Friday, February 03, 2017

" has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws..."

One may well ask: "How can you advocate breaking some laws and obeying others?" The answer lies in the fact that there are two types of laws: just and unjust. I would be the first to advocate obeying just laws. One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that "an unjust law is no law at all."

Now, what is the difference between the two? How does one determine whether a law is just or unjust? A just law is a man made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas: An unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal law and natural law. Any law that uplifts human personality is just. Any law that degrades human personality is unjust.  

~ The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., 
in Letter from a Birmingham Jail


  1. Hang onto your hat...

    DT needs a War. But not just any war...

  2. You really can't make this stuff up. Unless, of course, you're in DT's White House. Then you can make up all kinds of stuff. As witness:

    1. Hey, what's the big deal? It's just alternative facts about some Muslim dudes. Nobody, like, *cares* or anything. Just chill.

    2. big Brother with his Newspeak has nothing on Trump and Co. with their alternative facts. And it's only been two weeks!

  3. From today's Daily Beast digest:

    President Trump on Friday ordered a review of financial-services regulations imposed by the Dodd-Frank Act. White House Economic Council Director—and former president of Goldman Sachs—Gary Cohn said the administration will also move to dismantle the “fiduciary rule” set to take effect in April that would have required retirement-fund advisers to act in the best interests of their clients and eliminate conflicts of interest related to retirement plans. Cohn called the upcoming order a “table setter,” adding that the actions are intended to keep the president’s campaign promises, in which he said he would “dismantle the Dodd-Frank Act and replace it with new policies to encourage economic growth and job creation.” Dodd-Frank was enacted in 2010, in the aftermath of the subprime-mortgage meltdown that led to the 2008 financial crisis and has long been the subject of Republican and Wall Street ire. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Cohn said the mission of the independent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the watchdog created by Dodd-Frank that governs credit-card and mortgage rules, could be redirected with a simple change in its leadership, by replacing its director, Richard Cordray. “Personnel is policy,” Cohn said.

  4. The Senate Committee on Homeland Security is taking calls about Bannon's appointment to the NSC. You can call: 202-224-4751.
    Please spread the word by cutting and pasting this.They are counting calls about confirming Bannon's appointment to the NSC. Call! I just did - there's one ring, then a long pause before their greeting, and another pause before the beep, but it works.
    "Hi my name is ______. I am an American citizen, and I am opposed to Bannon on the National Security Council." THAT'S IT! It takes about 20 seconds.

  5. Wrote this to Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Not altogether sure it went through:(

    Dear Sen. Warren,

    As a disabled woman (a member of two groups whose civil rights are consistently ignored at best and seriously endangered at worst), I urge you to oppose the nomination of Sen. Jeff Sessions for U.S. Attorney General.

    To be candid, it is not only Sen. Sessions' demonstrated opposition to Civil Rights that troubles me, but also the recollection that, during his time on the Hill he has, if memory serves, consistently been voted the stupidest senator. While this distinction is no doubt a high recommendation for a position in the Trump cabinet, the prospect of such an individual occupying the same office as, say, Bobby Kennedy, makes me ill!

    Our criminal justice system is a serious, complex entity. The man or woman who heads it must be intelligent, imaginative, as well versed as possible in all its various branches (not just corporate law, labor law, etc.) must believe in the equality of all U.S. citizens and residents before the law and must have a genuine desire and make a genuine effort to see that the country's laws are enforced equitably. I do not believe Sen. Sessions meets these criteria.

    Thank you for your fine representation of Massachusetts in the Senate. I know I can count on you to do the right thing and vote against Jeff Sessions' nomination for Attorney General.

    Yours truly,
    Kerry Thompson

  6. Finished Magnificent Obsession by Lloyd C. Douglas that I've been reading over the past few days. A lovely book, far more than a mere romance, though the romantic story is most satisfactory.

  7. It is a lovely book, Cat. Indeed.