Saturday, September 08, 2007

Summary Judgment

by William Perry Pendley - September 8th, 2007 -

In 2004, within four months of each other, two three-judge panels of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit decided cases involving the Constitution's Establishment Clause and its requirement of government neutrality regarding religion. In May, a panel held that a Latin cross on federal lands in honor of American servicemen killed in World War I violated the Establishment Clause and must be removed. That the memorial commemorated American "history and culture" was irrelevant to the panel; after all, the cross symbolizes Christianity.

In September, another panel held that Arizona's designation of private property as sacred to American Indian religious practitioners and off-limits to use by its owner did not violate the Establishment Clause. Because American Indians' religion, said the panel, is intertwined with their history and culture, governmental action supporting their religion is constitutional.

In February, the Ninth Circuit was asked, during oral arguments in San Francisco, to decide between these conflicting interpretations of the Establishment Clause.

I don't know what is funnier, a liberal Judge trying to defend attacking Christianity while promoting an American Indian religious practice (or any cult such as say Islam?) . . . . or a conservative Judge trying to defend the ongoing practice of our courts as being consistent with the "rule of law" while promoting adherence to precedents that cannot rationally be reconciled.

Both are farce.


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