Thursday, November 30, 2006

Listen to 'da 'pundit

A couple of days ago, I posted on the possibility of the first Muslim representative in the House being sworn in on the Koran rather than the Bible.  Instapundit has some thought on this as well:

I'M WATCHING EUGENE VOLOKH AND DENNIS PRAGER on this topic -- of which I was only vaguely aware -- of whether newly-elected Muslim Rep. Keith Ellison should take his oath of office on a Bible or on the Koran. Volokh seems to have the better of this argument by a huge margin. In fact, I think that Prager's argument that oaths must be on the Bible is absolutely nonsensical. But weirdly Paula Zahn keeps cutting Eugene off. I'm sorry, but Prager's reference to "the American Bible" as the root of the Constitution is ridiculous. What's "the American Bible?" And whatever happened to that bit from the Constitution about "no religious test"?

I think he makes a good point.  Again, I'd like to have incoming officials be sworn in on the Bible, but if they're non-believers, then they should be given the option to be sworn in using the Constitution.  Maybe that's just me?


At 10:51 PM, Blogger Sunil Bajpai said...

Does swearing in, or taking the oath of office, have an impact on how the person acts thereafter? The ceremony itself should be made optional, perhaps.

At 9:23 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

I think swearing in DOES--or certainly should--have an impact on the actions. When an individual takes an oath to uphold--the constitution, the bible or whatever--they are bound to the principles within that document. And so it should be. The oath of office is not optoinal.

At 12:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish to speak, if I could, a little about allegiance. It is called the law of allegiance. In particular, I should like to speak about the requirement that all of us here must take an oath of allegiance. I would begin by defining "allegiance." This word is derived both from Norman French and also from Latin, particularly the Latin word ligare, to bind, and the Norman French "allegiance," which was spelled a-l-e-g-g-e-a-u-n-c-e. "Allegiance" is defined as the natural, lawful and faithful obedience that every subject owes to the supreme magistrate who will not overstep his or her prerogatives. It is the tie or ligamen that binds the subject to the sovereign in return for that protection which the sovereign affords the subject.


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