Religion & Government-


No Government Influence, but Plenty of Religious People Influence Toward Government

John R. Houk

© August 8, 2017

 

Interesting thoughts from “christine andme” at the G+ Community The United States Of America – 2ND REVOLUTION on my post ‘The Fallacy of “Separation of Church and State”’ posted at the NCCR blog.

 

Her thoughts are based on a 12/2016 video essay by the Youtube channel Call of Duty Goddess. The video title is “How America Passed a Law to Ban Islam”.

 

To the Shores of Tripoli

 

The Call of Duty Goddess outlines very coherently how Islam is incompatible with American Constitutional Law. She brings President Jefferson into her line of thinking based on the first Barbary Pirate was that occurred during Jefferson’s Administration. You should take the time to Google the two Barbary Pirate wars on which Jefferson failed to bring a total victory for the USA. Jefferson’s military action was successful but instead of forcing a complete capitulation from the Muslim pirates, Jefferson tried a diplomatic mission thinking like a Westerner and tried a peace that attempted a mutual common good. Meaning Jefferson gave cash and more to the Muslims and in return the U.S. received some freed American slaves (as in White people captured) and American prisoners. Jefferson’s largesse only temporarily placated the Muslim pirates because they upped their raids of American ship again including making crew and passengers slaves and/or prisoners.

 

The video’s is a bit misleading because there was no 1786 law prohibiting the practice of Islam on American shores. Rather the Call of Duty Goddess using an experience that Thomas Jefferson wrote in a letter of a meeting between then Ambassadors Thomas Jefferson and John Adams had with Sidi Haji Abdul Rahman Adj, Tripoli’s ambassador to Britain to fellow Ambassador John Jay. Jefferson quotes the Tripoli Ambassador informing:

 

“Was founded on the Laws of their Prophet, that it was written in their Qur’an, that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as Prisoners, and that every Musselman (Muslim) who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.” (Obama Could Learn From Thomas Jefferson’s 1801 Response to Muslims During the Barbary Coast War; By Steve Straub; The Federalist Papers; 10/14/14)

 

The Call of Duty Goddess (and apparently several other historical pieces I have perused) believes this early experience with Islam was the push that the later President Jefferson to take military action against the Barbary Pirates.

 

After outlining the incompatibility of Islam with the American Constitution coupled with Jefferson’s presumed mindset on Islam, the Call of Duty Goddess this is the reasoning there is a Separation of Church and State in the Constitution.

 

I can only concur with the Call of Duty Goddess ONLY in the sense that government is separated from religion, BUT religion is not separate from being an influence on government. AND since a significant majority of the Founding Fathers (yes even American Deists like Jefferson) were quite amiable to Judeo-Christian morality, this was the influence expected to keep America good.

 

Since christine mentions Slovakia banning Islam in her post, I thought I’d provide a bit of an update on the Slovakia law. It is true such a ban was passed by the Slovakian legislature on 11/30/16. However, Slovakia’s President Andrej Kiska vetoed the Slovakian legislature on 12/20/16. Fox News reports on 1/31/17 that the Slovakian legislature overrode Kiska’s veto.

 

JRH 8/8/17

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Agreeing with Main Point- ‘Fallacy of Church/State Separation’

 

By christine andme

August 7, 2017

The United States of America – 2nd Revolution

 

I totally agree with the main point of that message.

I want to mention one interesting notion regarding ‘separation of church and state’. The creator of the below video believes it was meant to protect Americans from religions such as Islam. That became law in 1786, which was the same year Thomas Jefferson met with ‘barbaric pirates’ to discuss the jizya (tax that infidels had to pay to Muslims) which was as large as 6% of total budget then. Jefferson studied Koran and figured Islam is intertwined with politics because it comes with Sharia law, and that pushed founding fathers to establish the law to ‘separate church and state’. The video publisher says that is her opinion, and actually that notion is the supporting argument of hers to ultimately assert ‘U.S. passed a law in 1786 to ban Islam from being registered as a religion’ ‘just as Slovakia recently did’.

