The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

September 15, 2012

Our Readers Speak — Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012


Constitution protects rights, not beliefs

I have performed more than 50 wedding ceremonies and consider them to be “Holy Matrimony,” and I believe that same-sex marriages are detrimental to society. However, certain rights are afforded to each individual in society by the Constitution of the United States.

I find the writer’s opinions in “consider the term holy matrimony” very puzzling. The first being “pool of blood.” If he is referring to the estrus of female humans, he should know that many female mammals also go through recurring menstrual periods and sexual receptivity and fertility.

The second problem arises from his believing that Supreme Court decisions can be based on someone’s interpretation of the Bible.

The Constitution of the United States of America is a secular document. It makes no mention of God or the Bible, by the design of its Framers. They knew that any notion of a particular religion within the Constitution would only bring about chaos. After all, many of the important men of that day were Deists, and at least a few, such as Ben Franklin, were agnostics.

Thomas Jefferson is perhaps the best known Deist. His writings make it clear that he despised any notion that Jesus was supernatural, much less the Son of God. Jefferson says in a letter to John Adams, a fellow Deist, dated April 11, 1823: “And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classified with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter.”

I happen to believe that Jesus is the Son of God; however, I believe folk need to know that the Constitution of the United States was never meant to be construed as a socially or a politically conservative document.

“Rule of law” is not a term meaning “enforce the ideologies of the socially conservative populace.” It actually means rules that have been decided by the aggregate members of society to facilitate an ordered society, i.e., security of personal safety for each member of the society and secure possession of personal property for each member of the society.

This is the guarantee that the Constitution of the United States of America affords all its citizens. There must be equal protection for all citizens, regardless of  their religious or moral beliefs, so long as no harm is done to the aggregate members of society.

An outcome in the Court is right not because it is derived from immutable principles, but because it was reached by following the correct procedures. The modern concept of law is not based upon divine revelation, but civil law that withstands the intent of the Constitution. If the legal process is adhered to, the outcome is just.

Jennings M. Angell