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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Ever Hear of Our Inalienable Rights

Keith Ellison is a recently elected Congressman from Minnesota who is a Muslim. Powerline examined his life closely before the election. Ellison denied it but the record shows he has been an active member of the Black Muslim headed by Louis Farrakan. It was also reported that he had close ties to major Muslim groups that may have links to terrorism funding. (Here is a Powerline link).

During the election, after Powerline exposed his background, Ellison claimed that he had discarded that facet of his life long ago. He also disavowed the blatant Anti-Semitism of the group. His message was accepted by the public as he won election.

Ellison has created a minor scandal by refusing to swear his oath of loyalty to the Constitution and this country as a Congressman upon a Bible. He claims it conflicts with his Muslim religion. He will swear upon the Koran.

Dennis Prager recently criticized Ellison for this. Wrote Prager:

Of course, Ellison's defenders argue that Ellison is merely being honest; since he believes in the Koran and not in the Bible, he should be allowed, even encouraged, to put his hand on the book he believes in. But for all of American history, Jews elected to public office have taken their oath on the Bible, even though they do not believe in the New Testament, and the many secular elected officials have not believed in the Old Testament either. Yet those secular officials did not demand to take their oaths of office on, say, the collected works of Voltaire or on a volume of New York Times editorials, writings far more significant to some liberal members of Congress than the Bible. Nor has one Mormon official demanded to put his hand on the Book of Mormon. And it is hard to imagine a scientologist being allowed to take his oath of office on a copy of "Dianetics" by L. Ron Hubbard.

Naturally, the multi-culti Left has pilloried Prager for insisting on our time-honored tradition. Prager today defends himself from the harsh (invective-laden) critics. While any given individual Founder may have had his own brand of religious beliefs, that is not the issue. the issue ios upon what principles this country was founded.

Writes Prager:

America derives its laws from the Constitution. It derives its values from the Bible. We don't get inalienable rights from the Constitution; we get them from God. Which is exactly what the signers of the Declaration of Independence wrote: We are endowed with inalienable rights by our Creator, not by government and not by any man-made document.

This is what the critics do not understand. This is what so many of our government-loving citizens do not understand.

We have granted the government limited powers over us. We can only offer what we personally possess. We have never been able to grant government power over the natural rights of others. We do not possess their personal rights. No matter how popular or even necessary it appears, we cannot cede the rights of others to the government.

That is why the Constitution expresses its powers so explicitly. Activist judges for over a century have denied this concept. That is how they can take people's property from them in eminent domain without the specific public purpose as stated under the Constitution. This is how they usurp legislative power to decide issues that are not theirs to decide. This is how the government secularists (their religion) are so wrong fundamentally.

Is it a right of Ellson's to not be forced to swear his oath of fealty to the country and its Constitution on a symbol of the moral principles under-pinning the subjects? No. He has a right to practice his own religion and to not have to follow a religion established by the country. But this is a traditional oath of fealty. And out of tradition he should follow it.

Unless he truly feels to loyalty to the Constitution.


At 8:33 AM, Blogger francois said...

I just don't get your reasoning. The Bible is a Judeo-Christian book. And I would think we could all agree that we do not have a national religion. Therefore, anyone should be able to swear an oath on any holy book they deem fit, or if they are atheist, say "I affirm". The army does it that way.

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