Postmodern Amish

Paradoxes and riddles

The United States Supreme Court in Wisconsin v. Yoder (1972) went on record in effect endorsing a particular religious group—the one time in its history that I am aware of its having done so. At the same time, the court advanced postmodernism, deconstructionism and relativism with this sentence: “There can be no assumption that today’s majority is ‘right’ and the Amish and others are ‘wrong.’” I’ve often pondered that “others”: who in the world is excluded? Commenting further, the court added: “A way of life that is odd or even erratic but interferes with no rights or interests of others is not to be condemned because it is different.” In other words, let him who is without oddness or erraticism throw the first stone.


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