Anti-swearing law

Bob Fitzke fitzke at VOYAGER.NET
Mon Feb 21 16:31:29 UTC 2000

Anne Gilbert wrote:

> But you "swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
> truth", in a court of law.  Usually, this is "sworn" over a Bible, but a
> court of law is a secular, not a religious institution.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your mind set) the "wall of
separation" is not nealy as clear cut as the phrase implies. Most courts use
"swear or affirm" to accomodate those who recognize no deity. The government not
only employs "chaplains" for Congress, it has them scattered throughout the
armed forces. The phrase, "In God we trust" is a commonly recognized breach of
the wall. And the 'swearing' statute in Michigan is only the tip of the
religious icebergs that clutter the law. For example, sodomy statutes and other
laws dealing with "perversion", for the most part, reflect nothing more than our
Puritanical heritage.

The courts generally recognize and accept this historical foundation rather than
giving full force and effect to the "wall".



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