I have heard that ‘separation of church and state’ is meant that churches wanted to make sure that government would not interfere with churches, which I believed. I also agree that what ACLU etc. is trying to do is simply wrong based on their misinterpretation of the 1st amendment. I don’t know why the factor of Islam has not been discussed by more scholars (well, I think I know: it is the same reason why the fact that Jihad killed 270 million people has not been taught in the US History textbooks…) Anyway, I thought ‘Islam’ being one reason for the ‘separation of church and state’ was interesting perspective.
VIDEO: How America Passed a Law to Ban Islam

 

Posted by  Call of Duty Goddess

Published on Dec 3, 2016
Slovakia Passes Law to BAN ISLAM from Being Registered as a Religion
http://freedomoutpost.com/slovakia-passes-law-to-ban-islam-from-being-registered-as-a-religion/

Islam: Governing Under Sharia
https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/islam-governing-under-sharia

Islam 101 – 7 – Sharia
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qdKSgIwK_6U

Understanding Islamic Law
http://www.islamicsupremecouncil.org/understanding-islam/legal-rulings/52-understanding-islamic-law.html

Muslims Want Sharia Law in Non-Muslim Countries Robert Spencer
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0FpDCZdvHk [Blog Editor: This Youtube account was terminated by Youtube]

YOUR RIGHT TO RELIGIOUS FREEDOM
https://www.aclu.org/other/your-right-religious-freedom [Blog Editor: Always be wary of ACLU hatred of Christianity]

Religion and the Founding of the American Republic
https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/religion/rel01.html

Religion and the Founding of the American Republic [Pt 2]
https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/religion/rel01-2.html

Cornerstone Documents in Virginia and American History: An Act for Establishing Religious Freedom
https://youtu.be/KwAxl701RUo

THE TRUTH OF THE MARINE CORP ANTHEM AND THE UNITED STATES WAR WITH RADICAL ISLAM
https://whtwolf74.wordpress.com/2013/09/13/the-truth-of-the-marine-corp-anthem-and-the-united-states-war-with-radical-islam/

Image 2 of American Peace Commissioners to John Jay, March 28, 1786
https://www.loc.gov/resource/mtj1.005_0430_0433/?sp=2

When Thomas Jefferson Read the Qur’an
http://www.libertylawsite.org/2015/03/26/when-thomas-jefferson-read-the-quran/

 

___________________

Religion & Government-

No Government Influence, but Plenty of Religious People Influence Toward Government

John R. Houk

© August 8, 2017

__________________

Agreeing with Main Point- ‘Fallacy of Church/State Separation’

 

Blog Editor: The title is by the Editor. Christine’s post is edited. Text and links in the video quoted material enclosed by brackets are by the Editor.

 

Christian-Americans Let Votes Be a Voice to Leadership


Marines capture Derna 1805

Islam is at War – Respond to IT!

 

John R. Houk

© March 13, 2016

 

The Knights of Columbus and In Defense of Christians (IDC) collaborated recently on a near 300-page report on Muslims committing genocide against Christians. I first heard of this report on Fox News but I was reminded today of it by an email update from ASSIST News Service (ANS) entitled “NEW REPORT SHOWS IRREFUTABLE EVIDENCE OF GENOCIDE AGAINST CHRISTIANS BY ISLAMIC STATE”.

 

The was compiled expressly for Secretary of State John Kerry and the State Department. The Knights of Columbus and IDC used the report as a pretext to call on America to step up to the plate and publicly declare genocide is occurring against Christians in the Middle East with a particular focus on ISIS as the perpetrator.

 

In early February 2016 Obama spokesman Josh Earnest said this about calling the slaughter of Christians genocide:

 

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest admitted Thursday that the Obama administration’s hesitation to label the Islamic State’s persecution of Christians and other religious minorities as “genocide” is because of the legal ramifications behind such a designation. (White House Details Why Obama Won’t Call ISIS’ Slaughtering of Christians ‘Genocide’; By SAMUEL SMITH; Christian Post; 2/5/16 11:13 am)

 

He said WHAT? “Legal Ramifications”!

 

Christians and other non-Muslims (ISIS classifies Shias as non-Muslims also) are being slaughtered en masse and Obama is looking at the legal ramifications of labeling the slaughter as genocide.

 

The Christian Post further reports Earnest’s representation of Obama:

 

… Earnest assured that “administration lawyers” were looking into the possibility of a genocide designation.

 

“There are lawyers considering whether or not that term can be properly applied in this scenario,” Earnest said. “What is clear and what is undeniable and what the president has now said twice in the last 24 hours is that we know that there are religious minorities in Iraq and in Syria, including Christians, that are being targeted by ISIL terrorists because of their religion and that attack on religious minorities is an attack on all people of faith and it is important for all of us to stand up and speak out about it.” (Ibid.)

