James Leroy Wilson's blog

Thursday, December 22, 2005

nullification

From the inbox, regarding Nobody's Business, an interesting perspective:

Here in Indiana we've just had a local judge, David Hamilton, actually accept a case brought by the ACLU and he has now returned a judgment that orders the state Legislature to stop allowing preachers to mention Jesus Christ in their prayers. I suppose they can still mention Allah as that religion was not mentioned in the judgment.

It is my contention that the justice system has no authorization to act in any religious matters. All the lower courts are set up by the Congress under Article 1, Section 8, Clause 9, of the federal Constitution and as such they are subject to all the restrictions the Constitution places upon Congress. As such these courts may not interfere with the practice of religion in this country in any way. Congress may not delegate a power that it does not possess.

The first Amendment says "Congress shall make no laws respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof". The Congress has no power to interfere with the free exercise of religion ergo the courts also do not have that power.

This country is founded upon the rule of law. In these instances the lower courts have assumed the power to judge these matters despite that they are expressly prohibited from doing so. The practice of state nullification of a federal law, enacted by Congress, has gone unused for, perhaps, more than 175 years. If my memory serves me it was last used by Massachusetts to enable that state not to send troops to Washington when ordered to do so during the War of 1812. It refused to do so and nothing happened. It appears to me that it is time we investigate that action again.


- Ed Sparks, Indianapolis

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