May Crosses Be Displayed at War Memorials?

Two days ago I had the opportunity to do a radio debate with Dr. Jeremy Gunn, Director of the ACLU's Religious Freedom Project. Let me say at the outset that I found Dr. Gunn to be a courteous and intellectually honest man, and I am grateful for his willingness to discuss with those having a different point of view the often heated question whether the Cross may properly, under the First Amendment, be displayed on government property as part of a war memorial to fallen soldiers.I am in no positon to make a judgment about who "won" this debate. Those who had the chance to listen to [...]

2007-06-01T11:19:47-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

What Exactly Is Given Sanctuary in "Sanctuary Cities?"

Scott Johnson of Power Line tells us what gets sanctuary in “sanctuary cities” in his shocking report, which I repeat in full below. To give the short answer, what gets sanctuary is human trafficking and sex slavery.When the police turn a blind eye to the law — when they are ordered turn a blind eye — what exactly did we think was going to happen?Read Scott’s report: […]

2007-05-31T17:52:57-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

Thomas Sowell Speaks Up on Immigration

The ACRU does not lobby for or against pending legislation. This does not prevent us from joining an important national debate, however, by bringing readers the views of others (and sometimes our own) on issues relevant to the discussion. Many of these issues, if not all of them, long pre-existed the introduction of the immigration bill presently before Congress.Below, I re-produce in full a piece by the brilliant Thomas Sowell. For full disclosure purposes, I should add that I was a teaching assistant for Professor Sowell a mere 38 years ago, when he had a dank basement office in the Economics Department of Cornell University. He went [...]

2007-05-24T09:39:04-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

Let the Voters Decide—For a Day, Anyway

Many readers will remember that Farmers Branch, Texas, a Dallas suburb, recently enacted an ordinance to the effect that landlords may not rent to illegal immigrants. The ordinance went to a vote after a pro-illegal immigrant group waged a vigorous campaign to, as they put it, "Let the Voters Decide." The voters promplty did so. By a margin of 68% to 32%, they decided to adopt the ordinance.Without missing a beat, it then became time to "Let the Court Decide," a strategy the previously pro-vote group has now pursued. Yesterday they obtained, from a federal judge appointed by President Clinton, a preliminary injunction barring enforcement of the [...]

2007-05-22T15:11:39-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

The Farmers Branch Absurdity

Farmers Branch, a small Texas town near Dallas, passed an ordinance imposing penalties on landlords who might rent their apartments to illegal aliens. The act included a requirement that the voters must approve it. In an exceptional turnout last Saturday, the voters did approve, 68% to 32%.The ACLU and various parties took the town to court, claiming that the ordinance was unconstitutional. The court then ruled that the councilmen and residents of Farmers Branch are too stupid to govern themselves, substituted its judgment for theirs, and struck the ordinance as unconstitutional.No, that's not the stated reason for the decision of US District Judge Sam Lindsay for issuing [...]

Will DC Appeal Parker Case to the Supreme Court?

I am beginning to think it is quite possible that DC will not appeal the ruling of the DC Circuit Court of Appeals in the Parker case. That historic ruling concluded that the Second Amendment really does protect an individual's right to keep and bear arms and struck down the DC gun control laws as a result.DC may instead pass a new gun control law that is still quite severe but does not as thoroughly prohibit any right to gun ownership and use in self defense as the old law did. They would argue that this new law meets the requirements of the Parker ruling.I think that [...]

2007-05-17T20:13:46-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

Disrespect for Law Doesn't Always Stop Where You Think It Will

A Reuters article published yesterday ("Workers sue U.S. factory after immigration raid") reports that several hundred illegal immigrant workers at a plant south of Boston have sued the company for cheating them on their wages. The article portrays the illegal immigrants as victims -- of the government's raid, and of factory management's greed -- but there is a different way to look at it.About a month ago, I wrote in this space that the foremost reason to oppose "sanctuary cities" and their indulgence of illegal immigration is that these things sow disrespect for the rule of law:"If elected officials pretending to be leaders can turn their backs [...]

2007-05-16T16:37:46-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

Local Front in Battle to Restore Rule of Law for Immigration Receives Bipartisan Boost

Who says standing against illegal immigration and the consequences thereof is a political loser?The ACRU has been fighting in support of the mayor of Hazelton, PA and his effort to crack down on landlords and employers who create the demand for and perpetuate the problem of illegal immigration, and the criminological ills and financial burdens that come with it, in his town and similar municipalities across America. Our own John Armor has described the issue very well in his article, "The Hazelton Rebellion."Predictably, the ACLU has lined up on behalf of those who break our laws and against the democratic rule of legal citizens at the local [...]

2007-05-16T14:49:08-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

Are Some Crime Victims More Worthy of Protection than Others?

The Washington Post editorialized in its on-line edition yesterday in favor of the Hate Crimes bill recently passed by the House. The editorial is well wide of the mark, but in order to allow readers to draw their own conclusions, I repeat the editorial in full below before stating the bases of my disagreement with it:"THE LOCAL Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2007 (HR 1592) cleared a major hurdle this month when the House of Representatives passed the bill, 237 to 180. Why is this a big deal? Because if it passes the Senate, which could vote on it next month, and gets past a [...]

2007-05-15T22:41:28-04:00Categories: OPED|Tags: , , , , |

The ACLU Takes on James Madison and the Founders on School Prayer

When James Madison penned the Bill of Rights in 1789, surely the idea of blocking local school children in Monroe, LA in 2007 from solemnizing their graduation ceremony with prayer was his intent, right? After all, he objected to official prayers, Thanksgiving proclamations to God, congressional chaplains, and worship meetings held in federal buildings while in the first congresses under the new Constitution, didn't he?Well, no.In fact, when Madison's good friend Thomas Jefferson - no Christian he, and often cited for support from those seeking a radical "wall of separation" between government and all things religious - did things that would make today's ACLU go berserk, Madison [...]