Saturday, October 23, 2010

If You Vote for Christine O'Donnell, You are Officially an Idiot

In a recent debate at Widener University Law School, Christine O'Donnell challenged her opponent, Chris Coons, to tell her where the Constitution calls for separation of church and state.

I have heard a lot of right wing idiots in my time declare, almost always in the following words, "Nowhere in the Constitution does it say there should be separation of church and state." It's pathetic that these people don't know how wrong they are. They have apparently never read the Bill of Rights, and if they have, they don't understand them. It's beyond sad that we have so many people in the US who are completely ignorant of the rights and privileges they are afforded under their own government.

When Coons explained to O'Donnell the important bit about the First Amendment, she responded "You're telling me that's in the First Amendment?"

I'm not even going to comment on her politics. I am going to say she knows nothing about the Constitution of the United States. And if you vote for someone who has no understanding of the rights she is going to take an oath to defend, you deserve everything that happens to you.

You are an idiot.


MC said...

See, the messed up thing is one of the platforms of the Tea Party is that they are supposed to be strict constitutionalists.

So yeah, that is an epic fail there.

James said...

James here. Yeah, this woman is bullshit, and the fact that anyone can get behind her after this exchange is embarrassing. Here’s a facebook exchange on my page relating to the incident. The names have been changed to protect anonymity. The kicker? Everyone in this conversation is a recently graduated lawyer.

MY FACEBOOK STATUS: Christine O'Donnell's debate with Chris Coon where the separation of church and state was pointed out to her. Hilarious and terrifying at the same time. Seriously, this is what you get when you put out Sarah Palin approved candidates.

{video presented here}

BRIAN: Funny that Coon could not name the other 4 rights protected by the First Amendment... Sounds like he needs a little education too.

ASHLEY: ‎"The concept of a “wall” of separation is a useful figure of speech probably deriving from views of Thomas Jefferson. The metaphor has served as a reminder that the Establishment Clause forbids an established church or anything approaching it. But the metaphor itself is not a wholly accurate description of the practical aspects of the relationship that in fact exists between church and state."
Lynch v. Donnelly, 465 U.S. 668, 673 (1984).

I suppose Justice Brennan is one of those "hilarious and terrifying" "Sarah Palin approved candidates"?

DAVID: Get me some bricks, I'll help stack.

BILL: @Ashley - you really believe she was being metaphorical?! I think you're giving her a little too much credit there. She's lied in the past about attending a University where she studied 'Constitutional government'. That might work on a resume, but not in real life.

James said...

AMY: She implied the First Amendment does not say "separation of church and state." She's right. He stated that the First Amendment says that the government may make no law establishing a religion. He's wrong. "Congress may make no law respecting the establishment of religion." That's a small but important difference in the context of local school board control. (And yes, I know about incorporation via the Fourteenth. But that's First Amendment jurisprudence, not the actual text.)

I think she's generally a dunderhead and an embarrassment, but slam her on the topics she's actually wrong about.

ME: @Brian- why would he need to address the rest of the rights bestowed by the first amendment? She asked (and I quote): "where in the constitution is the separation of church and state?" His answer was "The first amendment," and then spoke about the establishment clause.

@Ashley- While I understand that there is not the explicit language saying "there shall be separation of church and state" in the constitution, the whole point was that she did not understand that the Establishment Clause essentially creates separation of church and state in order to function. Even after he quotes to her in part the language of the establishment clause, she asks incredulously, "that's in the first amendment?" It's pretty obvious that she doesn't know the law or the constitution, and given the position she wants to have, it's really embarrassing.

BILL: Point seconded James.

As for your claim that the establishment clause is not intended in part as a prevention of state-sponsored religion, you're wrong Amy. Article 6 paragraph 3's 'no religious test for office' language shows that the framers did not intend for there to be a state preference to any religion, thus no state-sponsored religion. Reaffirmed by Everson v. Bd. of Edu. and later in Torcaso using the same rationale, the Court said:

"The 'establishment of religion' clause of the First Amendment means at least this: Neither a state nor the Federal Government can set up a church. Neither can pass laws which aid one religion, aid all religions or prefer one religion over another. Neither can force nor influence a person to go to or to remain away from church against his will or force him to profess a belief or disbelief in any religion. No person can be punished for entertaining or professing religious beliefs or disbeliefs, for church attendance or non-attendance. No tax in any amount, large or small, can be levied to support any religious activities or institutions, whatever they may be called, or whatever form they may adopt to teach or practice religion. Neither a state nor the Federal Government can, openly or secretly, participate in the affairs of any religious organizations or groups and vice versa. In the words of Jefferson, the clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect 'a wall of separation between Church and State.'

I see your Justice Brennan, and I raise you a Justice Black.

ME: I think it would've been awesome if Justice Black ended every statement with "fool." Also, if he were Shaft

Roger Owen Green said...

I accept the nuanced notion that James addressed, but still...she's going to be, if elected, writing laws based not only on the Constitution, including the 14th Amendment, but over 2 centuries of jurisprudence; clearly, she's clueless. If she were making the nuanced argument James is, I'd accept it. But I saw the debate, and she was just vapid.

Creekwalker said...

The conservatives fail to understand both the first and second amendments. Two things that scare the pants off of me is the armed theocracy we seem to be headed towards and the lack of a way to prevent it -- my vote negates only one of the opposition's and they won't listen to a fact-based argument.

Tallulah Morehead said...

"if you vote for someone who has no understanding of the rights she is going to take and oath to defend, you deserve everything that happens to you."

Perhaps, but do those of us who would rather cut off our arms than use them to vote for a teabagger deserve what will happen to us if this moron is elected?