So finally Bush has used his veto power for the very first time to put the brakes on embryonic stem cell research. I'm particularly touched by the Right-to-Life spokesperson's take on stem cell research: "It's unethical, not just because we're killing embryos to get the stem cells, but because it's giving false hope to people ... Embryonic stem cell cures may never be a reality." Wow! All medical research is unethical! But never fear, our new faith-based laying-on-of-hands treatment is just as effective as modern medicine, but at only a fraction of the cost!
Meanwhile, Congress itself is taking a few interesting steps. Since the judicial branch of the government is so gosh-darned pesky, the House has acted to take the constitutionality of 'Under God' out of the jurisdiction of the federal courts. Although this brings up the amusing specter of some states having godless pledges while others are fully godded, doesn't it seem strange (or scary) that the Supreme Court would not be able to rule on the case on appeal?
Let's try Fraid of the Courts Part II. Since the courts have already decided, after a leisurely 17 years of litigation, that the Soledad Easter Cross Veterans Memorial has got to go, pending one last appeal to the Supremes, Congress has stepped in to seize the land on which it stands and give it to the Department of Defense. The DoD is a good choice for a new home for the cross, since we all know that military service cures bigotry and atheism.
I find this shell game creepy. With this hand, we sweep 'Under God' out of the federal courts and make it a state issue. With the other hand, we sweep this Cross out of the state and make it federal land.