Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Myth: The Founders Established A Wall of Separation Between Church and State
excerpt from the book Five Lies of the Century pp. 15-30 | 1995 | David T. Moore

Posted on 01/04/2002 6:53:58 PM PST by Sir Gawain

MYTH: THE FOUNDING FATHERS ESTABLISHED A WALL OF SEPARATION BETWEEN CHURCH AND STATE

The founding fathers were certainly men of faith, and it was their intention to establish a nation built upon the principles of Christianity. American statesman Patrick Henry said, "It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not to be religionist but by Christians, not on religions but on the gospel of Jesus Christ."2 Granted, by today's standards, Henry's words are narrow and offensive, but to ignore or deny them is censorship of history. Ambassador to France Benjamin Franklin wrote, "He who shall introduce into public affairs the principles of Christianity will change the face of the world."3 Indeed they did--and there is much evidence to combat any myth to the contrary.

Evidence from presidents and statesmen

On April 30, 1789, George Washington took the presidential oath of office and delivered America's first inaugural address, acknowledging God as the reason for America's birth:

It would be improper to omit, in this fisrt official act, my fervent supplication to that Almighty Being....No people can be bound to acknowledge and adore the invisible hand which conducts the affairs of men more than the people of the United States. Every step by which they have advanced to the character of an independent nation seems to have been distinguished by some providential agency....We ought to be no less persuaded that the propitious smiles of Heaven cannot be expected on a nation that disregards the eternal rules of order and right, which Heaven itself has ordained.4

Our second president, John Adams, once told Thomas Jefferson,

The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were....the general principles of Christianity....I will avow that I believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God; and that those principles of liberty are as unalterable as human nature.5

John Quincy Adams, sixth president of the United States, summarized American history: "The highest glory of the American Revolution was this; it connected, in one indissoluble bond, the principles of civil government and the principles of Christianity."6 Adams's statement is diametrically opposed to the separation myth.

Noah Webster claimed,

The religion which has introduced civil liberty, is the religion of Christ and his apostles, which enjoins humility, piety, and benevolence; which acknowledges in every person a brother, or a sister, and a citizen with equal rights. This is the genuine Christianity, and to this [Christianity] we owe our free Constitution of government.7

Those are not the words of some wing-nut fundamentalist. Webster literally wrote the English dictionary, and he used words as precisely as a surgeon uses a scapel. His words cannot be redifined to say anything less than the Christian origin of the Constitution.

Evidence in the Supreme Court

When James Wilson was unanimously confirmed as George Washington's appointment to the Supreme Court, he said, "Christianity is part of the common-law."8 "Common-law" referred to the basis on which all other laws were built and reflected the posture of the Supreme Court for decades. In the case of Runkel v. Winemiller in 1796, just twenty years after the Declaration of Independence and nine years after adopting the Constitution, the supreme court of Maryland ruled, "By our form of government, the Christian religion is the established religion and all sects and denominations of Christians are placed upon the same equal footing and are equally entitled to protection in their liberty."

This case is crucial because it makes two issues very clear. First, it illustrates the real meaning behind the First Amendment: Each Christian denomination was placed upon an equal footing. Notice it didn't say all religions were equal in America, but that all denominations of Christians were equal. The intention behind the First Amendment was to prevent one denomination from becoming the national church. Everyone understood that; most could remember what it was like to live under the oppressive Church of England. This was one of the primary motivations for leaving England. But and "equal footing" had nothing to do with a wall of separation.

The second issue is quite a bombshell. The truth about the First Amendment is that it was adopted to prevent any one denomination from infringing upon another but was never intended to be hostile toward Christianity or designed to exclude Christianity from political life. The Supreme Court affirmed Christianity as the established religion. Following the case, there was no public outcry, no suits by the ACLU, and no conflict with the Constitution. While the separation of church and state might well be entrenched in the political thinking of today, it was absolutely foreign to both the founding fathers and the Supreme Court prior to 1947.

