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Saturday, October 15, 2005

Miers, the Shifting Right, and Dred Scott

I was talking with my friend, Juan, the other day about Harriet Miers. His stance was that we aren't going to get anyone less objectionable, and there is some evidence that Miers may be somewhat moderate, so Dems should go ahead and go along with her nomination.

Apparently, Miers once stated that she supported civil rights for gays. As I told Juan, you can't take that to mean what it means today. Harriet Miers is a member of a strict conservative fundamentalist evangelical church. As someone who grew up attending churches like this, let me explain:

An "evangelical" is someone who believes the Bible is the literal word of God - every word within it is meant to be taken it its most common and ordinary sense as the 100% pure, unadulterated truth. As a preacher once said to me, "The Bible said Jonah was swallowed by a fish - not a whale. That means you can't talk about Jonah being in a whale because a whale isn't a fish. You have to believe it is a fish, but obviously a big enough one to hold a man. If the Bible meant whale, it would say whale. It doesn't. It's trying to show that God saved Jonah by divine intervention through a common fish." Yeah, it's a small point. You have to understand, though, that if they are going to argue that "fish" can't possibly mean "whale" (when did "whale" actually begin to refer to an animal that wasn't a fish?), then they are talking about the strictest literal interpretation possible.

A "fundamentalist" is someone who wants civil law to be written in accordance with, and under the authority of, divine law. There is no possible way for civil law to hold any authority when it violates divine law. Which, if you look at the paragraph above, and you take it with the Biblical warnings not to change one letter of the Bible, then you would very quickly see that it really wants a civil law that would prevent any interpretation or teaching of the Bible other than their own. You would literally be sent to jail for saying that Jonah was held in the belly of a whale, and not a fish.

"Conservative" is where all of the interpretation lies. It's what makes it imperative for Democrats and moderate Republicans to oppose Harriet Miers' nomination in the strongest possible way. You see, today's debate considers the biggest issue in gay "civil rights" to be marriage. I can assure you, this is not what Harriet Miers had on her mind in the late 1980s in Dallas. The proof of this lies directly below on that questionaire when she states that she opposed consensual sex that is considered to be an affront to God - because the fundamentalist evangelical interpretation of the Bible says very clearly that it is so. "Civil rights", to the woman who signed the questionaire, meant the right to vote, to own property, to be free from unlawful search and seizure. It most assuredly wass not, in any manner, meant to construe support for homosexuals having a legal union recognized by law.

It is important because of the two conservative activist judges already working on the Supreme Court - one of which, Clarence Thomas, has decided that prison is a good place to give birth. Or, to put it more succinctly, a convicted woman has lost the right to claim her body as her own. The state's right to not spend money is more important than a woman's right to have adequate medical care. You have to wonder if Justice Thomas has put ten seconds worth of thought of what will happen to the baby after it is born in a prison hospital wing. Does the state have a right to deny health care to the child, since it is technically the woman who is imprisoned and not the baby?

Well, that doesn't matter at all for Harriet Miers. Abortion is wrong, no matter what. In this best of all possible worlds, we should praise God that He has, in His infinite wisdom has decided that prison is, indeed, the best place for this child to be born. After all, our Lord was born in a feed stall and look how good He turned out!

They understand that they don't even have to rule on the case. After all, in just five short weeks, the law will have made the case moot - Missouri law does not allow abortions after 22 weeks. They can allow arguments to draw out, then drop the case for lack of standing. All the while, they are snickering up their Hallelujah sleeve that they have forced a woman to "pay the price of her sins" or "live up to her responsibility". All the while, they have condemned another child to a soul-destroying life.

Juan argued that the President will never nominate anyone more acceptable. I argued that it is unknown how acceptable Harriet Miers is. The stressing of her Evangelical faith is the equivalent of the President's Dred Scott debate comment. It's how the President is reaching out to his base without exposing his real position - or hers - because liberals are too damn stubborn to learn how to talk to Christians.

I agree that we are not going to get a liberal - or even a moderate - nominee out of this Administration. What we can do is force them to play openly and honestly and state what they are really trying to do. That was what the Dred Scott decision was really all about.


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