Alan at idablue
has a thought-provoking post about bill SJM 119
currently moving through the legislature. The bill supports restricting the federal courts from ruling over the separation of church and state, and includes the following nugget:
...the Supreme Court shall not have jurisdiction to review, by appeal, writ of certiorari, or otherwise, any matter to the extent that relief is sought against an entity of Federal, State, or local government, or against an officer or agent of Federal, State, or local government (whether or not acting in official or personal capacity), concerning that entity's, officer's, or agent's acknowledgment of God as the sovereign source of law, liberty, or government.
Granted, the bill doesn't actually apply to Idaho. It's intent is to encourage Congress to pass the Constitution Restoration Act
(which is the original source of the quote above.)
I had a hard time getting too worked up about all this, but than again, I'm no constitutional lawyer, and the implications of legal jargon often escape me. But Brandi, bless her little misguided heart, snapped me out of my somnolence. Here's what she had to say about the measure
"I think its important that our Constitution protects the freedom of religion, not the freedom from religion."
What? The Constitution doesn't protect me from religion? I thought that was purpose of separating the church from the state... so the powers of the government couldn't be used to coerce or punish me for my lack of religious faith.
I've noticed a lot of dumb things come out of Brandi's mouth (I refer you to the email
she sent to her followers after she called House Speaker Bruce Newcomb a "bitch
"), so I didn't get too worked up, until Bryan Fischer
approvingly quoted her. Even then, the thought of the feds backing up the church seemed a little extreme, so I emailed Jack Van Valkenburg at the ACLU of Idaho
and asked him to lay it out for me. He graciously took time out of his busy day to write me back:
"...the freedom 'of' religion isn’t protected, and can’t be protected, unless the government is prohibited from promoting the religion of the majority over that of the minority. Religious liberty requires the separation of church and state."
That makes a lot more sense. This isn't about defending religion, it's about establishing a state-sanctioned religion - diminishing other religions in the process.
Are you ready for Uncle Sam to tell you which God is the right God?