Nearly 120 years after the birth of our nation, the Supreme Court reaffirmed the fact that America was a Christian nation. In the case of Holy Trinity v. United States (1892) the unanimous decision stated:

Our laws and our institutions must necessarily be based upon and embody the teaching of The Redeemer of mankind. It is impossible that it should be otherwise; and in this sense and to this extent our civilization and our institutions are emphatically Christian....This is a religious people. This is historically true. From the discovery of this continent to the present hour, there is a single voice making this affirmation...we find everywhere a clear recognition of the same truth....These, and many other matters which might be noticed, add a volume of unofficial declarations to the mass of organic utterances that this is a Christian nation.9

Following the Court's statement that America was a Christian nation, three pages were devoted to eighty-seven authoritative citations. From the commission of Christopher Columbus onward, the Court built and airtight case for its proposition that America is a Christian nation. That's why Congress saw no conflict when it spent federal money to support ministers and missionaries for over one hundred years. Nor was there a conflict with appointing chaplains to the Senate, the House, or the armed forces. They saw no problem with Washington's being sworn into office with his hand on the Bible opened to Deuteronomy 6. That's also why the very same Congress that gave us the Constitution decided that President Washington's inauguration would conclude with a church service at Saint Paul's Chapel, led by the chaplains of Congress. The same Congress that approved a national day of prayer and thanksgiving, "whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly implore His protection and favor."10

Evidence in other political, educational, and spiritual arenas

The spirit of Christianity continued to engulf the American political arena well into the next century. Alexis de Tocqueville's classic text on early America's political institutions says, "The Americans combine the notions of Christianity and liberty so intimately in their minds, that it is impossible to make them conceive of one without the other."11

The separation of church and state was so foreign to the roots of America that Congress even approved a special printing of the Bible for use in public schools. In 1781, a publisher petitioned Congress for permission to print Bibles. Congress not only approved his request but issued this statement in 1782: "The Congress of the United States approves and recommends to the people, the Holy Bible...for use in schools."12 Interestingly enough, that statement isn't included within the NEA policy handbook. When the congressional recommendation was challenged, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled, "Why not the Bible, and especially the New Testament, be read and taught as a divine revelation in the schools? Where can the purest principles of morality be learned so clearly or so perfectly as from the New Testament?"13

The founding fathers saw such a blend of Christianity and civil government that most expected officeholders to be Christians. While denominational affiliation didn't matter, a belief in God and the Bible was paramount. Nine of the thirteen colonies had written constitutions. Many of them required officeholders to sign a declaration that amounted to a statement of faith. The Delaware Constitution of 1776 is a perfect example:

Everyone appointed to public office must say: "I do profess faith in God the Father, and in the Lord Jesus Christ His only Son, and in the Holy Ghost, one God, blessed forevermore; and I do acknowledge the holy scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be given by divine inspiration."14

Many theological seminaries couldn't say that today. I'm not suggesting that we return to such a standard, but the Delaware Constitution blows away the separation myth and illustrates the Christian bias of the founding fathers.

Statements about elected officials and citizens

John Jay, the first chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court and one of the three men most responsible for the Constitution, said, "Providence [God] has given to our people the choice of their rulers and it is the duty as well as the privilege and interest of our Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers."15 That's pretty radical. Roger Sherman, the only founding father to sign all four of America's major documents, totally agreed with Jay when he wrote, "The right to hold office was to be extended to persons of any Christian denomination."16 While the remarks are shocking by modern standards, the comments simply reflect the common political sentiment of that day.

Even as late as 1931, the Court continued to affirm America as a Christian nation. In the U.S v. Macintosh, the Court ruled, "We are a Christian people, according to one another the equal right of religious freedom, and acknowledging with reverence the duty of obedience to the will of God." In addition to being a "Christian people," the Court asserted that obedience to the will of God was duty of American citizens. No wonder de Tocqeville wrote what he did about Americans combining the notions of Christianity and liberty so intimately that it was impossible to make them conceive of the one without the other. De Tocqueville's testimony is priceless because he was an unbiased eyewitness to what was actually occurring in early America.

IS AMERICA GOING THROUGH "RELIGIOUS CLEANSING"?

