Florida – March 15, 2022 – America’s Future, Inc., a national leader in the fight to preserve individual rights, promote American values and traditions, and protect the nation’s Constitutional Republic, announced that it submitted an Amicus brief to the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) concerning Heltzel v Youngkin, No. 21-1084 (2022) in support of the Petitioner Janet Heltzel and other plaintiffs’ fight against “cancel culture.”
The March 9, 2022 brief argues against the unilateral decision of former Virginia Governor Ralph Northam allowing the removal of the Lee Monument, a Virginia statue of Robert E. Lee, erected in 1890 on land conveyed to the Lee Monument Association by a deed which explicitly required the land be used solely, and for all time, as the location of the statue, without exception. America’s Future and the other amici organizations joining in the brief contend, “[t]hat the Contract Clause [located in Article I, Section 10, Clause 1 of the Constitution] should apply even to the Governor’s unilateral actions, just as the First Amendment’s admonition that ‘Congress shall make no law,’ applies to the Executive [Branch] as well.”
During the summer of 2020 when Governor Northam announced the removal of the statue (June 4), the country was experiencing riotous protests and calls to defund the police. It was during that time period that historic statues across the country were defaced, destroyed and removed.
“The foundation and roots of this country are to be respected and appreciated. As Americans, we do not need to agree with each other or our forefathers’ beliefs or activities, but we must not infringe upon any person’s rights to free speech or set out – in any way – to cancel our history and legacy. If we do, we begin the slippery slope of destroying our nation,” said Mary O’Neill, America’s Future Executive Director. “We hope the Court grants Certiorari to uphold the Constitution’s Contract Clause, and do its part to prevent the rule of law from being shredded by the rule of the mob.”
As background on the case, the Petitioner was initially granted injunctive relief late in the summer of 2020. Eventually, however, on September 2, 2021, the Supreme Court of Virginia affirmed a lower court’s decision to dismiss the case. This ruling resulted in the hurried removal of the statue on September 8, 2021, just six days after Virginia’s Supreme Court announced its ruling. Now that this case is in front of the SCOTUS, the highest Court in our land, there is an opportunity to “restore the Rule of Law in one important area — preserving the obligation of contracts from abrogation by arbitrary state government action.”
In addition to this case, America’s Future has joined in a number of other Amicus filings. To read more about these filings, please visit our Law & Policy page.