Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney and the GOP's push for theocracy

August 14, 2012

Rep. Paul Ryan made a curious and troubling statement in his roll out as the Republican vice presidential candidate. He said "our rights come from God or nature, not from government." As a member of this government for the last dozen years, I am certain he bases this statement on something.

It is certainly not the Constitution. You know, that document that lays out how this government works. Nowhere in that document is God mentioned. It talks about the separation of church and state in the establishment of religion clause. Perhaps he would refer to the Declaration of Independence. That was a declaration of war against England, not a document of government. It said God has endowed us with certain inalienable rights. The word "certain" is important. It didn't say, endowed us with "every" right. Be that as it may, let's get back to what Mr. Ryan said.

"Our rights come from God, not from government". Really? Did the right to bear arms come from God? No, it is in that document of government called the Constitution. Did the right for African Americans and women to vote come from God? No, it is in the Constitution. If a woman is raped and gets pregnant with that rapist's baby, does the right for that woman to get an abortion come from God? No, it is legal due to a Supreme Court decision upholding the constitutional right to obtain such a procedure. On this one, Mitt Romney supports the resolution that would take away that right. And finally, does the right to avoid paying income taxes in this country by stuffing your money in a Swiss bank account come form God?

Paul Ryan in that short statement, makes it clear where Mitt Romney and the Republicans want to take this country. They want to take it toward a government of an "American Taliban" guided by some interpretation of the "inalienable rights" that "their" god has bestowed upon us. We should think long and hard of the implications of that statement.

Mel Mintz, Pikesville

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