It's amazing that the Supreme Court cases Holy Trinity v. United States and U.S. v. Macintosh don't appear in a single law text being used today. It certainly isn't because the cases weren't important. In the 1991 case Chapman v. United States, Justice John Paul Stevens quoted Holy Trinity as controlling precedent. If the case is still controlling precedent, then why has it (and its eighty-seven authoritative statements about America's being a Christian nation) been extracted from law books? And why are the faith-affirming quotes of the founding fathers removed from public-school history books? Furthermore, why do the history books say nothing of a Christian nation governed by Christian principles? And if the founding fathers were Christians who intended to establish a Christian land, governed by Christian principles, how was that dream uprooted? And why do 67 percent of Americans believe that the separation of church and state is part of the First Amendment?

A simple case of censorship

The founders' words and the court cases just cited fly in the face of the separation myth. Given the contemporary court's secular bias, they would be very embarrassing. Politically correct humanists are determined to further the separation myth in the hope that every hint of religion will be removed from public life. The primary objective is nothing less than religious cleansing.

Knowledge of the founding fathers' faith and their intention to establish a Christian nation has been a long-standing part of our American heritage. Even the modern-day liberal Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas confessed, "We are a religious people, and our institutions presuppose a Supreme Being."17 More direct still were the words of Chief Justice Earl Warren. Certainly not known for a conservative bent, Warren told Time:

I believe no one can read the history of our country without realizing the Good Book and the Spirit of the Savior have from the beginning been our guiding geniuses....Whether we look to the First Charter of Virginia, or to the Charter of New England, or to the Charter of Massachusetts Bay, or the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut. The same object is present; a Christian land governed by Christian principles. I believe the entire Bill of Rights came into being because of the knowledge our forefathers had of the Bible and their belief in it; freedom of belief, of expression, of assembly, of petition, the dignity of the individual, the sanctity of the home, equal justice under the law, and the reservation of powers to the people. I like to believe we are living today in the spirit of the Christian religion. I like also to believe that as long as we do so, no great harm can come to our country.18

How could a contemporary Supreme Court justice utter words so contrary to the current Court's position? The answer is that Warren made his statements in 1954. Justice Warren was educated within a system that had not yet rewritten a secular, sanitized version of American history. He was historically accurate but politically incorrect. His words were also prophetic: "I like also to believe that as long as we do so [live in the spirit of a Christian land governed by Christian principles], no great harm can come to our country."

A radical turn in the courts

In 1947, the U.S. Supreme Court made a 180-degree turn. Without citing a single precedent, and ignoring 175 years of historically consistent rulings, the Court claimed, "The wall of separation between church and state must be kept high and impregnable" (Everson v. Board of Education). This was a totally new approach for the Court and a radical departure from the past. With that single decision, the myth of separation between church and state was born. That explains why the phrase "separation of church and state" didn't appear in the World Book Encyclopedia until 1967. The wall is a myth. It was not established by the founders, nor was it part of our national heritage.

The fanatical nature of the Court's decision is obvious when set within the context of the 1940s. Just three years earlier, the National Education Association had published a series of sixteen "Personal Growth Leaflets" to help public-school students become "familiar with our great literary heritage." The back of the booklet read, "It is important that people who are to live together and work together happily shall have a common mind--a common body of appreciations and ideals to animate and inspire them."19 The NEA's selections for inspiring American students is extraordinary: the Lord's Prayer; the poem "Father in Heaven, We Thank Thee"; another poem that introduced the concept of daily prayers; a thanksgiving poem that admonished kids to "thank the One who gave all the good things that we have." If there was a distinctive "wall of separation" between church and state, why didn't the National Education Association (of all organizations) know about it in 1944? The wall is a myth.

For fifteen years the Court's decision had little impact upon judicial decisions but instead quietly cultivated a whole new thought system. In 1962, the seeds of the Everson case burst into full bloom and became controlling precedent for Engle v. Vitale--the case that removed prayer in public education by ruling voluntary and denominationally neutral prayer unconstitutional. The actual prayer was rather benign: "Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon thee and we beg thy blessings upon us and our parents, our teachers, and our country." Tragically, Engle v. Vitale started a domino effect of court rulings that removed our religious heritage from the public arena, especially from education.

