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Published August 03, 2010 in Short Answers by Mary Ruwart
Illegal aliens break numerous laws to come to America. I know you support free immigration. But do you support lawlessness? Government is charged with enforcing the laws. Laws should be changed through due process -- not by simply ignoring the ones you disagree with.
Supporting a change in our laws is not the same as supporting lawlessness. A decision to break a law or obey it may be a matter of conscience.
Historically, Americans have broken laws that they considered immoral. The individuals who ran the "Underground Railroads" to get black slaves out of the South and into Canada not only violated laws permitting slavery in the South, but laws of the North which demanded that slaves who escaped to the northern states must be returned to their "rightful" owners.
Although many states have passed laws permitting patients to grow their own marijuana, as per their doctors' orders, government officials still prosecute them. See Ed Rosenthal, Peter McWilliams, and Steve Kubby for example. Who is breaking the law here? The federal government, the state government, the voters, or the medical marijuana patients?
In the United States, juries of the people have the final say as to whether a law is legitimate. Juries have a time-honored right to judge both the law and the facts of a case. Juries have often "nullified" laws this way, including the ones demanding that black slaves who escaped to the North be returned. Our freedom of religion rests largely on the jury's acquittal of William Penn, who broke the law by preaching religious "heresy." Judges routinely instruct juries that they do not have the right to judge the law, in spite of clear legal precedents to the contrary (see www.fija.org for further details). Are the juries operating outside of the law -- or are the judges?
Read more of Dr. Mary Ruwart's responces to tough questions in her book Short Answers to the Tough Questions.