judges

First It Was The Twinkie Defense, Now Will It Be, "Magnets Made Me Do It"?

Criminals have concocted, "experts" have agreed with and society has accepted over the years, some of the most extraordinary excuses for illegal behavior. "Temporary insanity" comes to mind. How about the absurd "Twinkie Defense" used by the murderer of San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk? Now, we may have another wacky defense on the horizon. According to a new report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, via Discovery News, scientists from MIT, Harvard and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center . . .  

are able to scramble the moral center of the brain, making it more difficult for people to separate innocent intentions from harmful outcomes. The research could have big implications for not only neuroscientists, but also for judges and juries.

In a test, subjects read a story while scientists applied a magnetic field using a method known as transcranial magnetic stimulation. The magnetic fields created confusion in the neurons that make up a certain part of the brain, causing the subjects to conclude different moral judgments about the story. The scientists admit the differences weren't dramatically different and that in order for a jury to be affected, there's have to be one pretty big magnet hanging over them.

Still, we're not surprised such research is going on and that it's caught the attention of some enterprising ne'er-do-well and criminal defense lawyer, not to mention scoundrel politician. Just remember that when the next sensational crime hits the headlines, and the suspect claims the magnet defense, or a lawyer claims jury tampering by magnet, you read it here first.

Kaine Not Showing "Empathy" To Chickens

Despite his boss, President Barack Obama, calling on high-ranking officials to have "empathy" (especially judges), Governor/DNC Chairman Tim Kaine is showing a surprising lack of it toward the animal rights wing of the Democrat base. Yesterday, PETA announced it wants to rent Botetourt Correctional Center in Troutville, after the commonwealth closes it, for a chicken empathy museum (see nbcwashington.com). Early reports, however, are that the governor is hiding behind a policy that Virginia does not rent surplus buildings. He just may be right — these are tough times to be a governor. First, he betrayed the Planned Parenthood wing of the Democrat base by signing the Choose Life License Plate bill. Now he's betraying the animal rights base. That rascally right-wing Kaine!

Same-Sex "Marriage" In Iowa Decreed By State Court

But it couldn't happen here, right? That's why there was no need for a Constitutional Marriage Amendment in 2006. Sure. That's what the opponents said.  Unfortunately, as we've seen in Iowa today (see New York Times), and in various states where courts force "civil unions" or same-sex "marriage" on its citizens by arbitrary decree, constitutional amendments absolutely are necessary.

The fact is, we have a judiciary that is no more interested in interpreting law than it is in giving up their salaries. Rather, they think of themselves as super legislators, not needing the imprimatur of the electorate as the legislature does, which is where law is made, which is why legislators are elected and judges are not. But, who cares about that?

Even though representative democracy was what this country was founded on, to certain judges — such as the ones in Iowa, New Jersey and Massachusetts — the electorate and its representatives don't matter. If these judges don't like something, they decree it and hand it down from on high, what the people think and expect be damned. If this doesn't make the case for constitutional restraint through each state's amending process, nothing does. At least in Virginia we're safe . . . just as we told we needed to be.

What George Washington Said

In many cases, as we reflect on what the wise men of centuries past would say or do about or in certain situations, it is at best conjecture, or no more than an educated guess. But not always. It always disturbs me how many liberals (many of them, unfortunately, judges on very high courts) write that the constitution is somehow a living guideline that adapts to current circumstances, and that it would be impossible to interpret how the Framers would apply it now. Oh, really? We have James Madison's extensive notes from the Constitutional Convention and, of course, The Federalist Papers, which were written by the Framers explicitly to explain how the constitution should be interpreted. There also are early Congressional debates and presidential veto messages concerning how the bills in question exceeded constitutional authority by the federal government. But the wisdom of all of these sources seemingly have evaporated from modern governing intelligence, zapped from the radar like an enemy war plane on the wrong end of an F-22 Raptor's Sidewinder Missile.

Along those lines, those who think morality cannot be legislated, we have this from George Washington who, lest we forget, was president of the Constitutional Convention and who never hesitated as our first president to promote, or sign bills promoting, morality:

Let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.

If that's not enough to convince you:

It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.

The truth is, all legislation is a remedy to right some wrong or make some improvement in a society, which is the essence of morality, and which makes morality the foundation of civilization. That foundation is Biblically based — one would be hard pressed to prove our laws are not derivatives of the Ten Commandments. That being the case, where is morality most steeped and the best context to learn morality? Answer: Religion.

By George, Washington was right!