In the 1963 decision of Abington v. Schempp, the Court removed Bible reading from public education. The Court's justification? "If portions of the New Testament were read without explanation, they could be and have been psychologically harmful to a child." Simply amazing. Suddenly, the best- selling book of all time and the most quoted source by the founding fathers was unconstitutional and psychologically harmful. The honorable court certainly didn't share the religious values of the founders nor the sustainers of the Republic. Abraham Lincoln said, "But for the Bible we would not know right from wrong." Exactly. One of the reasons we have lost our moral bearings is that the objective values of right and wrong have been removed from chilren's education.

In 1965, the Court ruled that religious speech among students was unconstitutional (Stein v. Oshinsky). While freedom of speech is still guaranteed for pornographers and political dissidents, one topic is taboo on the campus: religion. Stein v. Oshinsky made it unconstitutional for a student to pray aloud over a meal. In 1992, the Court carried its censorship into the college classroom by ordering a professor to stop discussing Christianity. In the outlandish ruling for DeSpain v. DeKalb County Community School District (1967), the Court declared the following kindergarten nursery rhyme unconstitutional: "We thank you for the flowers so sweet; We thank you for the food we eat; We thank you for the birds that sing; We thank you for everything." The Court's logic baffles common sense. Although the word God was not contained in this nursery rhyme, the Court argued that if someone were to hear it, it might cause them to think of God and was therefore unconstitutional.

In 1969, it became unconstitutional to erect a war memorial in the shape of a cross (Lowe v. City of Eugene, 1969). The Court carried that same religious bigotry into a 1994 case in which a cross in a San Diego park had to be removed. In 1976, it became unconstitutional for a board of education to use or refer to the word God in any official writings (State of Ohio v. Whisner). In 1979, it became unconstitutional for a kindergarten class to ask whose birthday was being celebrated in a Christmas assembly (Florey v. Sioux Falls School District).

By 1980 this incredibly twisted approach made it unconstitutional to post the Ten Commandments on school walls. According to Stone v. Graham, "If posted copies of the Ten Commandments are to have any effect at all it will be to induce the schoolchildren to read, meditate upon, perhaps venerate and obey the commandments; this is not a permissable objective." James Madison, the man most responsible for the U.S. Constitution said "[We] have staked the future of all of our political Constitutions upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God."20 Once again, the honorable Court is completely out of step with the founding fathers. Madison was absolutely right--the pathetic condition of our culture reflects the inability of individuals to control themselves. While the Ten Commandments hang above the chief justice of the Supreme Court, they are hypocritically censored from the halls of our schools. George Washington said that apart from religion, there can be no morality. We have removed religion from the public arena--and internal self-restraint has gone with it.

In 1985, Wallace v. Jaffree, the Supreme Court declared that any bill (even those which are constitutionally acceptable) is unconstitutional if the author of the bill had a religious activity in mind when the bill was written. With this case the Court carried the wall of separation beyond absurdity. In addition to applying to religious activities, words, and symbols, along with anything else that might cause someone to think about God, now the mythological wall may be brought to bear on an author's thoughts while penning a bill. I suppose the speculations of mind readers will soon be admissible as evidence within our insane court system.

Why did the courts make such a drastic departure from our roots? The answer is self-interest and a complete disregard for the Constitution's intent. Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes illustrated his personal contempt for the original intent of the Constitution when he said, "We are under a Constitution, but the Constitution is what judges say it is."21 The words of Supreme Court Justice Brennan are even more toxic: "It is arrogant to use the Constitution as the founding fathers intended, it must be interpreted in light of current problems and current needs."22 Perhaps the arrogance lies not in interpreting the Constitution as the founding fathers intended but, rather, in reinterpreting the Constitution to meet one's current needs. It takes brazen audacity to ignore the intentions of the founding fathers and to turn one's back on the 175 years of stellar American history that our Constitution provided.

A WAY TO STOP OUR NATIONAL DECLINE

Today, America is unraveling because we are no longer governed by Christian principles. We were once the undisputed world leader in nearly every area of life; now we lead the world in violent crime. Our divorce rate ranks number one in the world. We lead the Western world in teenage pregnancies, and we are world leader in voluntary abortions. We are the number one consumer of illegal drugs, and we lead the industrial world in illiteracy. Meanwhile, our economy limps along, struggling to sustain the $4 trillion debt dumped upon us by unprincipled people. This is all due to the turning of our backs upon the very heritage that made us great. We have bought this lie, but at what price? The indispensible pillars of morality and religion have proved to be just that--indispensible.

