Monday, October 18, 2004

Pledge Protection Act: Latest from Republican Congress

A friend gave me a tip about the Pledge Protection Act, which the House Judiciary Committee has just sent to the full house for a vote.

Marci Hamilton at CNN breaks it down for us:

The Act -- a bill that has many cosponsors -- would deprive all federal courts, even the Supreme Court, of jurisdiction to hear constitutional challenges to the "under God" Pledge of Allegiance.

This is only the latest attempt by Congress to force a pluralist society into a one-size-fits-all set of beliefs.

This is a remarkable violation of the separation of powers and the Establishment Clause. If the Act were to become law -- and if it were, itself, to be upheld as constitutional -- only state courts would be able to hear constitutional challenges to the pledge.

We would therefore have a 50-state collection of views as to what the Free Exercise Clause, and the Establishment Clause, mean in this context. And that would be constitutional lunacy.

Moreover, we would have Congress making its actions that involve compelled speech and religious viewpoint unreviewable!

I have a feeling that the lemmings in the House will pass this, and I'm sure George Bush would sign it. But I don't see it getting through the Senate...

No comments: