Monday, December 10, 2012

North Carolinians Must Respect Choice If They Want to Choose Life

Today a federal judge in North Carolina issued an opinion that has outraged a lot of Christians. In part that is due to the way the opinion is being presented by certain media sources. Some conservative media are saying that the court ruled that the "Choose life" license plate is un-Constitutional. I have to take exception to that classification. There is a "because" that has to be added to that.

Now, I am as conservative as anyone I know when it comes to the issue of respecting life. And I am angry inside at the fact that someone challenged the North Carolina law. But the judge in the case made the only decision he could. It is a First Amendment case, pure and simple.

Like many other states, North Carolina issues vanity plates as a means of raising revenue. But the unique thing about North Carolina is that vanity plates are not issued upon petition by the citizens who get enough signatures to warrant issuance of a particular slogan on a license plate. Rather, the state legislature in North Carolina approves the slogans that go on the plates. They approved the "Choose Life" slogan years ago, but have denied those who asked for "Respect Choice" to be put on a plate. And, as much as it pains me to admit, that is wrong. It was just a matter of time before they got called on it.

If you want to put it in perspective, think of it this way. If California granted "Respect Choice" vanity license plates but refused to allow "Choose Life" plates to be minted, would that be fair?

The full 21-page opinion of the court is available online.

The old axiom applies: I may not agree with what what you say, but I will support with my life your right to say it.


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