While many things can be done to stop our steady decline, the most important issue is truth. The truth must be told about our nation's heritage. The lie concerning the faith of our founding fathers and the myth of separation between church and state must be corrected with historical truth. Only then will we be able to reintroduce into public affairs the Judeo-Christian ethic that made this nation great. From the schoolhouse to the White House, the principles of Christianity must once again be seen as the guiding genius behind our matchless Constitution. Once this is appreciated by the populace, the indispensible pillars of morality and religion can breathe life back into our society.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Editorial
KEYWORDS: christianheritage; churchandstate
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-100101-150151-169 next last
Please forgive any typos. Numbered references available upon request.
1 posted on 01/04/2002 6:53:58 PM PST by Sir Gawain
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Victoria Delsoul; sabertooth; rnmomof7; thinkin' gal; 2sheep; ccwoody; texaggie79; wyldkard; owk
Please read and bump. It took a while to type. I'm tired now.
2 posted on 01/04/2002 6:55:54 PM PST by Sir Gawain
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Freedom OF religion has been transmogrified to freedom FROM religion.
3 posted on 01/04/2002 6:56:17 PM PST by LEGACIES ARE FOR LOSERS
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Well, I guess you know enough to already have your asbesties on....
4 posted on 01/04/2002 6:56:35 PM PST by r9etb
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain; CheneyChick; vikingchick; Victoria Delsoul; WIMom; susangirl; coteblanche...
Good work, gawain!

(((ping))))


5 posted on 01/04/2002 6:56:44 PM PST by Sabertooth
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Hope you brought an Asbestos suit! You are really gonna get flamed by all of the status quo idiots that believe everything the Media tells them.
6 posted on 01/04/2002 7:00:19 PM PST by Destructor
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
btt
7 posted on 01/04/2002 7:03:41 PM PST by fivetoes
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Major Bump
8 posted on 01/04/2002 7:04:52 PM PST by RaceBannon
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
"Numbered references available upon request."

Number 20, please.

9 posted on 01/04/2002 7:05:31 PM PST by toenail
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Good work. However I don't think this will change the minds of Christian haters here on FR or in the US population.
10 posted on 01/04/2002 7:05:58 PM PST by RnMomof7
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Long before the Constitution, there was the New Testament. In it's pages you'll find a similar happening as you described above: the eroding of the essential, pure original message. One chip at a time...until it's no longer recognizable.

Truly, Jesus Christ is the ONLY person that ever lived who inspired such fervent and sustained attack. Mention His name specifically and state that no one can have a relationship with God unless they bow to Him and you'll WISH you were only dealing on the Conservative/Liberal front!

11 posted on 01/04/2002 7:06:29 PM PST by avenir
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Amen, Bro !


12 posted on 01/04/2002 7:07:37 PM PST by Texas Eagle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: RnMomof7
And I continue to wait patiently for information on The Church of the United States where the head of the church is also the President of the United States. Until I get that info, I'll concentrate on more pressing issues than the fradulent seperation clause.
13 posted on 01/04/2002 7:09:05 PM PST by gov_bean_ counter
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Sorry, but you must be mistaken. The humanists know everything there is to know, both seen and unseen.
14 posted on 01/04/2002 7:12:38 PM PST by copycat
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: gov_bean_ counter
I am waiting for the first Methodist or Baptist or Presbyterian church to send its members out to hijack a plane or form an army.
15 posted on 01/04/2002 7:12:48 PM PST by RnMomof7
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Well, sir, you never cease to surprise. Nice work.

Of course, as long as the atheist/libertarian wing continues wilfully to ignore the fact that their philosophy is built on Christian foundations, this article won't change any minds....

Not to mention that the supposedly libertarian glory days of the past were made possible because the population was largely made up of Christians whose beliefs required them to follow those rules.

16 posted on 01/04/2002 7:15:09 PM PST by r9etb
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: avenir
"Long before the Constitution, there was the New Testament. In it's pages you'll find a similar happening as you described above: the eroding of the essential, pure original message. One chip at a time...until it's no longer recognizable."

