Thursday, February 9, 2012

Laws Against Catholics

The Penal Laws in England stated the following as regards to the Irish Catholics (See Duff, Six Days to Shake an Empire, 1966, pp 59-60):
No Catholic permitted to vote in parliamentary, county, borough or corporation elections.
No Catholic permitted to stand for parliament, or for a county or borough or corporation.
No Catholic permitted to hold a commission in the army or navy, or a post in the civil service.
No Catholic permitted to be a member of a learned pro­fession, except medicine, and in that only a chosen few.
No Catholic permitted to open or administer a school.
No Catholic permitted to teach.
No Catholic permitted to carry a firearm without a licence, seldom granted.
No Catholic permitted to own a horse worth more than £5.
No Catholic in trade or industry permitted to have more than two apprentices (except in the linen industry, which was to the Ascendancy's advantage).
No Catholic permitted to manufacture or sell books or newspapers. (This included all printing.)
No Catholics permitted to marry a Protestant
No Catholic estates permitted to be entailed.
No Catholic permitted to take or grant mortgages.
No Catholic permitted to take a lease for more than 31 years, and then at two-thirds the annual value.
No Catholic priest permitted to enter the country from abroad.
All Catholic archbishops and bishops must leave Ireland under the penalties for high treason. One priest only permit­ted to each parish, however large.
All Catholics were made to pay special taxes. All Catholic owners of land were subjected to special re­straints and disabilities.
All of any Catholic's estates must at death be divided among all his children.
No Catholic priest permitted to move one step outside his own parish.

We may have had of laws like this before, and perhaps again, even here in the US. And by the way, many of these are still on the books in England! Is the current HHS ruling the first new "Penal Law" for the US?