So what we are going to do with the middle of the roundabout is the question the powers that be are mulling over. I have a suggestion – actually a couple, but only one printable! – how about fill it with cement or rocks? Anything that’s not going to cost us more money for maintenance or repairs or anything else for that matter. You got what you wanted. It”s in, now give us a break and don’t cost us anymore than you already have.
In 1788, our Founding Fathers wrote a Constitution that created the framework of our government. The Constitution includes much general wording; some specifics for sure but they believed (according to the Federalist Papers) additional amendments and Congress would fill in the blanks, so to speak.
In 1803, the Marbury vs. Madison decision completed our system of checks and balances in that the 1803 decision established our Supreme Court having the final say over the meaning of the general words of the Constitution.
Before Marbury vs. Madison and since, Americans have debated how to interpret the Constitution – loosely or strictly? Hamilton vs. Jefferson.
Presidential nominees to the U. S. Supreme Court must be approved by the Senate and during their Senate hearings nominees are asked their position on “interpretation.”
Recent (Trump) Republican nominees were selected from a list of candidates approved by the conservative Federalist Society and nominees had to be “strict interpretation” believers – one of Trump’s campaign promises.
The late Justice Antonin Scalia was the leader of the coalition of current conservative justices. He believed “the Court should interpret and not legislate; if its not specified in the Constitution, it’s not Constitutional.” Scalia rejected the idea of a so-called living constitution that adapts to current situations; he advocated a very strict, conservative interpretation.
Our current Supreme Court has six conservatives with this mindset. The six conservative, versus three liberal, majority is the result of former Senate Majority Leader McConnell’s shenanigans; McConnell’s conservative court is out of step with the majority of Americans on a number of vital issues, e. g. abortion and women’s health – voting rights – gun safety and public safety, etc.
The front runner for the GOP 2024 Presidential nomination, Donald J. Trump, is involved in four current and upcoming civil and criminal court cases.
Also, there are Colorado and Minnesota state court cases challenging Trump being on their states’ 2024 Presidential ballots. Both states cite Section Three of the 14th Amendment: “banning all from holding federal office. . . or any state office who participated in insurrection or rebellion against our government and who had taken an oath of allegiance to the United States Constitution. . . “
Most likely these court decisions will be appealed.
The ultimate question is will the conservative minded Supreme Court majority (three of whom were appointed by Trump) be consistent with their “strict interpretation” of the 14th Amendment as they are with their “strict interpretation” of the Second Amendment.
There will be ramifications regardless the court’s decisions.
The 14th Amendment was ratified in 1865 following the Civil War to exclude CSA leaders from federal office. If the Amendment had also included state and local offices “Jim Crow discrimination laws” would not have been enacted.
The Second Amendment was ratified in 1791 when most of the United States was frontier and wilderness. America had no standing army, no national guard, nor automatic weapon. A flintlock musket was as essential to sustain their agrarian based society as were the iron cooking kettle, ax, and ox.
A violent past
As we see the slaughter of civilians in real time on our TV screens, it would help to remember that the State of Israel was created on stolen land, by Zionist terrorists. The Zionist terror group Irgun, founded in 1931, was headed by Manachem Begin, who later became Prime Minister of Israel. Yitzhak Shamir, a leader of the Zionist terror group Lehi, (aka the Stern Gang) became Prime Minister in 1983. The Irgun and Lehi and other Zionist terror groups, such as the Hagana, terrorized civilians, bombed hotels and other public places, assassinated, murdered and maimed at random.
On July 22, 1946, Irgun blew up a wing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, killing 91 soldiers and civilians (British, Arab, and Jewish). On April 9, 1947, a group of Irgun commandos raided the Arab village of Deir Yassin (modern Kefar Shaʾul), killing about 100 of its inhabitants. Irgun committed acts of terrorism and assassination against the British, and it was also violently anti-Arab. In November 1944 the Zionist terrorist’s assassinated Lord Moyne, Leader of the British House of Lords. In 1948 Folke Bernadotte, a Swedish nobleman and diplomat was assassinated in Jerusalem by the Zionist terror group Lehi. Bernadotte had been unanimously chosen to be the United Nations Security Council mediator in the Arab-Israeli conflict. In World War II he negotiated the release of about 31,000 prisoners from German concentration camps including 450 Danish Jews from the Theresienstadt camp.
The UN Partition Plan of 1947 gave 56% of the land to the proposed Jewish state, despite the fact that Jews owned only about 7% of the private land in Palestine and made up only about 33% of the population, a very large percentage of whom were recent immigrants from Europe.
In 1948 more than 750,000 Palestinians were driven from their homes during the Nakba, or catastrophe. Today, 75 years later, there is a population of 4.56 million Palestine refugees.
Point, the violence in Gaza did not start on Oct 7. Violence has been doled out to the indigenous Palestinian population since the creation of Israel in 1948, on stolen Palestinian land. The brutal, humiliating, suffocating, violent Zionist occupation, which by the way the US government supports with over $4 billion each year, must end. It is the root cause of the violence.
The United Methodist Kairos Project states “God’s people dare not stand by and watch. We dare not be silent or carry on with life as usual while the United States provides support and encouragement for Israel to continue and expand this genocidal horror. As Rabbi Brant Rosen
has written recently, we and the world are faced with what may be “the greatest moral reckoning of our time.”
To be silent is to be complicit.
Caution with Israel
I wanted to comment on the present situation in the Middle East. It seems almost incomprehensible to me how Israeli Intelligence could have missed all the signs of a large-scale attack; this includes warnings from the American and Egyptian governments. Practically every intelligence agency in the western world gets vital information from the Mossad on anything happening on the planet. In addition, Gaza is one of the most surveilled areas in the entire world.
At any rate, wherever the truth lies, Israel needs to be defended. As God told Abraham in the Book of Genesis; those who bless his people are blessed, and those who curse them are cursed. It’s both amazing and frightening the amount of hatred directed toward the Jewish race down through human history. I personally toured the Nazi death camp of Dachau, in Germany, in the 1990s and you could still sense the evil there.
When you finally come to the realization that there is raw evil in this world and the Jewish people were the first to bring knowledge of the plan of salvation to a prodigal planet, much of this becomes clear.
As I said, Israel needs to be aided in its ceaseless struggle to simply exist; but we must be extremely cautious as to where all this is headed. America has been drawn into endless land wars over the last 20 years and have little to show for it. Thousands of our young people have been killed, and thousands more maimed while our government merely shrugs it off and seems anxious to engage in yet another conflict.
One vividly remembers the humiliating withdrawal from Afghanistan and wonders what all the blood, sweat, and tears accomplished.
To further understand the spiritual relevance of all this, I look to the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament. It details the self destruction of a superpower shortly before the return of Jesus Christ. This event is mentioned several times and involves a coalition of nations from the west clashing with modern day Iran and Iraq. The western powers win the war, but shortly after, the superpower that led the attack collapses. Considering America is trillions of dollars in debt, has a border so porous that even terrorists can walk through, and is severely overextended worldwide; perhaps we need to spend more time searching the scriptures and less on sowing the seeds of our own destruction.