The Other McCain

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The Incorruptible Roy Moore Wins

Posted on | September 27, 2017 | 2 Comments

 

No man in American political life has suffered more than Roy Moore for his devotion to firm principle. He was harassed by the ACLU, purged from his office as chief justice of the state Supreme Court, and suspended again after he successfully campaigned for re-election. All of this he suffered because of his belief that human law ought to be in accord with God’s law, or otherwise is invalid. You may not share that belief, but Moore’s unwavering commitment marks him as incorruptible, a rare quality in an age when we see Republicans in Washington abandoning their campaign promises, and even forsaking their party platform, in misguided efforts to curry favor with the liberal media.

A well-scarred veteran of the Culture Wars, a former Army captain and a kickboxing champion, Roy Moore won a big battle Tuesday:

Roy S. Moore, a firebrand former chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, overcame efforts by top Republicans to rescue his rival, Senator Luther Strange, soundly defeating him on Tuesday in a special primary runoff.
The outcome in the closely watched Senate race dealt a humbling blow to President Trump and other party leaders days after the president pleaded with voters in the state to back Mr. Strange.
Propelled by the stalwart support of his fellow evangelical Christians, Mr. Moore survived an advertising onslaught of more than $10 million financed by allies of Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader. His victory demonstrated in stark terms the limits of Mr. Trump’s clout.
Taking the stage after a solo rendition of “How Great Thou Art,” an exultant Mr. Moore said he had “never prayed to win this campaign,” only putting his political fate “in the hands of the Almighty.”
“Together, we can make America great,” he said, borrowing Mr. Trump’s slogan and adding, “Don’t let anybody in the press think that because he supported my opponent that I do not support him.”

(Via Memeorandum.) This was a humiliating defeat for Mitch McConnell and the Republican establishment in Washington, and the fact that Alabama’s evangelical Christians were not swayed even by Trump’s campaigning for Moore’s opponent is remarkable. Moore’s willingness to forgive Trump is itself testament to his character as a Christian and as a gentleman, who understands the nature of political combat.

John Nolte of Breitbart.com explains the national dynamic:

With the results now clear in Alabama’s hotly-contested U.S. Senate Republican primary race, the unambiguous message coming from the GOP voters responsible for Roy Moore’s underdog victory is clear-cut — a crucial reminder to everyone that Trumpism is not about any one person.
More importantly, what this humiliating loss tells President Trump is that Trumpism is not even about him. The indisputable lesson here for the president is that even he, the man who started the movement, is not bigger than the promises, ideas, agenda, and platform he ran on.

(Hat-tip: Instapundit.) This is arguably true, although Nolte overlooks the fact that conservative evangelicals, in general, have been reluctant Trump supporters. In the GOP primaries, Ted Cruz was the main candidate of the Christian Right, who did not approve of Trump’s offensive language and behavior. Nevertheless, when it came to a choice between Trump and Hillary Clinton, conservative Christians knew which side they were on. If they didn’t, Hillary’s campaign reminded them.

Alabama was one of 31 states where voters approved constitutional amendments declaring marriage a union of one man and one woman, prior to the 2015 Obergefell ruling, which invoked the Fourteenth Amendment to say otherwise (as if this was what those who ratified that amendment, circa 1868, had in mind). Among the states which voted to protect traditional marriage was California, where the Proposition 8 campaign exposed the viciousness of the Gay Left. My November 2008 American Spectator column “Gay Rights, Gay Rage” began thus:

Before he was purged from the bench, former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore made a remarkable and lamentably unappreciated contribution to American jurisprudence.
Concurring in the 2002 case of Ex Parte H.H., a custody dispute involving a lesbian mother, Moore demonstrated that homosexuality had no protected status in the Anglo-American common-law tradition, that indeed such behavior had been proscribed for centuries as “a crime against nature,” and that Alabama courts had consistently condemned homosexual acts as “illegal under the laws of this state and immoral in the eyes of most of its citizens.”
One does not have to share this abhorrence of homosexuality to agree that Moore’s concurrence — copiously studded with court precedents and citations of Blackstone’s Commentaries, 16th-century British jurist Sir Christopher Wray and even the Justinian Code — accurately summarized the legal foundation of the case against gay rights.
Moore’s 7,000-word treatise came to mind last week when gay activists began targeting sponsors of Proposition 8, the successful ballot initiative that amended the California state constitution to prohibit same-sex marriage. Taking to the streets in furious indignation, activists created an “enemies list” of those who had contributed to support the measure, targeting them for boycotts and protests. . . .

You can read the whole thing and, furthermore, Judge Moore’s concurring opinion in Ex Parte H.H. is still available online. The disastrous consequences of America abandoning its Christian heritage are insufficiently understood, even by most Christian conservatives:

If you read Justice Antonin Scalia’s dissent in the 2003 Lawrence v. Texas decision, it was apparent at the time that the majority’s “Emerging Awareness” Doctrine would have far-reaching effects in law, society and culture. These effects were not entirely predictable, because Lawrence amounted to a repudiation of many centuries of Anglo-American common law precedent. With this decision, America was setting sail into uncharted waters, voyaging toward that part of the ancient map marked “Here Be Dragons.” . . .

You can read the rest of that. My point is that too many Republicans have become so afraid of the accusation of “homophobia” that they are unwilling to examine the underlying principle which was at stake in Lawrence. If you didn’t know better, you might imagine that the United States was, prior to Lawrence, a nightmare regime akin to Iran as far as the safety of homosexuals was concerned. Democrats would have us believe that Christian conservatives are like ISIS throwing gay men off roofs, and the typical CNN viewer probably thinks Alabama is the Worst Place in the World to Be Gay. Yet the reality is that gay people in Alabama are generally unharmed by “homophobia” and, as I recall from my college days at Jacksonville (Ala.) State University, gays and lesbians didn’t exactly live in a state of fear back then. Who could forget the flamboyantly gay black man who served dinner at the university cafeteria, or the butch lesbians who played on the school’s athletic teams? Certainly, as a student in the drama department, I was aware of how many homosexuals there were among my fellow students, and if any of them were thrown off roofs, I somehow missed it.

What theses recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions — Lawrence in 2003, Windsor in 2013 and Obergefell in 2015 — have done is to reverse many centuries of legal precedent, and to establish (as is now becoming increasingly clear) the exact opposite of the status quo ante. Whereas before these decisions, homosexual behavior was under legal sanction, now we find that “homophobia” is so strictly forbidden in elite opinion (including judicial opinion) that people are losing their jobs and businesses because of their mere disapproval of homosexuality.

Whether or not Judge Moore foresaw all these consequences 15 years ago, he nevertheless had the courage to defend our national heritage — including the British common law tradition — against those radical forces who have since become generally known as “social justice warriors.”

 

There is yet hope to “Make America Great Again,” and Judge Roy Moore’s victory proves that many Americans still believe in that hope.



 

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