Religious liberty for atheists, too

Enlisting or re-enlisting in a military service requires taking an oath, ending in the words “so help me God.”  An atheist airman trying to re-enlist in the Air Force has crossed out those words in the paperwork he is supposed to sign.  So the Air Force is not letting him re-enlist.

Lawsuits are in the works.  But does it make sense to require a person to swear in the name of a deity he does not believe in?  And doesn’t requiring a religious oath for military service constitute a “religious test” for public office, which the Constitution does not allow?  More to the point, in a time when the religious liberty of Christians is threatened more and more, don’t Christians need to support the religious liberty of everyone, including atheists? [Read more...]

Supremes reject Obama’s “recess” appointments

The Constitution’s balance of powers is re-asserting itself.  President Obama had been appointing officials that need Senate approval by doing so during holidays when Senators were out of town.  Since the Constitution allows for temporary appointments when the Senate is in recess (back when the Senate was a part time body with long periods between sessions), the President claimed these short holiday breaks constituted a “recess,” even though the Senate was still in session.

The Supreme Court has ruled–unanimously!–that these appointments  are illegal.  The Judicial branch is reining in the Executive Branch in its attempts to exert its power at the expense of the Legislative branch.  The Constitution still works. [Read more...]

“Fixing” the Second Amendment

Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, having spent much of his career trying to interpret the Constitution away, now wants to change it.  He has written a book entitled Six Amendments: How and Why We Should Change the Constitution.  He has published an op-ed piece on how he thinks the Second Amendment can be “fixed” by adding five simple words.  See them, along with some thoughts, after the jump. [Read more...]

The President and the Rule of Law

During his State of the Union address, President Obama said that because Congress keeps thwarting his agenda, he will advance his positions about immigration, the environment, the economy, gun control, and other of his priorities by issuing executive orders.

He has already been doing that sort of thing.  Conservatives don’t like Obamacare, so they might be glad that the President has changed and delayed its terms.  But by what authority does he just alter a duly-ratified law?  The president is supposed to execute the laws, not create them or change the ones that he doesn’t like. [Read more...]

Federalizing gay marriage

Not long ago, advocates of gay marriage were saying that since marriage laws are set by each state, gay marriage is an issue for individual states to decide.   Some, more socially liberal states, might approve same sex marriage, while socially conservative states wouldn’t have to.  But now the authority of states to set marriage laws and the solution of allowing diverse practices are both being taken away, as courts are ruling that same sex marriage must be legalized everywhere. [Read more...]

Obama will ask Congress before attacking Syria

President Obama has agreed to ask  Congress for authorization before he attacks Syria.  I salute that, since the Constitution requires Congress to approve going to war.  However, I predict that a coalition of liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans will vote the proposal down.  What do you think Congress should do?  What do you think Congress will do? [Read more...]


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