In My Right Mind

"We all do no end of feeling, and we mistake it for thinking." - Mark Twain

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Location: Universal City, Texas, United States

"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take away everything you have." - Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, August 17, 2006

ACLU/Liberal Myth: "Separation of Church & State".

The ACLU is at it again. Thank God for their tenacity. If wasn’t for their diligence watch over violations of the Constitution, what ever would us citizens do?

This time the Louisiana ACLU Executive Director, Joe Cook, is all up in arms over the proposal of a Katrina memorial which includes a cross which has an image on it resembling the face of Jesus Christ.

Here are some of Cook’s objections excerpted from an article posted here:

"Alarmed by newspaper reports that a hurricane memorial in St. Bernard Parish will feature a cross bearing a likeness of the face of Jesus, the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana is reminding parish officials of the Constitution's separation of church and state.”

“In a July 28 letter to Rodriguez and other officials, Louisiana ACLU Executive Director Joe Cook said that the government promotion of a patently religious symbol on a public waterway is a violation of the Constitution's First Amendment, which prohibits government from advancing a religion.”

“Nonetheless, Cook asked the parish to erect a religiously neutral symbol and also voiced concern that the Parish Council was sanctioning a religious monument.”

“Returning Rodriguez’s volley, [which was that the monument is to be constructed on private property] Cook added, “It would be better if he would kiss the Constitution and honor it and honor the First Amendment.” [the insertion in bold is mine.]

“While the ACLU thinks a memorial to the storm and its victims is “clearly appropriate,” Cook said, ST. Bernard’s is “still all very questionable. I think there is official government involvement with the endorsement and advancement of this clearly religious symbol.”

Here are the “take away” phrases from Mr. Cook’s objections: “separation of church and state”, “a violation of the Constitution’s First Amendment, which prohibits government from advancing religion”, "Parish Council was sanctioning a religious movement”, “honor the First Amendment”.

Mr. Cook is advancing some pretty serious charges here regarding his perception of a grievous violation of the First Amendment of the Constitution. But is he right?

Let’s look at the First Amendment of the Constitution, the “freedom of speech” amendment:

“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.”

I have taken the liberty to highlight the portion of this amendment that is germane to Mr. Cook’s complaints.

The first thing that jumps out at one’s attention after reading the First Amendment is the obvious lack of the words “separation,” “of,” “church,” or “state”. The ACLU/liberal pet phrase, “separation of church and state” doesn’t even exist in the Constitution.

Hmm. Could it be that Mr. Cook, the ACLU, and liberals have been trying to pull a fast one on the American people all along by crying foul about abuses of the First Amendment that aren’t real in the first place with their phony charge of “separation of church and state”?

I would submit to anyone reading this post, a resounding affirmative!

While the phrase “separation of Church and State” doesn’t exist within the Constitution, a similar phrase, “wall of separation between Church and State” can be found in a letter that Thomas Jefferson sent to the Danbury Baptists Association in Connecticut. But, in this letter Jefferson is coming down on the side of religion and the nuance of the separation between the Church and State here is that the State should pretty much butt out. It has no say in religious matters.

Not only is the ACLU quoting Jefferson out of context, he himself wasn’t even the author of the Constitution. Yet, they persist in claiming the constitutionality of “separation of Church and State” in favor of using the government to suppress freedom of religious expression in the public square.

The portion of the First Amendment that addresses religion and the State, is two fold. The first half of the rejoinder is that the government is not permitted to establish an official State Religion, an official government sanctioned Church. The founding fathers knew full well that a large number of people immigrated to America in order to escape religious persecution. England, where the majority of immigrants came from, had established the Church of England and loyalty to it via attendance, tithes, and belief was mandatory. Those that deviated from the state’s church were in violation of the law, hence the persecution.

There was no way that this new nation was going to allow the same tyrannical practices creep into it, and so they nipped it in the bud by addressing the issue of any notion of compulsory State Church right away in the First Amendment by making it not legal for the government to establish any such official state sanctioned entity.

Having established the illegality of any such “state church”, the second rejoinder went on to declare that the government could not interfere with the citizen’s right to freedom of expression of his or her religion publicly.

Once again, the ACLU is using deceptive spin to try and deny yet another First Amendment right of citizens to express their religion through freedom of speech, and this time they are bold enough to pursue squelching this freedom of expression on private property!

