Friday, May 30, 2008
Voters here in the lovely (truly!) State of Alabama decided in 2004 to keep language in the constitution of Alabama that requires the segregation of white and colored children in public schools. It isn't enforced, but you would think that we'd have the wherewithall to repeal it in the 21st Century.
And you would be wrong.
And you would be wrong.
1 John 3: 17-18 (NIV)
"17 If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has
no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? 18 Dear children, let us not
love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth."
The 1901 Alabama Constitution does not serve the needs of the people in this state. If we just ignore the fact that it was created for the express purpose of disenfranchising African American and poor voters, we are still left with an unwieldy, inefficient, monstrous document. It is by far the longest constitution in the world, primarily because of the excessive number of amendments created to speak to such important points of law as whether or not to allow Bingo games in Madison County. Further, it is almost impossible to get anything done in the 3 months the legislature meets every year, because of the ridiculous hoops they are left to jump through for any and everything they'd like to pass. State legislators are so busy discussing amendments related to individual localities, they don't have time to worry about the pressing needs of the state as a whole.
But the most egregious feature of this constitution is the unjust taxation. Susan Pace Hamill discovered that Alabama has the most regressive tax code in the country, and wrote passionately about the need to reform it, decrying it as immoral and unjust. For further information, check here, here and here.
For more information about reforming the constitution, go to the Alabama Citizens for Constitutional Reform website. There, you also have the opportunity to see a 45-minute movie created by a graduate of Homewood High School, Lewis Lehe. The movie, "It's a Thick Book" is available for free on the website, or for a donation if you would like a copy of the DVD to show to friends and family, or anyone you think might be interested.
So, it's time for a change. If you live in Alabama, please go to the Alabama Citizens for Constitutional Reform website and sign the petition for a new constititution; then talk to your friends, your family, your legislators, and anyone who will listen.
If you are at all curious about what the Bible has to say about oppressing the poor, you can check out the following Scripture references: Isaiah 3:5; Proverbs 14:31; 28:3, 6; 21:21; Zechariah 8:10; Job 5:15-16; Psalm 9:19; James 2:5-6; Luke 6:20-21, 24-25; Luke 1:53; Luke 4:18; Leviticus 19:9-10; Deuteronomy 15:7, 10-1; Psalm 82:3-4; Proverbs 29:7; Isaiah 58:6-7; Matthew 5:42; Luke 3:11; 1 John 3:17-18; Matthew 25:35, 40.