Tuesday 29th November 2022

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Looking Ahead For Life

September 26, 2022 Frontpage No Comments

By CHRISTOPHER MANION

The prospects for life received a historic boost this year when the U.S. Supreme Court returned to the States and the people “the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States.”
That phrase comes from the “forgotten Tenth Amendment” in the Constitution’s Bill of Rights. Its restoration is central to the recovery of the proper relationship of the States and the Federal Government enshrined in the Constitution.
The powers of the Federal Government are limited. The Supreme Court’s refreshing reminder of that fact opens the door to a historic countrywide effort at the State and local level.
When State legislatures meet in January, they should invoke that vital anchor of the Bill of Rights and exercise those powers in a wide range of issues.
The opportunity is challenging — for fifty years or more, State legislatures have been forbidden by rogue Supreme Court justices from even addressing these issues.
But in 2023, laws regarding abortion, marriage, religion, and the entire “gender ideology” will be debated by legislators and senators at the State level for the first time in years.
And they’re going to need our help.
Roe v. Wade (1973) and Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992) were in error, the Supreme Court said last June in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health. It is now up to individual States and local communities to address the issue of abortion.
But the State powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution range far and wide. And this revival of the Tenth Amendment regarding life offers promising opportunities in other fundamental areas to take back the culture and cure it.
In McCollum v. Board of Education (1948), the Court ruled that “use of tax-supported property for religious instruction…violated the Establishment clause.”
But in June’s Carson v. Makin decision, the Court found that Maine could not exclude families who send their children to religious schools from its State-funded tuition reimbursement program.
Does that mean that children who attend religious schools — even home-schooled children — can enjoy State and local funding?
The answer is yes. But we have to fight for it.
In Engel v. Vitale (1962), the Court banned public schools from sponsoring a voluntary, nondenominational prayer.
But in June, in Kennedy vs. Bremerton School District, the Court found that the State may not suppress an individual from engaging in personal religious observance on public school grounds.
Does that mean can children pray publicly inside a third-grade classroom?
The answer is yes. But we have to fight for it.
The constitutions of 49 of the 50 States in the Union give thanks to God for the liberties enjoyed by the people. Can public school students and teachers now be permitted to read their State constitution out loud in class?
How about the Declaration of Independence, which mentions God no fewer than five times?
The answer is yes. But we have to fight for it.
In Stone v. Graham (1980), the Court declared that posting the Ten Commandments on the wall of public school classrooms was unconstitutional.
Can local school boards now address the violence in public schools by reposting the Ten Commandments on every classroom wall in their district?
The answer is yes. But we have to fight for it.
And how about “gender”? Where does that appear in the Constitution?
Sure, the Nineteenth Amendment forbids denying the right to vote “on account of sex,” but there are only two sexes. “Male and female He created them” and all that (Gen. 1:27). When we last looked, there were 81 “genders,” if anybody’s counting.
Let’s face it. Isn’t it time for State legislatures to revisit the entire “Gender Ideology” agenda, and refuse to comply with Joe Biden’s Federal Perversion Program that he’s trying to force into every aspect of public life, including any schools receiving Federal lunch subsidies?
The answer is yes. But we have to fight for it.
In Obergefell v. Hodges (2015), the Court declared that State laws defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman were unconstitutional.
But the word “marriage” doesn’t appear in the Constitution either. Can States now reclaim their proper jurisdiction over family law?
The answer is yes. But we have to fight for it.

What We’re Up Against

“No one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it” — George Orwell.
St. Augustine, on the first page of his City of God, identifies the libido dominandi — the lust for power — as the ruling vice of the City of Man, whose ruler is Satan.
Before Augustine, there were no limits on the power of earthly rulers. It was for Augustine to interpret “Render unto Caesar” as a principle that limits earthly power and a principle that liberates individual freedom. Man’s pilgrimage to eternal life is his highest goal, and government cannot achieve that for him.
For Augustine, government’s sole task was limited to providing a modicum of peace, freedom, and order for man to work out his salvation through Christ and His Church.
And ever since, of all civilizations, only the Christian West has acknowledged any limits on government power at all.
Our Founding Fathers were intimately familiar with that history. For them, it represented a perpetual battle for freedom and virtue against the powerful temptation of the lust for power.
In the closing days of the Constitutional Convention in 1787, George Mason of Virginia proposed adding a Bill of Rights to the text. That proposal was soundly defeated. Those who prevailed opposed naming particular rights because no list could be complete, and thus, it was better to have no list at all.
But in December 1787, Thomas Jefferson wrote to James Madison that “A bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against any government on earth.”
After the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia adjourned, each of the thirteen States had conventions of their own to debate their adoption of the Constitution. As they met, several of them were reluctant to vote in favor of adoption without the guarantee that the First Congress would adopt a Bill of Rights.
To satisfy that demand, in December 1791 Congress passed the Bill of Rights, stating in the Preamble that their purpose was “to prevent misconstruction or abuse of [the Federal government’s] powers,” and to extend “the ground of public confidence in the government.”
The Tenth Amendment drives home the principle that the Federal government has certain delegated powers, and no others.
Since Marbury v. Madison (1803), Americans learned that the Supreme Court is not always a friend of liberty. As it has overseen, approved, and often proclaimed novel new powers of the national government (including the Court itself) the Tenth Amendment has been stowed in the bottom desk drawer.
But the principle of limited government offers America its last defense against the Left’s Leviathan. The Supreme Court can restore the rights of the States and the people, but the States and the people have to embrace those rights, celebrate them, and act on them.
Today the Left’s abuse of powers has not only transgressed the Constitution’s limits on power, it has targeted them for utter destruction. While there is little the citizen can do to curb the crimes of a rogue unelected bureaucracy in Washington, the opportunities on the State and local level abound.
America’s Secular City is allied with the Democrat Left to drown our children in a sea of moral rot. The Supreme Court has opened the door to our using our rights protected by the Tenth Amendment to fight back in the place we can be most effective — our own backyard.

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