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VOL. 11, NO. 2March 27, 2009
How Judges are Winning the Culture War: "Defining and Destroying" "Personhood," II

"Our American institutions and culture are being undermined today by judicial supremacists. They are carrying out a revolution in our system of government . . . ." So wrote Eagle Forum Founder/President and the "First lady of American Conservatism," Phyllis Schlafly, in her highly acclaimed book, The Supremacists: The Tyranny of Judges and How to Stop It.

The deadly phenomena described in the Schlafly expose of Reconstructionist judges are the "Culture War" and judicial victories in that war -- the theme of this series of our "Court Watch Briefings." Our focus is on one of the Reconstructionist judges' most lethal weapons-perhaps THE most lethal weapon -- their "define and destroy" tactic. This tactic can assume two forms:

  1. courts may focus on a term/guarantee that actually appears in the Constitution, but transmogrify the guarantee's meaning so that the guarantee in its original meaning is destroyed;

  2. courts may create new terms/guarantees that have no roots in either America law or tradition and then define those terms in any conflicting way the judges desire, creating and destroying guarantees at will.

In our last "Briefing" we described this weapon as the judges' use of landmark cases to alter the meaning of fundamental constitutional phrases and cultural values -- alterations so radical as to destroy the original meanings. Six such constitutional guarantees/cultural values, most cogently expressed in the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution, have been the particular target of Reconstructionists:

  • personhood
  • life
  • liberty
  • expression/thought
  • religion
  • law.

Because of the nature of these six issues and the courts' handling of them, not only the Constitution, but the entire culture has suffered, as Reconstructionists' rulings have corrupted major societal institutions. In this series of studies, therefore, we shall examine each of these six guarantees/values from three perspectives:

  1. the form into which Reconstructionists have corrupted the Constitutional term/guarantee, virtually destroying it;
  2. the societal institution corrupted and/or being destroyed;
  3. landmark court decisions which have been pivotal in this "define and destroy" campaign.

Today we consider the first in this list: "person[hood]." "Personhood" is the cornerstone of our Constitution and our culture. "We the People of the United States" is the opening statement of the Constitution. The five other phrases/values of our study are guaranteed to "persons." Indeed, the individual "person" is the building block of society. Webster makes this clear: a "society" is "an organized group of persons associated together [for a variety of purposes], "a body of individual [human beings-i.e., persons] living together as members of a community" (Webster's Universal College Dictionary, 2001, emphases added). When the concept of "personhood" is corrupted or destroyed, therefore, society in totality is the institution corrupted or destroyed. Such wanton destruction is exactly the damage inflicted by Reconstructionists judges in their worst decisions.

A "terrible trio" of U. S. Supreme Court decisions has spawned and energized the ongoing judicial attack on "personhood" as a constitution/cultural concept and on society as an institution. This trio includes the two basic pro-abortion decisions, Roe v. Wade (1973) and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania (1992), and the pro-evolutionist censorship decision in Edwards v. Aguillard (1987). This trio of cases excises from our constitutional and cultural vocabulary the definition of "person" foundational to American society.

Webster makes the meaning of "person" clear: a "person" is "a human being, a man, woman, or child," "a human being, as distinguished from an animal or thing" (Webster, 2001, emphasis added). But the judges' pro-abortion, pro-evolutionistic exclusivism (recognizing as valid only the theory of evolutionism and its innumerable corollaries to the exclusion of creationist theory and its corollaries) have destroyed Webster's definition of "person."

The Roe Court was blatant in its denial of "personhood" -- "[the evidence we have examined] persuades us that the word 'person,' as used in the Fourteenth Amendment, does not include the unborn." "Personhood" under this standard depends totally on the residence of the living being. No unborn child -- a baby still in its mother's body -- is a "person." But what if that child still residing inside his/her mother's body were conceived eight months and thirty days ago, while another child conceived eight months and twenty-nine days ago has "been born" -- has exited the mother's body and now resides outside the mother? The younger child is a "person," while the older one is not. This position is surpassed in its absurdity only by its deadliness.

The 1992 Casey Court had the opportunity to rescue the Constitution and culture from such judicial insanity, but refused to do so -- for reasons that almost make Roe's illogic look acceptable. The 1992 Court actually admitted the possibility of Roe's being in error. In a badly divided set of opinions, the plurality opinion declared that even if "the central holding of Roe was in error," the Court would not over-rule Roe. Or again, ". . . any error in Roe is unlikely to have serious ramifications in future cases" (emphases added)

The plurality offered this lame defense of its side-stepping of the "error" issue: "We are satisfied that the immediate question [we must decide here] is not the soundness of Roe's resolution of the issue, but the precedential force that must be accorded to its holding. And we have concluded that the essential holding of Roe should be reaffirmed." Why such anti-constitutional anti-intelligent intransigence? In order to "protect the Court's legitimacy and the rule of law." And in a statement that further drives sound minds to distraction, the Court asserted the incredible: ". . . a decision to overrule [a precedent] should rest on some special reason over and above the belief that a prior case was wrongly decided."

The diabolical heart of the matter was acknowledged by the Roe Court, however, in rejecting "the suggestion of personhood [of the unborn]" when that august body baldly admitted that "If this suggestion of personhood is established, the appellant's case (for abortion), of course, collapses, for the fetus's right to life is then guaranteed specifically by the Amendment. The appellant conceded as such on re-argument." Casey's pro-abortion Justices could not let this happen. Rejection the "personhood" of the unborn is a tactical and policy necessity -- not a constitutional or cultural truth -- if the Reconstructionist/Humanist agenda for capturing our Constitution and conquering our culture is to succeed. The abortion cases thus corrupt the Constitutional recognition of "personhood" to viewing man as only an "animal," and corrupt the entire society as an institution.

But if the unborn child is not a "person," what is he/she? According to Webster's definition quoted above, a "non-person" must be either an "animal" or a "thing." Since the child is alive, he/she cannot be just a "thing." The child must, therefore, be an animal.

This conclusion is consistent with the Court's most recent creationism v. evolutionism decision, in Edwards v. Aguillard (1987), where the Court placed its imprimatur on the teaching of evolution-only in the public schools. The impact of this decision was to place the weight of the government's power behind the belief and teaching that man is only an animal. Thus, Aguillard and the abortion cases lead to the same dastardly conclusion, except that the abortion cases focus on the unborn human being as an animal, while the Court's "man-as-animal" finding in Aguillard applies to all people.

We shall pursue a fuller examination of Aguillard in a later "Briefing." But what we have already said forcefully reminds us that we must be vigilant as Barak Obama begins naming his choices for federal judgeships. Obama has just announced his first judicial nominee -- U.S. District Judge David Hamilton of Indiana to be elevated to the U. S. Seventh Court of Appeals in Chicago. The conservative Judicial Confirmation Network quickly responded, describing Hamilton as an "ultra-liberal" and "former leader of the Indiana ACLU chapter." As District Judge, Hamilton threw out Christian prayers in the Indiana Legislature and an Indiana abortion regulation. Both of these decisions were over-turned by the Seventh Circuit. We must have Constitutionalist judges committed to protecting the "personhood" of all human beings!


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