Moore says nation's laws recognize the sovereignty of God
By David Yonke, The Toledo Blade, March 11, 2006
The Constitution, by its very mention of religion in the First Amendment, "recognizes a creator God and the rights that come from it and the duties that you owe to it," said Chief Justice Roy Moore, who will give a speech Tuesday night at Monclova Christian Academy.
The man unofficially known as "The Ten Commandments Judge" said in an interview this week that the phrase "separation of church of state," which does not appear in the Constitution, is widely misunderstood by the general public and he plans to share his thoughts on that matter Tuesday.
The former chief justice of the Supreme Court of Alabama was removed from office in November, 2003, after refusing to obey a federal court order to take a Ten Commandments monument out of the lobby of the state supreme court building. He is running for governor of Alabama and has written a book, So Help Me God: The Ten Commandments, Judicial Tyranny, and the Battle for Religious Freedom (Broadman & Holman, 2005).
A graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point who earned a law degree from the University of Alabama, Chief Justice Moore said he was "a little bewildered" by Alabama's nine-member Court of the Judiciary decision to remove him from office.
But he asserted that he was right and the panel was in error.
"I did not disobey the rule of law. I disobeyed the rule of man," he said. "No judge or person can put himself above the law he is sworn to uphold. And we are not sworn to obey such men, but the Constitution."
Jesus told his followers to "render under Caesar that which is Caesar's, and unto God that which is God's," he said, referring to Matthew 22:21. "Jesus said that not everything belongs to Caesar, and those things are protected by the First Amendment."
Polls showed that 80 percent of Americans supported the judge's stance to keep the Ten Commandments in the courthouse, and Chief Justice Moore said those numbers reflect the public's support of religious freedom.
"No government, no man, no institution can deny the sovereignty of God, and the sovereignty of God is so important to understand - legally," he said. "People might take what I'm saying as a religious statement. It is not. Legally, we not only have a right, we have a sworn duty to acknowledge God. … The founders of this country said God gives us rights and secures them for you. That was the principle upon which this country was founded."
Chief Justice Moore said the Ten Commandments are much more than a historical document. "Of course, they are historical. They represent where we come from and the Judeo-Christian values that this country was founded upon. But they also represent where we are going," he said.
Such values provide the constitutional right of freedom of religion, he said. People of different faiths or of no faith "have the right to believe what we want to believe. That right comes from God and not from government. That's why we're pluralistic. You don't find pluralism in Saudi Arabia," Chief Justice Moore said.
To promote the causes he so passionately believes in, the former chief justice founded the Foundation for Moral Law, Inc., of which he serves as chairman. The nonprofit organization says on its Web site, www.morallaw.org, that it seeks to "defend America and her citizens' right to acknowledge Almighty God, by participating, directly and indirectly, in litigation involving the acknowledgement of God," and to "educate the public about the U.S. Constitution and the Godly foundation of the United States of America."
If the Founding Fathers could see how the courts have interpreted the First Amendment and the Constitution, "they would be outraged and they would take actions to stop it," he said.
Chief Justice Roy Moore, who will give a speech Tuesday night at Monclova Christian Academy, 7819 Monclova Rd., Monclova, at 7 p.m. Tuesday, followed by a reception and book signing. Tickets are free and available by calling 419-866-0773.
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