That reminds me of a quote:

"It is not to be understood that I am with him (Jesus Christ) in all his doctrines. I am a Materialist; he takes the side of Spiritualism; he preaches the efficacy of repentence toward forgiveness of sin; I require a counterpoise of good works to redeem it. Among the sayings and discourses imputed to him by his biographers, I find many passages of fine imagination, correct morality, and of the most lovely benevolence; and others, again, of so much ignorance, so much absurdity, so much untruth, charlatanism and imposture, as to pronounce it impossible that such contradictions should have proceeded from the same being. I separate, therefore, the gold from the dross; restore him to the former, and leave the latter to the stupidity of some, the roguery of others of his disciples. Of this band of dupes and imposters, Paul was the great Coryphaeus, and the first corruptor of the doctrines of Jesus."

-- Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to W. Short, 1820. Thomas Jefferson, a Deist (not a Christian) was, of course, the author of the Declaration of Independence and of the Virginia Bill for Establishing Religious Freedom.

17 posted on 01/04/2002 7:16:58 PM PST by toenail
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Excellent!!

I like this:

The separation of church and state was so foreign to the roots of America that Congress even approved a special printing of the Bible for use in public schools. In 1781, a publisher petitioned Congress for permission to print Bibles. Congress not only approved his request but issued this statement in 1782: "The Congress of the United States approves and recommends to the people, the Holy Bible...for use in schools."12 Interestingly enough, that statement isn't included within the NEA policy handbook. When the congressional recommendation was challenged, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled, "Why not the Bible, and especially the New Testament, be read and taught as a divine revelation in the schools? Where can the purest principles of morality be learned so clearly or so perfectly as from the New Testament?"13

18 posted on 01/04/2002 7:18:07 PM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
For the past forty years the Liberals have been able to heavily influence legislation. The Liberals have managed to cram their beliefs down our throats because so many of us refuse to get involved.

In todays schools, it's OK to teach 6th grade students the importance of tolerance, Homosexual rights, same sex marriages, abortion rights and birth control. But if the teacher tries to teach about personal responsibilty or the common sense notion of being held accountable for your actions, he or she will most likely be suspended. Heaven forbid if the teacher mention GOD in the classroom, he or she will be terminated on the spot.

Look what our schools have become ever since GOD was thrown out of them!

19 posted on 01/04/2002 7:18:54 PM PST by MJY1288
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Thomas Jefferson to Danbury, Connecticut, Baptist Association, January 1, 1802
20 posted on 01/04/2002 7:19:06 PM PST by michigander
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
Pretty much your standard reconstructionist argument. It avoids the legal realities however.
21 posted on 01/04/2002 7:20:23 PM PST by Demidog
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
What I understood, and was taught, and read, was that they specified "A seperation of the POWERS of CHURCH and STATE".

Their intent was to keep the STATE from using the powers and influence of the CHURCH to manipulate/control the populace.

This was the reason they left ENGLAND and came to the Americas, was to set up a gov't like this, and not like ENGLAND's where the CHURCH and STATE were intimately linked, and the STATE declared you must practice the chosen religion.

22 posted on 01/04/2002 7:20:23 PM PST by UCANSEE2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: UCANSEE2
Isn't it funny how the media, politicians can leave ONE WORD out of a sentence, and use it to confound an entire nation.

Once again, they did not declare a separation of church and state,

but a Separation of the POWERS of CHURCH AND STATE ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

23 posted on 01/04/2002 7:22:04 PM PST by UCANSEE2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: MJY1288
Look what our schools have become ever since GOD was thrown out of them!

Excellent point. I wonder if anyone has the stats on how many school shootings there were before prayer was taken out of school and how many there have been since prayer was removed. I'd also like to have a practicing anti-Christian bigot explain to me why it's okay to pray in school AFTER a school shooting but not before.

24 posted on 01/04/2002 7:23:06 PM PST by Texas Eagle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
You're right - we are no longer a Christian nation. We are not even a post-Christian nation. We live in an anti-Christian nation. But then, our heavenly Father told us there'd be days like this....
25 posted on 01/04/2002 7:31:36 PM PST by anniegetyourgun
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: toenail
Of this band of dupes and imposters, Paul was the great Coryphaeus, and the first corruptor of the doctrines of Jesus

Amen to that!
26 posted on 01/04/2002 7:35:03 PM PST by NatureGirl
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: toenail
Thomas Jefferson, a Deist (not a Christian)

Late in life, Jefferson acknowledged he was a Unitarian and proselytized on their behalf. He was not a deist.

