by Robert Arvay, Contributing Writer
When a baker refuses to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding, she can be sued if she is a Christian, or ignored if she is a Muslim. When a court clerk refuses to issue marriage licenses to homosexual couples, because of her Christian faith, she is jailed. When a pharmacist refuses to fill a prescription for abortifacients, because of his Christian faith, he can be fired, and his license revoked. When a Muslim flight attendant refuses to serve alcoholic drinks to passengers, her refusal is at first allowed, but then afterward she is suspended by the airline, and then she appeals. Who can keep up with all this confusion?
Reporters who are biased one way or the other, draw distinctions between these cases, saying that this person should be sanctioned, but not that one.
There surely are distinctions between these cases, but the basic principles involved are essentially the same – when must we surrender our religious convictions? What is Caesar’s, and what is God’s?
One cannot untie the Gordian knot. It must be cut. So it is with the increasingly convoluted knot of government rules and rulings. The eventual result, unless the knot is cut, will be the sort of social paralysis that historically results in the seizure of power by dictators.
We got into this mess by not recognizing that the United Statesis governed by two Constitutions, one written, and one cultural. Both are critical, and are inseparably intertwined. The United States Constitution was put into written form in 1787, but it is the product of thousands of years of the underlying cultural principles of Western Civilization, a synthesis of the complementary Hebrew and Greek traditions.
When immigrants come to the United States, we expect them to follow our written laws – but no written law can long be imposed upon those who have never internalized the values that produced those laws. The problem is compounded when those who arrive on our shores have no intention of becoming Americans. They reject our values, and insist that we adopt their values instead.
Dissent is important and often productive. Traditionally, Americans have always vehemently disagreed with each other concerning important moral principles. We even fought a bloody Civil War on this account. Afterward, it seemed that the matter had been settled once and for all, but new crises are arising that strike at the very definition of who we are.
The Civil War should be warning enough; there is a level beyond which mere dissent becomes destructive. You know the adage about those who ignore the lessons of history. We are approaching the brink, not only of civil war, but of national disintegration. If we do not anticipate the coming conflict and resolve it now, then destruction will follow.
Somehow, we must find a way to screen out those immigrants who bring to America not a desire to support our values, but a determination to undermine them.
We already use that screening in other ways. For example, when I was inducted into the United States Armed Forces in August of 1968, I was required to take a loyalty oath to defend and uphold the Constitution. Perhaps that oath should be amended, to include both the written Constitution and the cultural one.
Perhaps it should be required of all immigrants, and enforced by expulsion of violators. Firm and decisive action must be taken now. Otherwise, somewhere in the shadows, a lurking would-be dictator will take advantage of the confusion and seize his opportunity.