Betting’s letter about Measure 1’s grammar (Grand Forks Herald, Oct. 23) is so totally off, in more ways than one.
Though I too dislike the “passive voice,” that rule of style doesn’t apply to “legalese.”
Measure 1 is well-written precisely because of its passive voice -- that’s part of what keeps it from being “self-executing.”
According to the ND Supreme Court, “[A] constitutional provision is non-self-executing wherein it merely establishes general objectives, without setting forth rules by which those objectives can be accomplished.”
If Measure 1 were self-executing, maybe the opponents’ arguments would actually hold water, like when they say Measure 1 “will” ban IVF, “will” revoke living wills, etc. But the measure in and of itself cannot do any of those things. It would take extra legislation, which there is no reason to believe the legislature would pass, especially concerning end-of-life and IVF.
It’s the language of the opposition that is murky and sometimes downright unscrupulous, like saying Measure 1 “will” ban abortion -- do they know how the US government works? I assume they do, so I assume they are lying for sensationalism. Measure 1 cannot ban abortion.
Measure 1 stops activist judges from using our constitution to declare abortion a “fundamental right,” effectively nullifying our good pro-life laws, like parental notification, no sex selection, no partial birth abortions, and making way for abortion on demand in our state. This is not tin-foil-hat stuff -- it’s already happening in ND and has happened in other states, like Montana.
Big thanks to Planned Parenthood for funding the Vote No campaign -- that’s a dead giveaway as to the real power and purpose of Measure 1. They encourage this stripping of our laws that restrict them, then maybe they can set up shop here ...
Trust the legislators who crafted the amendment for our own good. Vote yes on Measure 1.
-Sarah English, Fargo
May 22nd 2019
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