27 posted on 01/04/2002 7:35:30 PM PST by LarryLied
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: UCANSEE2
Here is the ammendment:

Amendment 1

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

28 posted on 01/04/2002 7:35:34 PM PST by MJY1288
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: toenail
Toenail, you're like a hangnail. You should only cite off hand remarks, contemperaneous politically motivated pandering to the religious, and vague statements. Just ignore the majority of statements by our deist and agnostic forefathers for the exceptions to prove a "rule." And please, don't quote a document that most of our forefathers actually contributed and signed which might throw a monkey wrench into the gears, like:

"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."

Bunch of pagans if you ask me. :)

29 posted on 01/04/2002 7:42:02 PM PST by Shermy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: MJY1288
So, does this follow what I said. The founders wanted a gov't that did not have the power to tell you which religion to practice or not to practice ?

If you were agreeing with my by supplying the amendment, I respectfully Thank You !

30 posted on 01/04/2002 7:43:24 PM PST by UCANSEE2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: Texas Eagle
"I wonder if anyone has the stats on how many school shootings there were before prayer was taken out of school and how many there have been since prayer was removed. I'd also like to have a practicing anti-Christian bigot explain to me why it's okay to pray in school AFTER a school shooting but not before."

http://www.columbine-angels.com/other_shootings.htm

I'd like someone to explain to me why Christians let the government raise their kids in the first place.

31 posted on 01/04/2002 7:50:21 PM PST by toenail
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Sabertooth
Thanks for the heads up!
32 posted on 01/04/2002 7:52:06 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: toenail
I am a Materialist; he takes the side of Spiritualism; he preaches the efficacy of repentence toward forgiveness of sin; I require a counterpoise of good works to redeem it.

No King but King Thomas !........I don't know.....doesn't quite carry the same weight......

33 posted on 01/04/2002 7:52:21 PM PST by Texas Eagle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: UCANSEE2
Your Welcome, That is how it was originally written, but we must understand that Bill Clinton and the majority of Liberals are still struggling with the meaning of the word "is"
34 posted on 01/04/2002 7:52:56 PM PST by MJY1288
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: Shermy
"I rejoice that in this blessed country of free inquiry and belief, which has surrendered its conscience to neither kings nor priests, the genuine doctrine of one God is reviving and I trust that there is not a young man now living in the United States who will not die a Unitarian."
--Thomas Jefferson June 22, 1822

Unitarians such as Jefferson, John John Quincy and Abigal Adams,Julia Ward Howe and Millard Fillmore, among others, did consider themselves Christians.

35 posted on 01/04/2002 7:53:22 PM PST by LarryLied
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
You are the only person I have ever heard other than my father to outline that point. That perspective(truth) was actually taught in schools back in the 1950s. I was raised to beleive all the things you have written about. I wish you would submit that as an oped to a few hundred newspapers. Piss on the left and all they stand for. GODBLESSTHEUSA. No separation here.
36 posted on 01/04/2002 7:53:52 PM PST by satchmodog9
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: LarryLied
Unitarians Christians? (ok don't flame me!)

But that was at the end of his life, not during the relevant times of country building.

37 posted on 01/04/2002 7:55:53 PM PST by Shermy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

Comment #38 Removed by Moderator

To: toenail
Number 20, please.

Harold K. Lane, Liberty! Cry Liberty! (Boston: Lamb and Lamb Tractarian Society, 1939) 32-3.

39 posted on 01/04/2002 8:04:46 PM PST by Sir Gawain
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: UCANSEE2
Our fore-fathers had the wisdom and foresight to see the danger of states or nations that are ruled by a religion or a religous organization, and the danger of the state ruling the religion. This doesn't mean their has to be a absolute seperation, it just means government can't rule or be ruled by a religion.