 

So it is important for Obama to bring Muslims displaced by war in Syria-Iraq for their safety BUT he has to think about it when it comes to Christians being slaughtered by Muslims.

 

Obama wants to look the other way while Christians are killed yet he made sure to assure American voters he was a Christian prior to his 2008 election. Before his 2008 election as President he was concerned enough of what Americans thought about his faith that he went out of his way to let voters know he was a committed Christian:

 

“I’ve been to the same church _ the same Christian church _ for almost 20 years,” Obama said, stressing the word Christian and drawing cheers from the faithful in reply. “I was sworn in with my hand on the family Bible. Whenever I’m in the United States Senate, I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. So if you get some silly e-mail … send it back to whoever sent it and tell them this is all crazy. Educate.” (Obama sets record straight on his religion; By AP; NBCNews.com; updated 1/21/2008 10:49:46 AM ET)

 

Obama was the 20-year member of a Church pastored by Jeremiah Wright who preached Black Liberation Theology – Hate Whitey and G-d damn America – and was cozy with Father Pfleger and racist anti-Semite Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan.

 

I think this gives a bit more insight into Obama checking into the legal ramifications of naming the extermination of Christians as genocide in the Middle East.

 

So what exactly is wrong with stating the obvious about genocide in the Middle East? The obvious is Islam promotes war with the West and these days against Israel and America the land of the free and the home of the brave (unless Obama screws up America more than any real American can fix). So let’s get over offending Islam and perhaps really begin offending the haters of America with WWII-style rules of engagement and smack these guys around even if civilians foolish enough to support radical Muslim movements or governments get in the way.

 

But John, one might say, that’s not politically correct when we should respect diverse peoples and cultures in this new global age we live in.

 

Man that is some horse-pucky that will end the American way of life before Obama transformationists do.

 

Well John, another might say, can you name anytime in America’s history when war or military action was used because of the doctrines of Islam? Why should Obama be the first American President to understand that Islamic doctrines are not only harmful to American National Security but also to American Interests at home and abroad?

 

Some trace the lineage of the Democratic Party back to an earlier President. So it is a bit insightful to understand the political climate that President lived in to make a decision about Islam.

Thomas Jefferson

That early President was Thomas Jefferson the third person to hold the Office of POTUS. He was elected to two terms of Office serving between 1801 – 1809. As one of the Founding Fathers Jefferson penned the text to the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson wasn’t directly involved at the Constitutional Convention that eventually formed the Constitution our nation has operated under since 1789. Jefferson’s lack of involvement was largely due to his diplomatic status to France first as a trade commissioner and eventually ambassadorial role replacing Benjamin Franklin.

 

Although Jefferson had no direct tie to the making of the Constitution he was still an influence because the primary framer of the Constitution – James Madison – modeled the framework a lot from Virginia’s State Constitution in which Jefferson was very involved in.

 

This excerpt from Constitution Daily sums up Jefferson’s thoughts from France on the new Constitution while the then 13 States debated its ratification:

 

While in Paris before the Constitutional Convention, Jefferson closely followed developments in the United States. He corresponded with individuals who would eventually contribute to the formation of the Constitution, like Madison and John Jay, an author of the Federalist Papers.

 

 

… On June 6th, Madison wrote a letter to Jefferson with a list of the individuals attending the Convention, but explained that he couldn’t reveal more about the substance of the ongoing debates because the delegates agreed that the proceedings should be kept secret.

 

Jefferson expressed his frustration with the secrecy of the Convention, but he did share some ideas with Madison while it was ongoing. For example, Jefferson wrote to Madison on June 20th explaining why the federal government should not be given the power to veto laws passed by the states. This federal power was not included in the final draft of the Constitution despite Madison’s support of the idea.

 

On September 6th, Madison wrote a letter to Jefferson detailing some key provisions that were going to be included in the Constitution, as he reasoned that by the time the letter would arrive in France the details of the Constitution would be made public. Madison explained how state and federal governments were to be organized, and noted that some of the provisions may “surprise” Jefferson.