Even if this case was about a memorial displayed on public property, the ACLU don’t have any case, whatsoever.

First off, a memorial cannot in any way be construed as a church. No one is being forced to attend the memorial, pay tithes to it out of their pockets, or adhere to any particular creed. It’s just a memorial plain and simple. So, it fails the “establishment of religion” portion of the First Amendment clause, as does any statues of the Ten Commandments, crosses in state flags etc.

Second, if liberals wish to restrict the First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and religious expression granted by the Constitution on public property, then all rights of freedom of speech have to be denied in the public square as well, in order to be consistent and fair.

This would mean goodbye to anti-war, anti-government protests in the public square. No more freedom to express discontent against the government publicly either.

Maybe this is the ultimate goal of liberals? Liberal philosophy is, at the worst end, in line with Marxist communism, or at least socialism on the other end of the spectrum. Either way, liberals are for big government dominating over the lives of its subjects. Maybe squelching religious freedom, a deeply personal, individualistic phenomenon is the first step in their overall plan to eventually kill all individualistic expressions and finally submerge the individual into the collective under the auspices of the nanny state government. Who knows?

The point is that the whole “separation of Church and State” rap is bogus. The ACLU and every liberal who spouts such nonsense is wrong and should be called out on it. Their deceptive spin should be exposed for what is: dishonesty used to trick people into accepting their anti-Christian biased agenda.

Atheists, like Michael Newdow, insist that the presence of “one nation under God” in our nation’s pledge of allegiance to the flag and the inscription of “in God we trust” on our currency is a violation of “Church and State”, an attempt to establish a state Religion. So he runs to the ACLU for help, and the ACLU, salivating profusely over the opportunity to throw religion out of the public square rushes to his aid with their slick lawyer spin tactics. They charge that there must be fairness for all. No one should ever feel oppressed or be upset and have to be exposed to any thing that doesn’t reflect their philosophical viewpoint.

This is nothing more than a big load of poppycock.

If you are ever placed in a position of leadership, one of the first things you learn is that you can’t please everyone. It’s not possible. Someone will always be in disagreement with the direction you are leading them to go. So, a good leader recognizes this, makes an informed decision on where to lead, and presses forward, nonetheless, but, not liberals. They claim to want to please everyone.

The problem is, that by pleasing people like Mr. Cook, and denying the display of the Katrina Memorial with the cross and image of Christ, you deny the rights of people who want the cross and image of Christ displayed. Why should the one be given all of what he or she wants at the expense of everyone else? How is that fair?

The atheist's complaint over “in God we trust” on money is just plain absurd. After all, how many people actually preoccupy their time by studying what is printed on our currency beyond the denominational value? No one in their right mind, that’s who. As for the pledge of allegiance, the solution is simple; don’t recite the “in God we trust” part if you don’t believe it. As for the display of the 10 Commandments, again it’s not all that complicated, just don’t look at it.

It’s amazing to me that secularists will get their panties in a wad over the possibility of the existence of a Christian bible study club in public schools, yet they have no problem, shoving the Theory of Evolution, (which is, a). just a theory and not a fact, and b). seriously disputed among scientific circles as to it’s veracity) down the throats of our school children.

I, for one, am offended that my children are being indoctrinated in such a fashion by a theory that is being treated as fact. What about my rights?

Mr. Cook, by the way, previously tried to equate the parents of a school board who wished to begin their meetings with prayer, to al Qaeda terrorists because they both pray. It always helps when ACLU liberals expose their idiocy to the public. You’ve got to love it.

It is really difficult for me to understand why anyone would support the ACLU. They aren’t trying to defend Constitutional rights. Rather, they are in the business of denying them by hook or by crook. “Separation of Church & State” is just one of the disingenuous tools that they will use in their bag of tricks. But, for a citizen who is armed with critical thinking skills, their tricks are transparent and easily refuted.

It’s really a shame that critical thinking skills aren’t taught in our public schools. Maybe there is a reason for that?


Blogger Simon said...

The church and the state should definately be separate. Irrational beliefs have no place in modern government.

1:32 AM  
Anonymous mark said...

If that's true then the Democrats should get out of politics. Global warming, believing higher taxes spur economic growth, appeasing terrorists, etc. doesn't sound very rational.

6:43 AM  

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