Just look at every single country on the planet that is governed by a religous entity or person! It results in oppression and dictatorships, but when religion is denied you have Godless and morally bankrupt countries like China and the former Soviet Union. My belief is: The Founding Fathers made sure it was understood we were founded under "One God" and the seperation between church and state is that no laws or shall be made for or against religion. So I believe when our children were denied the right of prayer in school, that is when our Constitutional Rights were violated

40 posted on 01/04/2002 8:07:20 PM PST by MJY1288
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: sirgawain
"Harold K. Lane, Liberty! Cry Liberty! (Boston: Lamb and Lamb Tractarian Society, 1939) 32-3."

Condensed Debating Points:


PRO 10  James Madison

"We have staked the whole future of American civilization not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self-government, upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments." David Barton's book The Myth of Separation

CON 10.1

The only problem with the above is, no such quote has ever been found among any of James Madison's writings. None of the biographers of Madison, past or present have ever run across such a quote, and most if not all would love to know where this false quote originated. Apparently, David Barton did not check the work of the secondary sources he quotes.


41 posted on 01/04/2002 8:15:50 PM PST by toenail
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: Shermy
Jefferson was always on the Unitarian page. Only at the end did he come out and admit it. All these guys were weaned on the Bible. For any of them to go outside their culture and become some sort of vague "deist" unconnected to the Judeo-Christian heritage was rare. Paine is the only one I know of who clearly stated he was a deist.

And yes, Unitarians back then, unlike many today, were Christians. Despite what most everyone else called them :-)

42 posted on 01/04/2002 8:18:47 PM PST by LarryLied
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: Texas Eagle
"I'd also like to have a practicing anti-Christian bigot explain to me why it's okay to pray in school AFTER a school shooting but not before."

That would be a good question for the ACLU (Anti.. Christian.. Liberal.. Union..)

43 posted on 01/04/2002 8:18:48 PM PST by MJY1288
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: toenail
Thanks for the timely reply. I didn't notice any reference as to when God was kicked out of our public schools so I picked 1970 as my cut-off point. I counted 7 incidents of schoolground killings. Two of which were committed by adults. I couldn't count how many occurred after 1970 but it must be close to 50 (not including the killings in Luxembourg and Sweden). My conclusion: Schools were safer before we kicked God out

As far as Christians allowing the government to raise their kids... I don't know if sending kids to school amounts to having the government raise them, but the question does have some validity.

Obviously there is no quick-fix that will take us back to pre-1970 school safety levels, but let's at least acknowledge that schools were safer before we kicked God out.

44 posted on 01/04/2002 8:25:30 PM PST by Texas Eagle
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 31 | View Replies]

Comment #45 Removed by Moderator

To: MJY1288
Hey, I am in complete agreement !
46 posted on 01/04/2002 8:28:12 PM PST by UCANSEE2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: toenail
Reply to post #17: On September 6, 1819 Thomas Jefferson Wrote: the Constitution is a mere thing of wax in the hands of the judiciary, which they may twist and shape into any form they please. On September 28, 1820, Jefferson wrote to William Jarvis: you seem to consider the judges as the ultimate arbiters of all constitutional questions; a very dangerous doctrine indeed,and one that would place us under the depotism of an oligarchy. our judges are honest as other men, and not more so... and their power [is] the more dangerous, as they are in office for life and not responsible, as the other functionaries are, to the elective control. The Constitution has erected no such single tribunal, knowing that to whatever hands confided, with corruptions of time and party, its members would become despots. On November 4,1820 Thomas Jefferson wrote to Jared Sparks: I hold the precepts of Jesus as delivered by Himself, to be the most pure, benevolent and sublime which have ever been preached to man...
47 posted on 01/04/2002 8:31:54 PM PST by A6M3
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Texas Eagle
"As far as Christians allowing the government to raise their kids... I don't know if sending kids to school amounts to having the government raise them, but the question does have some validity."

Alliance for the Separation of School and State

Also see this recent thread (an excellent read).

48 posted on 01/04/2002 8:34:34 PM PST by toenail
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: eightroundclip
"Let the atheists home school."

I intend to.

49 posted on 01/04/2002 8:36:07 PM PST by toenail
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]

To: eightroundclip
You are correct, I meant to say, when teachers were not allowed to begin the day with the Lords Prayer.
50 posted on 01/04/2002 8:40:31 PM PST by MJY1288
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-100101-150151-169 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson