Manassas Mauled

The Washington Post, a step or two behind Bacon’s Rebellion, has an editorial this morning denouncing the City of Manassas for its anti-immigrant zoning policy that redefines the concept of “family.”

America was built on diversity, and to mount a campaign of harassment against it, as Manassas has done, dishonors the nation’s immigrant tradition as well as constitutional protections.

Stephanie McCrummen, the Post reporter whose story exposed the human consequences of the policy, has a follow-up story today where city officials, while refusing to return phone calls, issued a defense of their policy.


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7 responses to “Manassas Mauled”

  1. Anonymous Avatar

    Geez, if Manassas thought the illegal alien problem was bad, wait until the ACLU arrives!

  2. “You keep using that word – I do not think it means what you think it means.” –Inigo Montoya, The Princess Bride
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    “Family means: … (2) Two or more persons related to the second degree of collateral consanguinity by blood, marriage, adoption or guardianship, or otherwise duly authorized custodial relationship, as verified by official public records … (Amended 12/5/05)”Manassas ordinance

    Collateral consanguinity is that which exists between persons who have the same ancestors but who do not descend or ascend from one another. Blacks Law Dictionary, P. 275 (5th Ed.). Thus, a father and son are related by lineal consanguinity and an uncle and nephew are related by collateral consanguinity.” —Kansas AG Opinion

    “There was Chavez and her husband. Their two sons. A nephew. The man who rented downstairs. His girlfriend. “Your nephew, under our law, is considered unrelated,” Purchase said, then delivered the verdict: Two people had to go.” — Wash. Post
    _________________________________________________
    William Blackstone: Of Title by Descent

    Virginia § 19.2-368.2. “Family,” when used with reference to a person, means (i) any person related to such person within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity, (ii) any person residing in the same household with such person, or (iii) a spouse.”

  3. NoVA Scout Avatar

    sounds like we’re saying that this is a matter of degree.

  4. Anonymous Avatar

    Refused to answer phone calls tells it all.

  5. In the follow up article, this quote from Richmond’s own Justice Powell appears:

    “Ours is by no means a tradition limited to respect for the bonds uniting the members of the nuclear family,” Powell wrote. “The tradition of uncles, aunts, cousins, and especially grandparents sharing a household along with parents and children has roots equally venerable and equally deserving of constitutional recognition.”

    The quote is from an opinion striking down an ordinance supposedly aimed at overcrowding that also rested on a government definition of family.

    As so often was the case, Powell got it right.

  6. NoVA Scout said…sounds like we’re saying that this is a matter of degree

    No, it’s a matter of decree. Manassas’ ordinance inverts the nuclear family. The literal –and legal– meaning of the ordinance is that nephews and nieces are family; but sons, daughters, spouses, grand-sires and grand-children are prohibited.

    Siblings are collaterally consanguineous with each other to the first degree, they all have a common parent one generation removed from themselves. Siblings are lineally consanguineous with their own parents, to the first degree as above; there’s no collateral relationship. Parent and child? Manassas says ‘Out’.

    Further, the ordinance specifies collateral consanguinity to the second degree; Virginia code uses ‘within‘ to include lesser degrees of relationship. Since they are related to the first degree, Manassas siblings cannot live in the same house.

    Further (you thought it can’t get more ridiculous?) consanguinity is “the connection or relation of persons descended from the same stock or common ancestor”. ‘Consanguineous’ is from Latin consanguineus: literally of or from blood . Consanguinity has nothing to do with marriage; that relationship is called “Affinity”. Short story: husband and wife aren’t family in Manassas.

    Notes –
    Nevada redefined consanguinity in code to mean any relationship “by blood, adoption, or marriage”. Virginia has not defined it in code, and is a ‘Dillon’ state where and localities can’t redefine legal terms unless expressly allowed.

    Virginia § 63.2-1215 creates parent/child consanguinity relationship upon adoptions, severing all previous ones.

    Virginia relies heavily on common law. Canon and common law use the farthest lineal relationship to compute the degrees of a relationship; civil law adds both sides. Uncle and nephew are second degree by common/canon law, as are two first cousins or two sons of two brothers. In civil law the uncle and nephew are third degree and the cousins are in the fourth.

  7. Anonymous Avatar

    Does anybody here actually live in Manassas? I’d like to know what the logic was in the decision regarding uncles, aunts, cousins, etc. Was it that the overcrowded houses were full of bogus relatives, as in “These are my 4 aunts and uncles and my 12 cousins?”

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