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Powerful bare-faced defense vs. Lee-Coppinger edicts comes from anti-Vietnam war crank

Jim Coppinger, mayor of Hamilton County, Tenn., is imposing personal opinions upon members of the public as if they were properly codified law — and he is causing widespread offense, and vast obedience. (Photo Shelia Harding Cannon)

Now the leper on whom the sore is, his clothes shall be torn and his head bare; and he shall cover his mustache, and cry, “Unclean! Unclean!” — Leviticus 13:45

Innocent and harmless Americans who refuse to cooperate with lawless edicts on chin diapers have the protection of God. 

They also have protections in the U.S. constitution under religious belief, the power of the individual to defy claims against him based on religion as a general concept.

By David Tulis / NoogaRadio 92.7 FM

The standard of protection is long established. 

It comes from a cockeyed draft resister during the Vietnam war who won protection for his beliefs against military service, even though his were humanistic and manmade — not Christian. 

The supreme court upheld the right of Daniel Andrew Seeger to not serve in the military because his beliefs were personally and sincerely held and religious in nature.

This standard set in 1965 has generally been upheld, though other cases indicate the defense can’t always withstand claims by “the good people” upon private people interacting either with government or seeking advantage from a party exercising a government privilege.

‘A false matter’

Gov. Bill Lee, joined by county and city mayors such as Jim Coppinger and Andy Berke, are deceiving the public about their authority and refuse to recognize any written and codified boundaries or borders to their scope of action. “You shall not circulate a false report,” the scriptures warn. “Do not put your hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness. You shall not follow a crowd to do evil; nor shall you testify in a dispute so as to turn aside after many to pervert justice. *** Keep yourself far from a false matter; do not kill the innocent and righteous. For I will not justify the wicked.” Exodus 23:1, 2, 7

These men make professions of faith in God. “Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people, making widows their prey and robbing the fatherless.” Isaiah 10:1, 2

Maybe the Lee-Coppinger-Berke beliefs are religious in nature (and meriting legal protection), but they won’t have protection from God in the Christian religion. Woe to those who plan iniquity, to those who plot evil on their beds! At morning’s light they carry it out because it is in their power to do it. They covet fields and seize them, and houses, and take them. They defraud people of their homes, they rob them of their inheritance.” Micah 2:1, 2

The Lee-Coppinger-Berke edicts have thrown tens of thousands of people off their jobs and shuttered countless small shops and businesses. These men, with the best of intentions, are taking part in what James Howard Kunstler calls “the long emergency,” a global liquidation fueled by the militarization of the economy and self-consuming credit emissions — visible in the jarring upcroppings in new construction in cityscapes dotted with empty storefronts, blanked-out shops and bankrupted retail centers.

What’s protected

Generally, if you have protection if your position is religious in nature. Your conception is able with withstand external claims if your ideal meets five tests:

➤ Arises from religious training and is a belief

➤ Your belief is personal to the individual 

➤ Is in relation to a supreme being or power

➤ Involving duties superior to those owed to any human being

➤ Must be truly and sincerely held

The protected belief must be personal, and the person need not be affiliated with any group or church.

The Congress recognized that one might be religious without belonging to an organized church just as surely as minority members of a faith not opposed to war might through religious reading reach a conviction against participation in war. Congress Looks at the Conscientious Objector (National Service Board for Religious Objectors, 1943) 71, 79, 83, 87, 88, 89. Indeed, the consensus of the witnesses appearing before the congressional committees was that individual belief—rather than membership in a church or sect—determined the duties that God imposed upon a person in his everyday conduct; and that ‘there is a higher loyalty than loyalty to this country, loyalty to God.’ Id., at 29—31. See also the proposals which were made to the House Military Affairs Committee but rejected. Id., at 21—23, 82—83, 85. Thus, while shifting the test from membership in such a church to one’s individual belief the Congress nevertheless continued its historic practice of excusing from armed service those who believed that they owed an obligation, superior to that due the state, of not participating in war in any form. United States v. Seeger, 380 U.S. 163, 172, 85 S. Ct. 850, 857, 13 L. Ed. 2d 733 (1965)

What’s not protected (excerpts)

As the following excerpts suggest, opinions that are philosophical, personal, poetic, political, scientific, economic or sociological are not religious, and not protected.

