Friday, June 10, 2005

Judge vs. ACLU

By Alexander Samuels

I would like to introduce you to District Judge Michael Caperton of London, Kentucky. He is a committed Christian who says his goal is "to help people and their families." The ACLU, however, is not . . . pleased with some of Judge Caperton's rulings. (See the Associated Press article "Judge Gives Offenders Option of Church" from May 31.)

Judge Caperton has been offering some drug and alcohol offenders options when it comes to their sentencing. They may choose to go to jail, attend rehab or start attending the worship services of their choice. The judge says this is not a church-state issue because the guilty parties have a choice of sentences. They decide.

The ACLU maintains that Judge Caperton has crossed the line of neutrality that the government must maintain toward religion. Let's look at this for a moment: From the article I read, it seems that the ACLU is not upset with the guilty offenders having a choice between jail time or attending rehab. The ACLU is upset because these offenders have a third option of attending a worship service of their choice: Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Mormon, etc. It is obvious that they don't believe that Judge Caperton is being too soft on crime. They see this as being a constitutional issue in which religion (mostly Christianity and Judaism) is being encouraged by the judge's rulings.

The framers of our Constitution are rolling over in their graves. When our founding fathers wrote that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," they were addressing their concerns about a state-supported church such as is found in England. They were writing in the context of a Christian-dominated culture where the people did not want to see one Christian denomination given state support over another Christian denomination. This historic interpretation has been suppressed and redefined by those who wish to erase religion as a sphere of influence in our country.

My opinion: Judge Caperton, keep up your good work of helping people and their families. As for the anti-constitutional, anti-liberty, anti-religion ACLU—well, the Bible does say to pray for your enemies. Enough said.


At Saturday, June 11, 2005 9:42:00 AM, Blogger Jamie said...

I'm not against this because it is a church vs state. I just don't think the three choices are equal. In my mind going to jail or going through rehab are punishments. They directly address the criminals problems with substance abuse. Attending worship services doesn't address this problem directly. There's no guarantee that the person will learn anything about themselves or their substance abuse problems while attending church. At least if the person is in jail or a rehab facility you know that he/she is going to be clean for at least however many days they are there.

Now, if the option was community service or attending church, I view those two options as being more on par with each other.

At Saturday, June 11, 2005 10:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love it. Although, in one sense, it's comparing a church service to doing time....

But as to what Jamie said, it's true that there is no guarantee that the person will learn anything about themselves. A lot depends on the church and even the particular sermons.

But what I think the judges theory is, and accurately so, is that a lot of criminals have never been exposed to a church. Yes, yes, I'm sure some church goers are even before this judge- but I bet many have never been.

Community service, rehab or whatever can be a waste of time. But perhaps, just perhaps, God will use this judges "sentence" to bring this person to a particular church and service and meet certain people who can do more good than anything else.

I don't think it can hurt. There sure is nothing un-American or un-Constitutional about it. On that point, the ACLU can blow (a gasket or something) for all I care.

the Heckler

At Monday, June 13, 2005 4:46:00 PM, Blogger Toad734 said...

So you would have no problem if a judge offered you a sentence of Jail, Rehab or a strip club I would assume? Or jail, rehab and let’s say an NRA meeting, or jail rehab or an opera?

Neither of these are any more qualified to deal with substance abuse treatment than the other, if the tables were turned and he was handing out sentences other than church, I am sure you would find this to be just as ridiculous as I do.
And no, in this case the Church isn't endorsing a religion, its endorsing religion; same difference.

What is wrong with just going to rehab? A lot of rehabs are Christian run anyway.

At Wednesday, July 06, 2005 7:32:00 PM, Blogger Adam G. said...

Heres my problem with Mr. Caperton:
For 9 long years of my life, my mother was married to him. For anyone to call him a "committed Christian" is a load of senseless words. This man not only is butchering my family by trying to take my two sisters away from us, but also making sure that my mother suffers constantly. This is what makes me so sick to read, because all he is doing is trying to win votes for any upcoming election for Circuit Judge of Laurel and Knox Counties, and the citizens are falling in the trap.

At Wednesday, July 06, 2005 7:34:00 PM, Blogger Adam G. said...

(continued)...If you are reading this message and are a resident of Laurel or Knox counties in Kentucky, do your community a good deed in itself by not voting for Caperton.

At Sunday, July 10, 2005 8:11:00 PM, Blogger Adam G. said...

Mike Caperton is not even a Christian; he was never baptized, doesn't believe in God, nor will he let his young daughters (who are my sisters) get baptized. Now riddle me this: Why would a "committed Christian" not be baptized or let his children be baptized? Can one be a Christian without accepting Jesus Christ as one's own personal Savior?


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