Posts tagged ‘laws’

October 25, 2012

Voter ID

by pastortimfowler

 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/madison_guy/6919635377/

I try to stay away from political stuff when I blog, but this is a subject that I think defies logic. Voter ID requirements seem to be a source of conflict. I just don’t understand it and here is why. From what I understand, the argument against requiring an ID to vote is about people who may be poor or live a long way from a place that issues IDs and therefore it is a hardship on them and risks disenfranchising them. If that were the case, I can see the point of the argument, but something about that does not make sense.
Voting is not something that everyone can do. You must be 18 to vote. You must not be a convicted felon. You must be a legal US citizen. You must live in certain districts to vote on certain races like county and city races. Without some form of ID, several of these requirements can not be verified. I think if the laws are on the books they should be enforced. I do not want a bunch of 15-year-old kids deciding the local school board or the president of the US. I don’t want someone who lives in another county deciding who represents me on the county council. I don’t want someone who is not a citizen of this country deciding who is our president. Call me crazy, but I can see the reasoning behind these laws.
But my argument is not against the laws, but against the logic of how difficult is is to get an ID for some people. I know that there are some in society who have a more difficult time than others when it comes to matters like this. It does not matter the race of the person, it is a matter most often of health, wealth (or the lack of), and age. I know these things can make doing anything more difficult. But here is my question, how long does it take to get an ID if you need one? Even if it were to take months or even a year, elections don’t come around that often and we know that most state and national elections happen every two years. Even under the worst cases, with that much time, and knowing the law requires it, anyone could get proper ID.
And what about other laws that require ID. For instance, you must be 18 to purchase those evil cigarettes. Every store that I have ever been to in the last 10 years says that they ID everyone before they will sell them a pack of cigarettes. Sure, if you are an 80-year-old man, you can buy them without an ID. Common sense says that he is older than 18, but what about that poor person who is in a wheel chair who wants a pack of cigarette and he is 18. Do they have to show an ID? Is that okay? Is it discrimination? That person has to have a proper ID and from what I remember, people purchase cigarettes quite often and I do not remember anyone ever claiming that proper ID to purchase cigarettes or alcohol as being disenfranchised.
I have to show proper ID to get the power in my house turned on, board a plane, drive my car, get into some buildings, catch fish or shoot deer and any number of other things that happen daily. But for some reason, getting an ID to vote, something that happens at best, annually, and something that has definite consequences if abused, is looked upon as evil and even racist by some. Try to get into a labor union meeting without proper ID. Try to get into a nightclub without proper ID. Try to get into Canada without proper ID. It won’t happen. Quit trying to vote without one.

Advertisements
March 28, 2012

Justice

by pastortimfowler

Justice.jpg

According to dictionary.com, this is the definition of Justice: the quality of being just; righteousness, equitableness, or moral rightness. It does not mean do what you think is right. It does infer that there is a higher authority that determines what is right. I believe that higher authority is God. Otherwise that leaves the whole idea of right and wrong in the hands of mankind, who has the tendency of injecting feelings over facts. I have written about right and wrong and where we get the idea of what they are. It has little to do with feelings, but few will admit it. Justice is a word being tossed around by many in cases like I wrote about yesterday. Justice in America is accomplished through a system of laws and courts and civil authority, not random groups who feel like they have a better way.
Before I go any further I want to respond to one comment from a reader about yesterday’s blog. I said that clergy needed to speak out about the threats of taking the law into your own hands and this person said that there are no black pastors or churches that were not racist or had the guts to speak out. This is one of those times that I would like to slap someone who reads my blog. You could not be more wrong. The only reason I feel that I can speak out on such a sensitive subject and be as bold as I am is because my friends know my heart and know me. They know that the truth sets us free and not our opinions. Many of my friends are black and pastor churches full of people who love God and other people, regardless of race. While I appreciate your opinion, I take offense at your racist comment about my friends and brothers in Christ.
Now back to justice. The goal of justice is to make things just, or right. Right and wrong were never meant to be subject to feelings. They were never meant to be gray areas or ambiguous. There is a difference between and law and right and wrong. A law can be something that is totally based on feelings. For instance, the current health care law is a feeling that everyone has a right to health insurance. I can find no place that ever gives us a clear-cut right or wrong concerning this. If the law remains, it will be wrong not to follow the details of the law, but it is still based on a feeling.
Right and wrong is where there is a clear-cut determination, regardless of feelings. Murder is wrong. Stealing is wrong. Sexual abuse is wrong. These are things that almost every civil society in the world agree on. It is something that comes from the very moral fiber of humanity, which I believe comes from God. It is right to help the poor, but how, is left open for interpretation. It is right to work for what you have and to provide for your family. It is right to love and protect one another.
But justice is the process of taking a wrong and to the best of the ability of the legal system, making it right. That may mean to those who have stolen, that they give back. To those who have hurt another that they lose the ability to hurt again. The process most often takes time, and because of the human element, can sometimes make mistakes. That still does not give anyone the authority to take this into there own hands. We must first give the justice system time to work. In America we are innocent until proven guilty. We are protected from those who would take vengeance into there own hands and given a method to defend ourselves against all accusers.
The bottom line to this whole idea of justice comes down to God. He is the only righteous judge. He is the only one who knows the hearts of man and has promised that no sin will go unpunished. He did not limit those sins to the ones that we feel are worst, but to all sin that has separated us from Him. He made a way for the punishment for sin to be given to another. One who would be our sacrifice and take the wrath of God so that we may receive total forgiveness. Not based on who we are or how good we say we are, but totally based on His love for us and His hatred of sin that causes us to be separated from Him. God can do this because only a righteous judge can bring true justice with no influence from human imperfections. God has done this and will do this for those who repent.
Although His justice is firm and final, He has not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ, our advocate, the Savior of humanity. Vengeance is Mine says the Lord. His judgment is true and His mercy is greater. Justice will prevail.