What’s miss­ing, Rev­erend?

Maryland Independent - - Community Forum -

For all the high-sound­ing, com­pas­sion­ate quo­ta­tions Rev. Charles Hof­facker re­peated in his warn­ing against tyranny (Mary­land In­de­pen­dent, “Tyranny re­spects no one,” Feb. 3), where’s the re­spect for rule of law? Note also Rev. Hof­facker never once quoted bib­li­cal scrip­ture or the U.S. Con­sti­tu­tion in re­buk­ing tyranny, and in so do­ing failed to con­vey stronger un­der­stand­ing all cit­i­zens need to prac­tice bet­ter — per St. Paul’s Acts 23:6 wis­dom, without in­ten­tion­ally re­vil­ing legally elected lead­er­ship.

Bi­b­li­cally, we know from I Sa­muel 8, the Old Tes­ta­ment kings, Pon­tius Pi­late the Herods and Ro­mans 13, for good or ill, any sin­ful hu­man ex­ec­u­tive will be­have as a tyrant com­pared to God and His Christ. A cer­tain level of tyranny is nec­es­sary to ex­er­cise ef­fec­tive author­ity. The only ques­tion left to solve is the cur­rent earthly tyrant cho­sen, know­ing they will serve their own self-in­ter­ests when pres­sured. Even I Peter 2:13-17 obliges ev­ery Chris­tian, by I Tim. 3 de­fault moreso a Chris­tian min­is­ter, to re­spect the rule of law, giv­ing honor to rulers in author­ity. Why aren’t we see­ing that un­der­stand­ing in print from a Chris­tian min­is­ter?

In this coun­try, all elected fed­eral of­fi­cials are sub­or­di­nate to the U.S. Con­sti­tu­tion — if they and the vot­ers who elect them will re­spect the rule of that law and “love thy neigh­bor as thy­self.”

I mar­ried a refugee and helped her be­come a nat­u­ral­ized U.S. ci­ti­zen. We’ve been through the nat­u­ral­iza­tion process to know it well, some­thing which can­not be as­sured of refugees whom the law ex­pects to re­turn home when able, moreso when they hold a creed his­tor­i­cally ex­hibit­ing hos­til­ity to our coun­try. Our nat­u­ral­iza­tion cy­cle took 15 years be­cause our Congress chron­i­cally fails to up­hold its nom­i­nal author­ity to leg­is­late a truly uni­form rule of nat­u­ral­iza­tion (U.S. Con­sti­tu­tion, Art. I, Sec. 8, Para. 4).

In­stead, politi­cians of both par­ties over sev­eral ad­min­is­tra­tions have ceded ever more author­ity to the pres­i­dent, keep­ing things like Tem­po­rary Pro­tected Sta­tus to woo votes — even when the con­di­tions ini­tially evok­ing TPS no longer ex­ist; its con­tin­u­ance fo­ment­ing a le­gal morass only at­tor­neys profit from.

Pro­fil­ing refugees and im­mi­grants to dis­cern their true loy­al­ties and ex­clude en­emy agen­cies is noth­ing new, ei­ther — but how many na­tive born U.S. cit­i­zens have ac­tu­ally read 8 U.S.C. or im­mi­gra­tion forms? Un­til the un­wit­ting crit­ics of our na­tion’s im­mi­gra­tion pol­icy start un­der­stand­ing how im­mi­gra­tion law re­ally works at ground truth, ad­vo­cat­ing ig­no­rance serves no sen­si­ble pur­pose against tyranny. In our ex­pe­ri­ence, nat­u­ral­ized cit­i­zens seem to un­der­stand and cher­ish their cit­i­zen­ship bet­ter than the na­tives who need to re­learn the con­sti­tu­tional rule of law.

I hope Rev. Hof­facker’s pari­sion­ers and other un­der­stand­ing cit­i­zens ex­pect wiser ad­mo­ni­tions from him af­ter read­ing this re­sponse.

Deran S. Ea­ton, Wal­dorf

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