of Christian tribals have been slaughtered for no other reason than they bear the name of Christ. Night and day I have been in touch with [those who] are right in the middle of all this chaos. In [our area], just after the police came to offer protection, a group of 70 blood-thirsty militants came to kill our staff and destroy the home. They were not allowed to get in, but they did a lot of damage to our [orphange] by throwing rocks and bricks and smashing our gate, etc. They have promised to come back and ‘finish the job.’ Our kids and staff are locked inside and have stayed that way with doors and windows shut this past week. It has been a time of desperately calling on the Lord in prayer. More police have come to offer protection. In [another region], the police and some local sympathizers got to our center and gave our staff and kids about 3 minutes notice to vacate. No one had time to even grab a change of clothes or any personal belonging. As they fled, the blood thirsty mob came to kill everyone in the building. We would have had a mass funeral there, but for His grace. In [another town], the mob came looking for Christian homes and missions. The local Hindu people, our neighbors, turned them away by saying that there were no Christians in this area. So they left. We had favor. The same thing happened in [another town]. All our centers are under lock down with the kids and staff huddled inside and police outside.. The fanatics are circling outside waiting for a chance to kill. Others were not so fortunate. In a nearby Catholic orphanage, the mob allowed the kids to leave and locked up a priest and a computer teacher in house and burned them to death. Many believers have been killed and hacked into pieces and left on the road…. even women and children… Every one of our directors that I have spoken to said: ‘We stay with our kids…. we live together or die together, but we will never abandon what God has called us to do.’ More than 5000 Christian families have had their homes burned or destroyed. They have fled into the jungles and are living in great fear waiting for the authorities to bring about peace. But so far, no peace is foreseen. This will continue for another 7 days…. supposedly the 14 day mourning period for the slain Hindu priest. Many more Christians may die and their houses be destroyed. Many more churches will be smashed down. The federal government is trying to restore order and perhaps things will calm down. We ask for your prayers. Only the hand of God can calm this storm. None of us know the meaning of persecution. But now our kids and staff know what that means. So many of our kids coming from Hindu backgrounds are confused and totally bewildered at what is happening around them. So many of their guardians have fled into the jungles and are unable to come and get them during these trying times.
“Never let that which you do not understand rob you of he value of that which you do understand; because the one is founded upon your knowledge, and the other upon your ignorance. So believe your beliefs and doubt your doubts. Never make the fatal mistake of believing your doubts and doubting your beliefs.” Author Unknown
Lots of friends have asked about my older kids, who are no longer living with us. If you’re a Facebook friend, then you can find pictures of them in a new album I’m making entitled “Family.” But, if you’re not, here are a few recent favorites just to give you a feel for what they’re doing!
Here’s Aaron last weekend in Vermont.
And here is Aaron with Reuben and Gideon.
Carleen and Reu
Carleen and Gideon. They’re in Connecticut, unless they’re in Boston, NYC, Vermont, or somewhere else! Aaron’s still doing computer consulting…and it’s obvious what Carleen’s doing all day! 🙂
Here are Michael, Grace, and Eowyn in Germany, where they’re now living.
Michael’s practicing as a dentist, and Grace is caring for Eowyn!
…most of the time! Sometimes they still have time for romance. 🙂
Here are Jon and Gerlinde enjoying the Michigan Lakeshore last summer.
Here’s Linda after they returned to England. Sorry I have no current pictures of Jonathan, but hopefully I will next week. He’s guest-lecturing in Moscow right now.