The term “de facto” simply means that it’s a fact, it exists. Fifty years ago the South was accused of maintaining de facto school segregation in violation of civil rights laws. Today Federal agencies are increasingly creating de facto “laws” to bypass Congress or the Constitution. Here are a two examples.
As it established the Common Core standards, the Education Department insisted that it’s not a Federally mandated curriculum, something that’s prohibited by law. The standard tests, however, must align with the standards, so the curriculum will eventually have to align with the tests. The result is a de facto Federal curriculum that will permit only minor tweaking at the state level.
The Department of Justice has labeled certain businesses as “high risk” and is pressuring banks to “choke” their credit. Banks are complying and even cancelling accounts. Businesses like adult entertainment, payday loans, and firearms dealers may not be popular with everyone, but they are legal businesses that employ people and pay taxes. Unless charges are filed and a conviction obtained these businesses are being denied the due process guaranteed by the Constitution. They are guilty by decree of the department head and must be driven out of business. It’s de facto denial of rights without congressional action or court rulings.
There is only one solution. Congress must assert it’s function as lawmaker and rein in overzealous department heads.
The Federal government isn’t the only one stepping on the Constitution. Private organizations, including colleges, are increasingly using political correctness as a de facto law to silence free speech. This isn’t about preventing hate speech or lies, it’s about blocking any views that don’t fit with the ever expanding liberal view of tolerance. The truth, as long as it’s presented civilly, should not be suppressed under the guise of PC.
If people can’t honestly discuss both sides of an issue they are no longer a free people.