Second-class citizenship for those with deeply religious moral
whoooo26505 at yahoo.com
Mon Nov 27 11:17:32 PST 2006
... the thing that I have not understood about this viewpoint is the claim that passions about world view should not be cultivated by the political system merely because they are packaged into a "God argument." There is nothing in constitutional theory(or the history of it) which supports this. To the contrary, the whole idea of American constitutionalism is that these and other fixations that cause humans to rule one another are given an explicit license to compete in the democratic ritual. It is other portions of constitutionalism -- checks and balances, separation of powers, the codification of fundamental liberty -- which are supposed to act against the urge to unfairly oppress another based upon a God argument. In other words, it is one thing to say that Courts should not offer a policy position based upon a religious a priori, but it is another altogether to say that when a Congress person possessing such views successfully survives the democratic ritual -- that he or
she "should not be in the Congress" or "is violating constitutionalism." Surely this is mistaken. Constitutionalism is predicated on harnessing these and other urges to govern one another and making them compete against counter-urges in a structured conflict that makes it hard for any one fixation to capture the whole government.
If you cannot place a God argument in the political marketplace, where do you place it? In the closet? If this were true, what would a god voter do? How would he or she participate? (Compare: those who advocate hate are not allowed to run for election. Only the minimally intelligent can campaign. Stupid voters and candidates are barred from office).
I wonder to what extent this is an argument against a style rather than a substance. "God says do this," versus "my values say do this, and I must vote my principle." Is this in the end not an argument against merely the STYLE of the assertion? (That Style A is now out of fashion?)
... It does not seem defensible.
Dr. Sean Wilson, Esq.
Penn State University
Email discussion group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheLudwigGroup
SSRN papers: http://ssrn.com/author=596860
Conference papers: http://ludwig.squarespace.com/research-agenda/
Curriculum Vitae: http://ludwig.squarespace.com/storage/wilsonvita%5B.pdf
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