Friday, December 03, 2004

Separation of Church and State

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.

If this sounds familiar, its because its the 1st amendment to our constitution. Respecting an establishment of religion would consist of actions such as putting artifacts of certain religions in government buildings or allowing the practice of christianity into public schools and adding words like God on our money and in our country's pledge of allegiance.
Does putting the five pillars of Islam in our courthouses make much sense? No, neither does putting up the 10 commandments, they both endorse a religion.

Heres what one of the members of the Continental Congress, Contributor to the Bill of Rights, author of the Decleration of Independence and the third President of the United States had to say about it:
“Believing that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their Legislature should make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, thus building a wall of separation between Church and State.”
Thomas Jefferson 1802


Joe Wiess said...

Okay..I've read that letter from Jefferson. He was talking to the Danbury Baptists, who were afraid that another religion was going to be the state religion.

Jefferson also said in another letter that all men who decided to lead our country should be Christians, so as to lead the way in Tolerance, friendship, and peace.

He did believe that our country is a christian country, founded on biblical ideals, and divinely protected by the creator.

Toad734 said...

Then why did he, or all of his counterparts, fail to mention that in the constitution?

Joe Wiess said...

I would guess that at the time, it was just one of those things that was understood.

Sort of like "Don't hit me, unless you want to be swatted?" Or "don't eat the green snow."

Toad734 said...

Like the part where they said all men were created equal, yet had slaves?