 

On December 20th, 1787, after the Constitutional Convention was over and while the ratification of the Constitution was being debated in state legislatures, Jefferson wrote a letter to Madison objecting to key parts of the Constitution. Among other things, Jefferson was concerned that the document lacked a Bill Of Rights and failed to establish term limits for federal officials. In earlier correspondences to other acquaintances, in 1786 Jefferson extolled government protection of civil liberties and wrote, for example, that “our liberty depends on the freedom of the press”. Jefferson also was a proponent of protections for religious liberty and wrote the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, which passed the Virginia General Assembly in 1786.

 

By the fall of 1788, Madison was convinced that the inclusion of a Bill Of Rights to the new Constitution would be prudent. While advocating for a bill of rights, Madison relied upon an argument first articulated by Jefferson – that a list of rights would help give the judiciary the power to ensure that other branches of governments would not infringe on citizens’ civil liberties. (A quick look at Thomas Jefferson’s constitutional legacy; By NCC StaffConstitution Daily; 11/24/15)

 

Supporters of the Constitution were called Federalists and those that opposed a central government stronger than the authority of State governments were labeled Anti-Federalists. George Washington and John Adams were the first and only Federalists elected to Office under the eventually ratified Constitution. After Constitutional ratification the Federalists tended to favor the new nations wealthy elites and a stronger central government. The Anti-Federalists became the camp that favored States’ rights over Federal or national government authority and lined up more with land owners that weren’t necessarily wealthy but were self-supporting agrarians in some fashion or another. Federalists gravitated around Alexander Hamilton and the Anti-Federalists gravitated around Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.

 

After the Constitution took effect the label “Anti-Federalist” gave way to the notion of a Republic with democratically elected leaders. Hence without any real political organization the group found the label or Democratic-Republican who under the simplicity of colloquialism were simply called Republicans. Modern historians will often write Democratic-Republican to differentiate from the Republican Party which exists today and whose first POTUS holder was Abraham Lincoln elected in 1860 and served from 1861 – 1865 with his second term cut short by assassination.

 

My point is the new nation was divided into political factions that were not organized politically as they are today. Ironically factions were divided between those that favored Britain or France who were still in hostility in which the American Revolution was only a subset of the decades of hostilities that existed between Britain and France. By the time of Jefferson’s Presidency, the French Revolution dethroned the French King that aided American Revolution victory. The new France devolved into violent retribution against France’s Nobility class in the name of egalitarian fraternity and democracy which ended with the despotism of Napoleon Bonaparte.

 

During these early years of the American Republic the new Federal government concentrated on domestic issues and a reduced military presence which meant no money to create a navy fleet. Foreign trade protection was first done by the British navy and after the American Revolution a short time of French protection. Definitely by the time of Bonaparte’s reign American foreign trade received no protection from either Britain or France.

 

When Americans attempted trade efforts that brought them within the reach of North Africa, particularly in the Mediterranean Sea pirates began boarding American commercial vessels, stealing goods, kidnapping or killing Americans AND placing captured Americans who couldn’t pay ransom into slavery.

 

Guess what kind of culture these pirates came from? If you haven’t guessed yet how about a clue. In the modern age which culture still kidnaps, kills and enslaves (particularly sex-slaves today)?

 

There is only one answer – ISLAM!

 

What was Thomas Jefferson’s experience and/or knowledge of Islam? An excerpt from DownTrend.com shows Jefferson’s first contact with a Muslim as while on a diplomatic mission in Great Britain:

 

In 1786, Jefferson and John Adams met with Tripoli’s ambassador to Great Britain. They asked this ‘diplomat’ by what right his nation attacked American ships and enslaved her citizens and why the Muslims held such hostility toward this new nation, with which neither Tripoli nor any of the other Barbary Coast nations had any previous contact. The answer was quite revealing. Sidi Haji Abdul Rahman Adja (the ambassador) replied that Islam:

 

Was founded on the Laws of their Prophet, that it was written in their Qur’an, that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as Prisoners, and that every Musselman (Muslim) who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.” (Interesting Look Back At First American War Against Islam; By JOSEPH R. CARDUCCI; DownTrend.com; 10/11/14)

 

A Patheos article penned by an atheist explains Jefferson’s outrage also before becoming POTUS at having to pay ransoms and tribute to Islamic Barbary Pirates:

 

Jefferson attempted to create a coalition of tribute-paying European countries who would each contribute one or more war ships and jointly patrol the Mediterranean for Barbary pirates. Sometime before July 4, 1786, Jefferson drafted the Proposed Convention against the Barbary States to arrange the matter. … Jefferson’s proposal to spread the risk was met with a lack of interest from both the American Congress and European nations. As a result, America continued to lose ships to Barbary piracy for several more years.

