Melancton Smith Archive

The CSA and Symbols: Learning from History



Since a crazed, hate-filled and cowardly gunman killed nine black Christians in Charleston, South Carolina, the PC police have been in attack mode on anything associated with the Confederate States of America. The South Carolina General Assembly quickly voted to removed the Battle Flag from a Confederate Soldiers’ Memorial on the State House grounds. Now, critics...
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Oregon Judge Attacks Free Speech in Wake of Obergefell



In the wake of Obergefell, the outrageous U.S. Supreme Court decision finding that the traditional definition of marriage violates “due process,” Americans need to turn their attention to the dangers of overly broad state public accommodation laws. Christian business owners are especially burdened when individuals seeking to exercise a new “right” are deemed “suspect classes” and...
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Justices Breyer and Ginsburg Would Hold the Death Penalty Unconstitutional



Today, the Supreme Court in an ongoing effort to micromanage state laws and procedures reviewed whether a certain chemical cocktail used by Oklahoma in executions is constitutional. In a 5-4 decision, the Court rejected the challenge to the use of the chemical midazolam. What is especially of interest is a dissenting opinion in which...
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When Thinking about Obergefell We Must Distinguish between Policy and Law



Among the friends of liberty, there is much confusion about whether the Supreme Court’s Obergefell opinion is a vindication of liberty or an usurpation of power. When thinking about the opinion we should be aware of two different modes of analysis: policymaker and judge. How we see Obergefell depends on which mode we have switched...
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Libertarians Should Be Cautious in Celebrating Obergefell



To no one’s surprise, five justices of the U.S. Supreme Court held that “the right to marry is a fundamental right inherent in the liberty of the person, and under the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment couples of the same sex may not be deprived of that right and...
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Obesity Can Be a Disability, Says European Court of Justice



The European Court of Justice has just issued an opinion holding that obesity can be a disability requiring employers to “take appropriate measures . . . to enable a person with a disability to have access to, participate in, or advance in employment, or to undergo training, unless such measures would impose a disproportionate burden...
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Obamacare’s Tax Credits in Jeopardy



Today, we received dueling circuit court decisions on Obamacare’s tax credit component. The D.C. Circuit held (2-1) that the tax credits do not apply to health insurance purchases through an exchange established by the federal government, whereas the Fourth Circuit held that they do. If the subsidies are not available for insurance purchased through exchanges established by the feds, then Obamacare...
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Why Hobby Lobby Is Not an Assault on Women



The reactions from the progressive side of the fence to Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. was stunning. The spin is that American women have been stripped of fundamental constitutional protections. Sandra Fluke at The Washington Post’s blog claimed that “[t]he Hobby Lobby case is an attack on women.” The White House lamented that the...
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What Would Obama Have Done with the Leaks in the Pentagon Papers?



“I’m sure that President Obama would have sought a life sentence in my case.” That is what Daniel Ellsberg says would have happened had Obama been in power in the 1970s. His interview is available at Wonkblog. As readers might recall, Ellsberg gave a reporter a copy of United States – Vietnam Relations, 1945–1967:...
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Verizon Surveillance: Do We Feel Safer?



Senator Rand Paul has a provoking essay over at the Guardian. He takes a look at some of Senator Obama’s stances on civil liberties and then examines what he has done as president. The focus is on the hub-bub surrounding Verizon phone records. Of course, the matter is bigger than just one company. The...
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