Thosezany Alabamians are at it again. Here’s my old acquaintance Jonathan Turley’s take on it:
In Bay Minette, Alabama, felons are being given the opportunity to climb the wall. Not the prison wall, mind you. The Alabama court and local police are helping felons over the wall of separation of church and state by giving convicted citizens an opportunity to avoid jail if they volunteer — so long as it is with a church.
Non-violent offenders with misdemeanor convictions are given a list of local churches unless they want to wait in jail and pay a fine. The constitutional problems are magnified by the absence of anything other than churches as an alternative to jail.
Town police chief Mike Rowland insists that this will save the city $75 per day to jail citizens and is based on the consensus of “all the pastors that at the core of the crime problem was the erosion of family values and morals. We have children raising children and parents not instilling values in young people.”
To help Rowland make the case for an entanglement challenge, Rev. Robert Gates added You show me somebody who falls in love with Jesus, and I’ll show you a person who won’t be a problem to society.”
Of course, in addition to the absence of secular options, no mosques or synagogues are listed.
It will be interesting how much of that $75 per day savings will be spent on the litigation over this unconstitutional program.