 

It wasn’t until Jefferson became president that the U.S. ceased paying tribute and quietly launched the newly formed American navy to combat, particularly, the aggression from Tripoli. Thus began the first Barbary War in 1801, which ended in 1805 with a treaty that put a stop to the tributes and cleared the Mediterranean for the safe passage of American merchant ships. (In 1807, Algiers started taking American ships again, and it took until 1815 for America to address it militarily. This second Barbary War lasted two days and finally put an end to piracy from North Africa.)

 

 

Jefferson was the only founding father to take an active interest in Islam. He purchased his own copy of the Koran long before America’s encounters with the Barbary. His copy of George Sale’s English translation of the Koran was shipped from London in 1765 and can be viewed today at the Library of Congress. There is some speculation that this is a second copy because Jefferson possibly lost his first copy in the May 26, 1771, fire at his mother’s home. The Koran in the Library of Congress contains no written notes or comments by Jefferson (possibly because it’s a second copy), and his initials are his only inscription, although they appear curiously close to some verses regarding warfare. (Thomas Jefferson’s Struggle with Islamic Brutality; By Hemant Mehta; Patheos; 10/29/15)

 

Jefferson’s next step was after he became President. He cancelled the tribute blackmail and went after the Islamic Barbary Pirates for attacking, killing and enslaving Americans. Monticello.org gives a decent rundown of the Islamic Barbary Pirates in relation to Thomas Jefferson through at least the First Barbary War. At Monticello.org you will discover the USA bowed to paying extortion tribute to the Barbary semi-autonomous states through the first two Presidents even while Jefferson was Secretary of State.

 

Early in June, barely three months after the inauguration a small squadron — three frigates and a schooner — sailed for the Mediterranean under Commodore Richard Dale. If they found on arrival that war had been declared, the squadron was to protect American shipping from the corsairs and to “chastise their insolence … by sinking, burning, or destroying their ships and vessels wherever you shall find them.” It was also to blockade the harbor of any of the regencies that had declared war on America and, to the extent possible, was to convoy merchantmen when asked.  In addition, Commodore Dale was to take to Algiers and Tunis letters, gifts for the rulers, tribute payments in the case of Algiers and assurances to both rulers that overdue tribute was soon to be forthcoming on other vessels. And, he was to go to Tripoli. There he would deliver the President’s letter to the pasha and, if still at peace, could give Cathcart money for a gift to the pasha.18

 

Jefferson’s letter to Pasha Qaramanli emphasized “our sincere desire to cultivate peace & commerce with your subjects.” Also mentioned was our dispatch to the Mediterranean of “a squadron of observation” whose appearance [we hope] will give umbrage to no power.” The squadron’s purpose, the letter explained, was to exercise our seamen and to “superintend the safety of our commerce…[which] we mean to rest…on the resources of our own strength & bravery in every sea.”19 Meanwhile, Secretary Madison wrote American consuls in the Mediterranean that the President, convinced “of the hostile purposes of the Bashaw of Tripoli” was sending a naval squadron to protect our commerce in the Mediterranean and to respond appropriately to any powers who declared war on the United States.20

 

Unfortunately, the pasha had not waited to hear from the new president. Yusuf Qaramanli declared war on the United States on May 14, 1801 by chopping down the flagpole at the American consulate in Tripoli.21

 

On arrival at Gibraltar July 1, Commodore Dale learned we were at war with Tripoli. During the next few months, squadron vessels blocked two Tripolitan corsairs in Gibraltar, delivered goods and messages in Algiers, Tunis and Tripoli, escorted American merchant ships, and briefly blockaded Tripoli harbor. In the only real action that year, the schooner Enterprize engaged and soundly defeated the Tripolitan ship Tripoli off the coast of Malta on August 1.22

 

… Two months later Congress passed an act authorizing him to instruct naval commanders to seize Tripolitan goods and vessels, and to commission privateers to aid in the effort.23

 

