January 17, 2022
“Though all the kings of earth do conjure and conspire against Christ and endeavor to cut in pieces our Lamb, yet in the end they shall yield the place, and maugre [in spite of] their hearts, confess that this Lamb is the King of kings, and Lord of lords.”
Vindiciae Contra Tyrannos (pg.15)
Historically, the relationship between the state, individual, and religious institutions has been delicate by design. When working in unison together, there exists prosperity, liberty, and innovations that provide the foundation for compelling humanity forward. When this balance is usurped and perverted by those with no respect for the state, individual or the free practice of religion, there exists the worst atrocities of history imaginable. Undoubtedly this is why the enshrinement and distinction of these liberties is so dear to the American virtue, and to mine.
Ordinance 31-21 stands opposed to not only our country's Common Law, but is also in opposition to natural law, moral law, and the whole battery of philosophists, theologians, and thinkers who fill the tapestry of history with their writings and ideals. The words of John Locke are worthy of reflection,
“Any single man must judge for himself whether circumstances warrant obedience or resistance to the commands of the civil magistrate; we are all qualified, entitled, and morally obliged to evaluate the conduct of our rulers. This political judgment, moreover, is not simply or primarily a right, but like self-preservation, a duty to God. As such it is a judgment that men cannot part with according to the God of Nature. It is the first and foremost of our inalienable rights without which we can preserve no other.”
As a current Law Enforcement Officer in the City of Lafayette and graduate of Purdue University where I studied History and Political Science, matters such as these are of first importance to me. As a member of Faith Church and as a follower of Christ this Ordinance is at the forefront of my mind. The West Lafayette City Council’s goal to interject law enforcement into taking police action against those practicing their religion is a danger that cannot be overstated. While it is within the purview of the City Council to pass Ordinances in regards to the public safety and health of the community, this particular proposed Ordinance subverts the design and spirit of the law in a contemptible manner. While the use of Law Enforcement Officers or other legal enforcement agents against those practicing their faith is by no means a new idea, it has never been a good one.
Not only does the Ordinance require that the Police Officers violate the oath they took to the Constitution, it also requires them to use punitive measures to correct behavior and “generate voluntary compliance with the law.” The West Lafayette City Council knows that by following the teachings of Christ and communicating to others about them, this automatically places the religionist in contradiction to the law. This is of course completely intentional, and the main thrust and focus of the Ordinance, which hid behind the guise of protecting the citizens, is to place the local church into a position where they must violate the law or abandon the free practice of their Faith. The West Lafayette Council sets itself against the pious priest, devout imam, hardworking minister, and their respective congregations.
Along with my brothers and sisters, I would embrace the smile of the Divine in return for the scorn of the entire world. I think the members of the West Lafayette City Council underestimate the lineage and devotion of the saints, for they have set too low a penalty for the practicing of the Christian Faith. Were the penalty for violating Ordinance 31-21 death itself, the local church would not conform itself to the World to escape persecution. We have lashed ourselves to the Ancient Mast, and we will not be dissuaded by the rulings of those in open opposition to truth. Our course is fixed and God will preserve our estates.
Lafayette Police Officer, Purdue University Graduate, & West Lafayette Resident (District 4)