Happy Independence Day.
Thank you, Founding Fathers; America was great while it lasted.
Recalling that poor
Oldsmobile ad: never mind the Founders, this is not even my own
father’s America! Not because of some recent U.S. Supreme Court
decisions, but because of some of the issues that were already a
problem before the Court spoke last month: the loss of personal
responsibility and the nation’s common sense, the substitution of
political correctness for insistence on truth, the easy acceptance
of trillions in national debt passed on to future generations, the
substitution of open borders for rational legal immigration.
Speaking of that last item, this also isn’t my immigrant
It’s hard to admit, as we
display our American flag on Saturday, that it no longer stands for
American exceptionalism or even much in the way of respect from the
rest of the world. And since my recent column noting that the
historic Confederate flag shouldn’t be banished, Nation of Islam
leader Louis Farrakhan has called for the American flag to be banned
due to its links with racism.
“I don’t know what the
hell the fight is about over the Confederate flag! We need to put
the American flag down because we’ve caught as much hell under that
as the Confederate flag”, he spewed.
Since my column ran, I
heard a strong argument that my own understanding of Civil War
history is wrong. I’d learned that the war wasn’t fought over
slavery, which was on its way out as no longer economically viable,
but was fought over states’ rights in general and other economic
factors. Going to the Internet, I discovered that this is a major
ongoing argument! While mine was repeated, I found more sites which
state that the invention of the cotton gin, which helped with
processing, encouraged increased slavery to pick more cotton and
make the Southern economy stronger.
I wonder if revisionism
was part of my own history studies as well as today’s. Never mind. I
still want to know: if we celebrate the colonies seceding from
England (happy Independence Day!), how come the South couldn’t
secede from us?
Also: While it’s fair to
assume that the estimated one in ten African-Americans who fought
for the Union had slavery as a motivator, it’s hard to believe that
the roughly 665,000 northerners who were casualties of that cruel
war would have suffered/died to free the slaves. If they did choose
to make this sacrifice, I hope their spirits aren’t waiting in limbo
to hear prominent black leaders say thank you today.
Here’s something fun to
discuss at your 4th of July family picnic. Media analyst Mark Dice
did a man-in-the-street interview, asking Americans to sign a
petition to ban the Stars and Stripes and replace it with a
triangle/rainbow flag representing gay pride in a “new world order”.
Yes, some did.
Though I lost confidence
in the U.S. Supreme Court with the 2005 Kelo decision that let local
government take private property to give to developers, I don’t have
a problem with most of the recent SCOTUS decisions; the Justices had
to work with what they had.
For some reason Congress
thought it could pass a law in 1996 telling the states they should
defend traditional marriage, as if this was any business of the
Federal Government. The feds should support contracts, and let
people call their unions marriage or whatever they want within their
own spiritual paradigms.
However, I wouldn’t have
missed reading Chief Justice Roberts’ dissenting opinion on gay
marriage, deploring this major change in a “social institution that
has formed the basis of human society for millennia, for the
Kalahari Bushmen (to the) Aztecs”. The former chose never to evolve
out of the hunter-gatherer stage, and the “social institution” of
the latter included human sacrifice and playing ball with their
enemies’ skulls. And, the polygamy of the Old Testament was also an
ancient tradition. Next marriage case!
On ObamaCare, some
Justices thought their job was to interpret the actual language of
the law; others tried to determine the intent of Congress. A lot
depended on whether one thinks Congress meant to refer to “a state”
or “The State” (i.e., Big Government) while it was passing a law it
admits it hadn’t read. So, leaping right over Congress, the Court
decided to follow the intent of Barack Obama, which was to make such
a mess of our health care that eventually patients would throw up
their hands and beg for a single-payer system.
When MIT Prof. Jonathan
Gruber apologize to a Congressional hearing for having said
President Obama’s health law depended on “the stupidity of the
American voter,” he meant voters are too stupid to know that
socialized medicine is good for them, so lawmakers had to be
deceptive at first.
We’ll be hearing more
about the Court’s support for ridiculous lawsuits under the Fair
Housing Act, allowing them not only for “purposeful discrimination”,
but “disparate impact”, however unintentional. Investor’s Business
Daily writes, “President Obama's race cops will wage an even bigger
war against lenders, insurers, employers and whoever else fails
their ‘disparate impact’ test”.
At least the Court stopped
the EPA from more quickly wrecking our economy with impossible
emission requirements, and preserved the death penalty for savage
Not being a lawyer, I’d
maybe be reluctant to give my opinion about these great legal
decisions, but the smartest lawyer I know emailed me this when I
asked him for some insight:
“I have been a lawyer for
35 years and I have read practically every SCOTUS decision in the
last 35 years. There is no understanding… They just make it up and
call it precedent until they don’t want it to be precedent anymore.
That’s why they call it a “living Constitution”; so it can change to
suit the mood.”
Happy Birthday, America.
This year’s gift: a chance to observe what is happening in Greece
and Puerto Rico, and decide to grow up.
Barbara Anderson of
Marblehead is president of Citizens for Limited Taxation and a Salem