For North Dakotans who actually practice their Christian religion — particularly Catholics and Lutherans — the 8th Commandment is pretty clear. It says “Thou shalt not bear false witness…” Exodus 20:16. Folks familiar with the Bible recognize this as being one of the parts of Christian dogma that says good Christians shouldn’t lie; especially about our neighbors.
Then along comes the Church-backed group “ND Choose Life.” According to the website for the “North Dakota Catholic Conference,” “ND Choose Life is a coalition of” anti-choice “organizations. Supporters include the North Dakota Catholic Conference…” (Source) ND Choose Life has released a propaganda piece that does not quite live up to the express language in the Eighth Commandment. Take a peek:
So let’s break this video down into the two main “facts” about Measure One, according to the Catholic Conference-backed group:
(1) The first message of the video is that Pro-choice groups sought out “a judge sympathetic to their cause” who struck down some of North Dakota’s unconstitutional anti-choice laws. This is patently false. It is a lie. North Dakota is unique in that it has a law — NDCC § 29-15-21 — that says both sides in every lawsuit get one shot at demanding a change of judge. They don’t have to give an explanation for why they want or need a different judge; either or both sides simply ask, and — abracadabra — they get a different judge. This makes it impossible to shop for a “judge sympathetic to their cause.” The oppressie anti-choice side in the lawsuit had the exact same right to demand a diffent judge in every case where the anti-choice laws were challenged. This “change of judge” law makes it impossible to “seek out a judge sympathetic to their cause,” because — if either side thinks the judge isn’t unbiased — they can simply get a different judge; no questions asked.
And this statement about the other side seeking out a judge sympathetic to their cause isn’t just false “false;” it’s false in that it it is a falsehood — i.e. a lie — stated about the neighbors of the people who back ND Choose Life. And that includes the ND Catholic Conference. So let’s be clear about this: The ND Catholic Conference is propping up an organization that is dishonoring knowing and intentional lying. And that’s sad. you would think a Church organization would hold itself to a higher standard. You’d think a Church organization would immediately disavow any involvement with an organization that bears false witness against its neighbors. Instead, the ND Catholic Conference gushes about its support of the dishonest ND Choose Life organization on its website. That’s troubling.
(2) The uninformed and misguided actress in the video reads from a script which claims Measure 1 was put on the ballot “to protect the laws we already have.” This is false. An amendment to the state constitution that is unconstitutional under the federal constitution, is still …read more