Rachel "Sparks" Blackman (seattlesparks) wrote,
Rachel "Sparks" Blackman

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Okay, normally I don't post political stuff in my journal, but this, linked from technoshaman's journal, is something which unsettles me slightly.

I admit, being an engineer and not a legal sort, I don't know precisely how to read HR 3799 (the original text is available from Thomas, just enter 'HR 3799' for the bill), but the analysis in jmthane's journal unnerves me slightly, even though I'm not sure every element of it is accurate.

For those who don't want to follow the link or wade through the legal text on HR 3799, what it appears to do is declare that 'the Supreme Court shall not have jurisdiction to review, by appeal, writ of certiorari, or otherwise, any matter to the extent that relief is sought against an element of Federal, State, or local government, or against an officer of Federal, State, or local government (whether or not acting in official personal capacity), by reason of that element's or officer's acknowledgement of God as the sovereign source of law, liberty, or government.'

Which basically seems to mean if this passes, the Supreme Court does not have the authority to handle cases where someone accuses a government official of not respecting separation of church and state; if someone proposes a new law saying that all businesses must be closed on Sunday because God hath decreed it so, the federal government has no authority to stop them. Additionally, this bill is retroactive, so any previous separation-of-church-and-state cases are to be considered invalid precedent and overturnable by any state court which wants to?

I'm not sure, I'm not really a legal sort, as I said, but something about this bill unsettles me.
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