Friday, September 18, 2015

Vindicated: Navy Finds No Fault in Christian Chaplain Who Comforted Dead Sailor's Family — Charisma News

In their recent coverage concerning the Modder Matter, Charisma made the following statement,
While the Liberty Institute defended Chaplain Modder against these bogus charges in Navy proceedings, AFA Action Alert supporters flooded members of Congress with an amazing 75,395 emails, faxes and phone calls, urging that elected officials stop this witch hunt by homosexual hate.

There's no doubt that elected officials got involved as a result of the urging of these supporters. We know that many representatives and senators contacted Navy leaders after hearing from them.

Today, we're pleased to announce that the U.S. Navy has completely exonerated Chaplain Modder from the bogus charges!
I want you to read that again, focusing on this, "AFA Action Alert supporters flooded members of Congress with an amazing 75,395 emails, faxes and phone calls,,, U.S. Navy has completely exonerated Chaplain Modder" and it's implications for future jurisprudence.

Since when does public sentiment - 75,395 emails, faxes and phone calls - have any say in a matter before a court (whether military or civilian).
Politically-correct forces want to drive religious liberty and influence from key areas of American society, including the U.S. Military.
As Chaplain Modder’s legal defense moves forward, Americans need to support Chaplain Modder and stand up for the religious freedom of chaplains, and other brave members of our armed forces.
The law is on the side of Chaplain Modder, all chaplains, and all members of the U.S. Military who want to exercise their faith.  But a public outcry is needed to wake up officials so that violations like this come to a stop. [Emphasis in original]
Since when are members of the judiciary allowed to become activist judges? Oh, that's right, when the ruling suits those within the Reich and their agenda.  "Today, we're pleased to announce that the U.S. Navy has completely exonerated Chaplain Modder from the bogus charges!"  And no, I am not insinuating that took place in this case,
But a high-level review at Navy Personnel Command rejected the commander's recommendation to fire the chaplain, a move that will clear the way for Modder to retire in good standing as he nears his 20th year of service.

Top Navy officials said there was limited hard evidence of Modder's alleged misconduct. Investigating chaplains is uniquely difficult because conversations between service members and chaplains are typically considered confidential.

"There is no documentation of poor performance in his personnel record," said one official familiar with the investigation, who asked for anonymity to discuss a personnel decision.
But what I find so fascinating, the hypocrisy of it all - activist judge(s) for me, not for thee - forgetting what Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor once opined, in McCreary County v. American Civil Liberties Union (2005).
By enforcing the Clauses, we have kept religion a matter for the individual conscience, not for the prosecutor or bureaucrat. At a time when we see around the world the violent consequences of the assumption of religious authority by government, Americans may count themselves fortunate: Our regard for constitutional boundaries has protected us from similar travails, while allowing private religious exercise to flourish.,,, Those who would renegotiate the boundaries between church and state must therefore answer a difficult question: Why would we trade a system that has served us so well for one that has served others so poorly?
When the government associates one set of religious beliefs with the state and identifies nonadherents as outsiders, it encroaches upon the individual’s decision about whether and how to worship. In the marketplace of ideas, the government has vast resources and special status. Government religious expression therefore risks crowding out private observance and distorting the natural interplay between competing beliefs. Allowing government to be a potential mouthpiece for competing religious ideas risks the sort of division that might easily spill over into suppression of rival beliefs. Tying secular and religious authority together poses risks to both.

It is true that many Americans find the Commandments in accord with their personal beliefs. But we do not count heads before enforcing the First Amendment,,, There is no list of approved and disapproved beliefs appended to the First Amendment—and the Amendment’s broad terms (“free exercise,” “establishment,” “religion”) do not admit of such a cramped reading. It is true that the Framers lived at a time when our national religious diversity was neither as robust nor as well recognized as it is now. They may not have foreseen the variety of religions for which this Nation would eventually provide a home. They surely could not have predicted new religions, some of them born in this country. But they did know that line-drawing between religions is an enterprise that, once begun, has no logical stopping point. They worried that “the same authority which can establish Christianity, in exclusion of all other Religions, may establish with the same ease any particular sect of Christians, in exclusion of all other Sects.”. The Religion Clauses, as a result, protect adherents of all religions, as well as those who believe in no religion at all.*
In other words, what O'Connor and the Court is saying, no activist judges (or politician for that matter) in regards to maintaining the wall between religion and government.  They must remain neutral and rule according to applicable law and precedent.  This point echoes O'Connor's concurrence in Lynch v. Donnelly (1984) as well.
The Establishment Clause prohibits government from making adherence to a religion relevant in any way to a person's standing in the political community,,, The second and more direct infringement is government endorsement or disapproval of religion. Endorsement sends a message to nonadherents that they are outsiders, not full members of the political community, and an accompanying message to adherents that they are insiders, favored members of the political community. Disapproval sends the opposite message. 
But here is the kicker and why I say that the Reich is being hypocritical in their stance concerning the Modder Matter and other faux persecution case (cough,,,cough,,,Kim Davis).  The losing lawyer in McCreary, none other than Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel.  Though not associated professionally with Kelly Shackelford's Liberty Institute, they are compadres within the Reich and share the same agenda.  What was being argued, a reformulation or abandonment of the "Lemon test"  as set forth in Lemon v. Kurtzman (1971), which applies to religious displays on government property and to other Establishment Clause issues.

Although Shackelford et al prevailed in this case, the tactics employed - petitioning those within the political and judiciary community - are clearly outside the bounds of established precedent.  The Reich can bitch all they want about activist judges, but before they do they need to take a very long look in the mirror.

*FYI:: In November 2010, counties in Kentucky filed a new appeal to the Supreme Court. In February 2011, the Supreme Court without comment declined to review the case.

Vindicated: Navy Finds No Fault in Christian Chaplain Who Comforted Dead Sailor's Family — Charisma News

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