Joan Andrews Bell
by Patrick Henry Reardon
Yesterday, January 15, 1998, here in Pittsburgh Judge Raymond Novak sentenced Joan Andrews Bell to incarceration from 3 to 23 months. One of her attorneys, challenging that sentence before the bar, pointed out the irony to his honor that it was the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. The two cases were clearly parallel. In both instances it was the matter of citizens heading off to jail for choosing the superior claims of conscience over civil laws that they considered unjust. Both individuals very explicitly appealed to the principle that, should the two things come into conflict, it is better . . .
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Patrick Henry Reardon is pastor of All Saints Antiochian Orthodox Church in Chicago, Illinois. He is the author of Christ in the Psalms, Christ in His Saints, and The Trial of Job (all from Conciliar Press). He is a senior editor of Touchstone.
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