Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Using the freedom of religion argument to impose one's will (again)

Joel Hanson, the Nevada Independent American Party candidate for attorney general has filed suit against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 for violating a plethora of his constitutional rights.  For example, forcing him to purchase something is a form of slavery, a violation of Amendment 13.  And the graduate from Brigham Young University, who has been practicing law for three decades, is also worked up over his loss of freedom of religion, the suit
cites Bible passages as if they are legal statutes and makes the argument that the plaintiffs are religious Christians, and that part of their sincerely held religious belief is that "all forms of Socialism are abhorrent and contrary to [the] Christian faith." Hansen writes that he believes that "Socialism and its twin brothers Communism, Fascism, are State/Civic religions" and that "Obamcare[sic]/PPACA, an admittedly socialistic and compelled system of belief, violates the free exercise clause of the First Amendment."
According to Hanson, six lawyers spent three months working on this lawsuit.  And, also according to Hanson, Republican Senatorial candidate Sharron Angle is aware of the suit and supports it.  

From a religious standpoint, the suit may be correct.  There is no real authority or absolute decisions in religion, so who is to say Hanson is wrong?  You may argue that Jesus was actually a socialist, yet it's all a matter of belief with no way to reach a definitive conclusion.  But there are limits to your ability to declare yourself exempt from laws.  It will be interesting to see what the judge who dismisses this case will write on the matter.

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