Beliefs which are philosophical and personal, rather than religious, do not rise to the demands of the religion clause. U.S.C.A.Const. Amends. 1, 14. Wisconsin v. Yoder, 406 U.S. 205, 92 S. Ct. 1526, 32 L. Ed. 2d 15 (1972)

In the short of it: No official (or store clerk) has any business prying into the content of your religious beliefs. He or she is authorized to only determine IF the belief is religious in nature. 

Given how slack Chattanooga area businesses are in “enforcing” the mask rule, one probably can enter and do business without having to go too far in establishing the religiosity of one’s beliefs, much less the religious content of the belief (the internals).

One provides a view of the shell of the belief (religious), but need not enter into the content, substance or detail of the belief itself, whether it be Christian or heterodox.

The types of belief not protected are those that are political, sociological, psychological, economic or arise from a “merely personal moral code.”

Language defining “religious training and belief” as used in statute exempting conscientious objectors from military service as “belief in relation to a Supreme Being” excludes those persons who, disavowing religious belief, decide on basis of essentially political, sociological or economic considerations that war is wrong and that they will have no part of it. U.S.C.A.Const. Amends. 1, 5; Universal Military Training and Service Act, § 6(j) as amended 50 U.S.C.A.App. § 456(j). 

Statute relating to exemption of conscientious objectors from combatant training and service and defining “religious training and belief” as belief “in relation to a Supreme Being” excludes those whose opposition to war stems from a merely personal moral code. U.S.C.A.Const. Amends. 1, 5; Universal Military Training and Service Act, § 6(j) as amended 50 U.S.C.A.App. § 456(j). United States v. Seeger, 380 U.S. 163, 85 S. Ct. 850, 13 L. Ed. 2d 733 (1965)

Congress by using words “merely personal” in statute denying conscientious objector exemption to those whose beliefs are based on a merely personal moral code restricts exemption to a moral code which is not only personal but which is sole basis for registrant’s belief and is in no way related to a Supreme Being. Universal Military Training and Service Act, § 6(j) as amended 50 U.S.C.A.App. § 456(j). United States v. Seeger, 380 U.S. 163, 85 S. Ct. 850, 13 L. Ed. 2d 733 (1965)

This vast panoply of beliefs reveals the magnitude of the problem which faced the Congress when it set about providing an exemption from armed service. It also emphasizes the care that Congress realized was necessary in the fashioning of an exemption which would be in keeping with its long-established policy of not picking and choosing among religious beliefs.

In spite of the elusive nature of the inquiry, we are not without certain guidelines. In amending the 1940 Act, Congress adopted almost intact the language of Chief Justice Hughes in United States v. Macintosh, supra:

‘The essence of religion is belief in a relation to God involving duties superior to those arising from any human relation.’ At 633—634 of 283 U.S., 51 S.Ct. at 578. (Emphasis supplied.)

By comparing the statutory definition with those words, however, it becomes readily apparent that the Congress deliberately broaden them by substituting the phrase ‘Supreme Being’ for the appellation ‘God.’ And in so doing it is also significant that Congress did not elaborate on the form or nature of this higher authority which it chose to designate as ‘Supreme Being.’ By so refraining it must have had in mind the admonitions of the Chief *176 Justice when he said in the same opinion that even the word ‘God’ had myriad meanings for men of faith:

(P)utting aside dogmas with their particular conceptions of deity, freedom of conscience itself implies respect for an innate conviction of paramount duty. The battle for religious liberty has been fought and won with respect to religious beliefs and practices, which are not in conflict with good order, upon the very ground of the supremacy of conscience within its proper field.’ At 634, 51 S.Ct. at 578. United States v. Seeger, 380 U.S. 163, 175–76, 85 S. Ct. 850, 859, 13 L. Ed. 2d 733 (1965)

The Tulis Report is 1 p.m. weekdays, live and lococentric.

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