I would like to preface my comments with a quote from the Declaration of Independence: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed."
One of the questions I had asked was whether or not Knowles would support a human life amendment. To be fair, I could have quoted some of the language that pro-life circles have been advocating for years. Actually a number of bills have been floated over the years; all of them can be found at the website of the National Committee for a Human Life Amendment. One such amendment, authored by the late Senator Jesse Helms in 1981, reads:
Section 1 The right to life is the paramount and most fundamental right of the human person.
Section 2 With respect to the right to life guaranteed to persons by the fifth and fourteenth articles of amendment to the Constitution, the word "person" applies to all human beings, irrespective of age, health, function, or condition of dependency, including their unborn offspring at every stage of their biological development including fertilization.
Another, more well-known proposed amendment is the Paramount Human Life Amendment. It is much more concise. It reads: "The paramount right to life is vested in each human being from the moment of fertilization without regard to age, health or condition of dependency."
The entire gist of these is to legally acknowledge that all people, from the moment of fertizilation on, are persons who warrant full Constitutional protections to their unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, as stated in the Declaration of Independence. In fact, if you look closely at Mr. Knowles' response to my second question, in particular the last phrase, he more or less states that very idea, although he erroneously limits it to Maryland law as opposed to Federal law. Most of us make clear that we mean "fertilization" as many pro-abort activists are distorting the language to imply that "conception" is equivalent to the implantation of the newly-fertizilzed person into the uterine wall of the mother.
The National Committee for a Human Life Amendment has existed for nearly 20 years. Their work is well-known in pro-life and conservative circles. This causes me to wonder about his reply to my fourth question, as he seems ignorant of recent history regarding attempts to pass a human life amendment, or even of the very concept of a human life amendment (although he seems to be intuitively aware of the concept). Anyone who has attended at least one March for Life in Washington DC knows that Nellie Gray has outspokenly championed the Paramount Human Life Amendment every year. By the way - Ms. Gray is an attorney, so she has more than a casual acquaintence with our Founding Documents. Now does anyone see how the human life amendment can possibly infringe upon the other rights of other people? Neither do I.
In the last sentence in his reply to my questions, he opines that the "most efficient way" to handle abortion is at the state level. With that I vehemently disagree. All babies deserve full protection under the law, regardless of which state in which their parents reside. The concept of "equal protection" regardless of state is crucial to the 14th Amendment. I also want to call to mind the quote from the Declaration, "that to secure these rights, governments are instituted.." When the governments are failing to protect the babies' rights, some fundamental remedies must be undertaken, and at the federal level. This is not rocket science. In his platform as stated on his page, Mr. Knowles states that people are "able to vote with their feet to whichever state best represents their personal views..." Not so! The unborn baby, who has the most at stake in this matter, is obviously unable to "vote with his/her feet" in this matter. He/she deserves protection of the government, when his/her parents are hell-bent on murder. That is God's charge upon human government, and that charge is acknowledged in the Declaration of Independence.
Now look at the platform, at the embolded statement that starts "Personally I am not here to legislate your morality..." Ladies and gentlemen, over the years I have spent much time in front of abortuaries, and had the same nonsense thrown in my face by the so-called "pro-choice escorts" - verbatum!! Let's unpack this glop! ALL law legislates from some sort of moral basis. In this case, lack of legal protection "legislates" upon the unborn baby legal uncertainty as to whether or not he/she will be born. This "personal decision between you and Creator" statement has as an unspoken assumption that the unborn child is not a person whose basic rights to life trump all other factors in this so-called "personal decision".
Here's another gem from the main page of his website: "Government is instituted amongst men solely to secure the blessings of Liberty, not to tell you what that Liberty should mean to you. That is only for you to decide." Well, if there's no common understanding or definition of "liberty", how are we to determine whether or not the blessings of this nebulous "liberty" are being secured? By the way - that's not the entire quote from the Declaration of Independence. See the quote above, or google the Declaration for yourself to verify.
How on earth did the MD Constitution Party, which does espouse a correct pro-life position, allow this man to be at the top of their Maryland ticket? By the way - as I examine the party platform, I am most pleased to note that the "sanctity of life" platform is at the top of the list. That's where it should be; as "life" must be in place in order to enjoy "liberty" and "the pursuit of happiness."
I'll now say some words about Knowles' running mate, Michael Hargadon. I've known him for many years now and will testify that his pro-life credentials are solid. He has his own campaign website and Hargadon's positions stated therein closely align with those of the Maryland Constitution Party. If this ticket was a "Hargadon/Knowles" ticket, I might be able to endorse it. However, Knowles is the front man here, not Hargadon. I cannot endorse a "Knowles/Hargadon" ticket. However, I cannot endorse those of the other two parties, either. I'll give further opinion on the Maryland gubernatorial race in the next post.