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Saturday, October 01, 2005

Nature and Nature's God - how did they vote on Civil Unions?


Today's the day...

Here's my question: does a State Legislature even have the power to invent "civil unions?" Professor Bradley Watson writes:

"Henry Herbert, the second Earl of Pembroke, said that Parliament can do anything but make a man into a woman. In this remark, he was pointing to the idea that some things exist in nature, and Parliament, while supreme over human affairs, was not omnipotent. Parliament is, ultimately, a human institution that lacks power when it comes to controlling the articulations of nature and nature's God— the most fundamental and self-evident of which is the man-woman distinction and the natural consequences of it. It is also worth noting that Pembroke was speaking only of Parliament, not of the far more hubristic, nominally common-law courts of America, which have come much closer to toying with the order of nature than Parliament ever dreamed possible. We can now foresee the day when, in effect, courts will routinely declare men to be women, and vice versa, according to the political pressures of the age."

The phrase "nature and nature's God" also appears in an ancient document which is no longer read by our citizenry and which, if it were proposed to day, would be shot down as unconstitutional because of its religious references. I'm speaking, of course, of the Declaration of Independence. The Declaration not only speaks of Divine Providence (the active working of the God of the Bible in history) and the Creator (referring to the active working of the God of the Bible as He makes all human beings in His image, thereby giving them inalienable rights and dignity), it also speaks of the laws of nature and Nature's God.

Thus, our founders understood that the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government were fenced in by natural law as well as the Christian consensus of society as revealed in the primary Judeo-Christian text, the Bible. There were certain things which could not be legislated (to say nothing of their being imposed by judicial power) even if a large segment of society agitated for them because society as a whole understood that they were contrary to the way human society was designed to function. We would say nowadays that they had no paradigm that would enable them to conceive of legislating such a thing.

Reason and experience, in addition to Scripture, taught our ancestors that the legislature has no power to destroy and, indeed, should only proceed very carefully to regulate, the relations between parents and children, or spouses. Thus there could be no government-sanctioned abortion, nor easy divorce, nor sodomy, nor civil union, nor tolerance of sharia law in Western nations - whether they were Protestant or Catholic nations.

Who or what gave our legislators and our governor the authority to obliterate the very definition of civil society as we know it has existed across the entire world for literally millenia?

Maybe it's time we started asking our legislators harder questions.

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