Equal Rights? Pssshhhaww : Citizens United is back! This time to advocate… segregation???
By David DeWitt
Well the nation’s favorite political sugar daddy advocates are at it again.
That’s right, Citizens United, the group that brought you unlimited, unaccountable campaign spending, is back, bigger, badder and uncut. This time around they’re pouring their legal resources and unlimited funds into giving full-throated support for the Defense of Marriage Act.
And oh, but how!
In an amicus legal briefing filed with the Supreme Court of the United States (or SCOTUS to the beltway types), Citizens United is arguing that SCOTUS itself was wrong to rule against segregation in the seminal 1954 case Brown vs. Board of Education with regard to the Fourteenth Amendment, as well as in Bolling v. Sharpe w/r/t the Fifth Amendment.
The federal government, Citizens United maintains, is under no obligation to protect, well, anybody from discrimination of any kind. Not ethnic minorities. Not women. Not the physically or developmentally disabled. Certainly not homey-sexchuls.
In one of the more hilarious briefings I’ve had the pleasure to derisively laugh at, Citizens United argues that the court “shoehorned equal protection into the due process (Fifth Amendment) text by sheer will” in the Bolling case when SCOTUS ruled that “it would be unthinkable that the same Constitution would impose a lesser duty on the Federal Government” to not discriminate as it does to the individual states in the Fourteenth Amendment.
So there you have it, folks. Liberal judicial activism holding the federal government to the same standards under the Fifth Amendment as it does the states under the Fourteenth.
The federal government, Citizens United argues, is actually free to discriminate as it pleases. Willy-nilly, if you will.
Moreover, they argue, this is so because—by jove—they’ve done it before! From 1905 to 1930 we have precedent of judicial discrimination—by turning a blind eye to it—in due process! (Not to mention a slew of other embarrassing periods not specifically cited by Citizens U., up until and including today)
But why not anymore, they protest. Dagnabbitt. Why can’t we continue to discriminate? Why not anymore?
Why not anymore? Well, in what way exactly would it be appropriate for our federal government to continue to discriminate, or ignore discrimination, against certain segments of the population, because, y’know, well, Citizens United says so?
To answer that we have to turn to holy Christian text, sayeth Citizens United.
CU argues that “by secularizing marriage,” the court of appeals in this case has “disregarded the historical interrelationship between Biblical Christianity and the American Constitutional Republic.”
And lo, may we all tremble, moan and wail.
“Indeed, the courts give no regard whatsoever to the originator and definer of marriage who created us male and female (see Genesis 1:26-28) and enabled male and female couples to procreate offspring in his image (see Genesis 5:1-3).”
HiYo! They’re citing Genesis as a legit source of constitutional legal reference. Hasten to Montpelier! James Madison must be spinning like a top.
Let’s just make sure everybody is keeping up.
According to Citizens United:
The First Amendment and free speech? That applies to corporations and campaign donations, because, y’know this government has to be bought and sold unaccountably somehow. Don’t Tread on Me!
The First Amendment and separation of church and state? That applies to non-Christians only. Christianity should have an intricate role in shaping the laws of our land. In (My) God We Trust!
The Fourteenth Amendment, the Fifth Amendment, and equal protection under the law? The federal government has no obligation to protect anybody from discrimination, not minorities, not women or the disabled, and definitely not now the gay community. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, but by cracky, they don’t have to be treated that way in our legal system!
Protection of rights only applies to rich campaign donors, see? And the “rights” of Christians to interfere with the rights of others. And we’d all be better off if the rest of us just shut the hell up about it already.
About the Author: A journalist, sportswriter, raconteur, bon vivant, enthusiast, freshwater mariner, registered universal minister and man of sports and leisure tucked away too far from Lake Erie in the foothills of Appalachian Ohio. Twitter: @TheRevDeWitt.