Are Anglicans allowed to resist and reject a Bishop?

Discussion in 'Questions?' started by Elijah148, Jun 21, 2022.

  1. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    Ok, that’s interesting. My understanding is that canon law is derived from Roman law, which included the principle of the presumption of innocence. This reference had some interesting information:

    The Presumption of Innocence: “A person is presumed innocent until proven guilty (quilibet presumitur innocens nisi probetur nocens)” (Johannes Monachus, Gloss on Pope Boniface VIII’s Decretal Rem non novam (1303), ca. 1310). After first being coined by the above canon lawyer in the early fourteenth century, this expression or maxim was widely adopted by jurists and thinkers throughout the Western world. The maxim acquired broader recognition by the general public when a statement very close to the above was incorporated as article 9 of the FrenchDeclaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen of 1789. A very similar statement now also figures as article 11 of the U.N.’s Declaration of Human Rights of 1948. Surprisingly to modern Americans who have all heard the statement, “innocent until proven guilty,” no such expression is found in early Anglo-American constitutional texts, such as the Magna Carta, the English Bill of Rights, the U.S. Declaration of Independence, or the U.S. Constitution. Nor has it ever been incorporated into the U.S. Constitution. Nonetheless, by the early nineteenth century a version of this maxim was also familiar in the U.S. It finally became a formal part of U.S. law through a Supreme Court decision of 1894, which affirmed the validity of the expression, “the law presumes that persons charged with crime are innocent until they are proven by competent evidence to be guilty” (Coffin vs. U.S., 156 U.S. 432, 432-463).
    https://www.ssc.wisc.edu/~rkeyser/?page_id=546
     
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  2. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    I could have been wrong about it. I'm no Phil Ashey, for sure (he's the ACNA's canon law expert).
     
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  3. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    I’m not certain, myself. I just know that the only alternative to presumed innocence is presumed guilt, and the latter was a principle of Germanic customary law rather than Roman law. Most other systems - Judaic, Islamic, British common law, the Code Napoleon, etc. - uphold the presumption of innocence.

    Obviously, people can and will have their opinions as to whether a person did or did not break the law in the some way. (Did O.J. do it?…Depp v. Heard…etc.)
     
  4. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Well, I've read some indications that the presumption of innocence was not a part of English law until the middle of the 19th Century. And the roots of Anglican canon law extend further back than that. Thus, my initial comment.

    A great many countries (Mexico and Italy are two that spring to mind) presume guilt until innocence is proven. I've been under the impression that the majority of countries follow this principle.

    But again, I don't know the final answer as it applies to the topic at hand.
     
  5. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    I believe Mexico is gradually moving toward a presumption-of-innocence procedural regime in its criminal law. Italy definitely relies on presumption of innocence. The European Convention on Human Rights, Art. 6.2, to which Italy is a signatory, also requires the presumption of innocence:

    "Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law."
    I suppose a cleric brought to trial under canon law would not be accused of a criminal offense, and in that case presumption of innocence might not apply, perhaps? I'm also not clear about how such trials are conducted, i.e., whether adversarially or consistorially.
     
  6. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    A few years back I'd read an article in MSM about a young American in Italy who was accused of a crime, and the article stated that Italy had a 'presumption of guilt' standard. That's what I get for believing something I read in MSM. Inaccuracies up the wazoo.... :p

    I concede the point.
     
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  7. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    I think I remember the case you're talking about. There were definitely some underhanded shenanigans going on with that. Was this it?
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/oct/04/knox-acquittal-only-possible-verdict
     
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  8. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    The sixth-century Digest of Justinian (22.3.2) provides, as a general rule of evidence: Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat—"Proof lies on him who asserts, not on him who denies"

    According to Talmud, "every man is innocent until proved guilty. Hence, the infliction of unusual rigours on the accused must be delayed until his innocence has been successfully challenged. Thus, in the early stages of the trial, arguments in his defence are as elaborate as with any other man on trial. Only when his guilt has become apparent were the solicitous provisions that had been made to protect defendants waived"

    The presumption of innocence is fundamental to Islamic law where the principle that the onus of proof is on the accuser or claimant is strongly held, based on a hadith documented by Imam Nawawi.

    In the early 13th century, Louis IX of France banned all trials by ordeal and introduced the presumption of innocence to criminal procedures. It was during the seventh crusade that he had witnessed the presumption of innocence in practice by the ruling Muslims and sought to adopt and implement this law on his return to France. As a reformer, this and other legal and economic reforms led to him being the only canonized king of France.

    The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, article 11, states: "Everyone charged with a penal offence has the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to law in a public trial at which they have had all the guarantees necessary for their defense."

    The Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of the Council of Europe says (art. 6.2): "Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law." This convention has been adopted by treaty and is binding on all Council of Europe members. Currently (and in any foreseeable expansion of the EU) every country member of the European Union is also member to the Council of Europe, so this stands for EU members as a matter of course. Nevertheless, this assertion is iterated verbatim in Article 48 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.

    Although the Constitution of the United States does not cite it explicitly, presumption of innocence is widely held to follow from the Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments. The case of Coffin v. United States (1895) established the presumption of innocence of persons accused of crimes.

    Both the United States and Mexico are signatories to the UN Declaration of Human Rights. ​

    My point is that the principle of innocent till proven guilty is, whilst not universal, very widespread, sits well within our tradition, and is most certainly not a modern error.
     
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