During the following three years the pasha maintained his demands and the United States, rotating ships and crews, maintained its naval presence in the Mediterranean as well as diplomatic efforts to make peace. In 1802 Jefferson was reportedly of the view “that the time is come when negociations [sic] may advantageously take place.” He was to be disappointed.24 Tripolitan corsairs evaded the blockade and American merchantmen were captured. Most escaped their captors; only one was carried into port, the Franklin, in 1802, and the five Americans on it were quickly ransomed. In Algiers, Richard O’Brien sarcastically remarked without comment: “It is asserted that there are at sea, at present, six sail of Tripoline corsairs & it is asserted that the frigates of the United States & those of Sweden are blockading Tripoli.”25 Nor did the blockade stop Tripoli’s trade with other Barbary powers. It did, however, interfere with it, and the other rulers sided with the pasha. The possibility of Tunis and/or Morocco entering the war became a serious concern off and on throughout 1802.

 

… “They know they cannot meet us with force any more than they could France, Spain or England,” he wrote from Monticello at the end of March. “Their system is a war of little expense to them, which must put the great nations to a greater expense than the presents which would buy it off.”26 He was still as much against buying peace and paying tribute as he had been since first dealing with Barbary in 1784; it was a matter of principle. But one had to be practical as well as principled.27

 

 

The most important naval action in 1803 involved the frigate Philadelphia, which ran aground near Tripoli in October. The pasha imprisoned the 307-man crew and refloated and repaired the stricken vessel. Before they could make any use of her, though, on February 16, 1804 a U.S. navy team under Lt. Stephen Decatur slipped into Tripoli harbor after dark and set fires on board that totally destroyed the Philadelphia. The loss of the frigate weakened the American squadron, while captives from the Philadelphia gave the pasha new leverage and prospects of substantial ransom.31

 

When news of the Philadelphia’s loss reached America, Jefferson and his colleagues began looking for a way to send at least two more frigates to the Mediterranean. Congress rallied behind the President and the navy, approving a new tax and new expenditures for the war.32 After initial political and public criticism of the president due to the devastating loss, widespread public support was stimulated by Stephen Decatur’s successful stealth mission under Tripoli’s guns.33

 

… in 1804, he decided the current squadron was not big enough to do the job. Newly-appointed Commodore Samuel Barron would command eleven vessels, “a force which would be able, beyond the possibility of a doubt, to coerce the enemy to a peace on terms compatible with our honor and our interest.”35  The expanded squadron would be more than twice the size of the original one three years earlier and its mix of frigates, brigs and smaller vessels would be better suited to its mission.

 

 

After arriving on the scene, if Barron judged it expedient he was authorized to support an overland attack on Tripoli by forces supporting the restoration to power of Hamet Qaramanli, an older brother ousted in a 1796 coup by Pasha Yusuf Qaramanli. That idea had been proposed in 1801 by James Cathcart and also by William Eaton who knew the exiled Hamet in Tunis when he was American consul there. The proposal had received qualified approval from Secretary of State Madison in 1802.37

 

 

Barron had doubts about involving Hamet, but Eaton and Captain Preble persuaded him. November 16 Eaton sailed on the brig Argus to find Hamet in Egypt. Barron may have expected Eaton to bring Hamet to Syracuse for a consultation40—that is unclear—but having eventually located him, Eaton helped the ex-pasha put together a collection of a few hundred armed Arabs and Greeks, mostly mercenaries under a handful of disparate leaders. Eaton, Hamet and several marines marched their “army’ nearly 500 miles through the desert along the southern shore of the Mediterranean and, on April 27, 1805, they captured the town of Derne, some miles east of Benghazi. The Argus and two sister ships supplied them with provisions along their march and actively supported them in the taking of Derne (where Hamet had been governor three years before under his brother Yusuf). In the meantime, the American blockade of Tripoli had been maintained through the winter and spring.

 

… Then, May 18, he wrote Tobias Lear that, from what he had learned of Hamet Qaramanli, he could no longer support the plan involving the ex-pasha. He noted that the condition of some of his vessels and periods of enlistment of his personnel precluded another winter of blockade, was concerned about the fate of the American prisoners held by the pasha, and thought it time to respond to encouraging hints from Tripoli favoring negotiation. Not mentioned, but no doubt also on his mind, his health would not permit him to lead an attack on Tripoli that summer.42  Indeed, he handed command of the squadron to Captain John Rodgers less than a week later.

 

Lear sailed from Syracuse for Tripoli May 24th. Negotiations began shortly after his arrival, preliminary articles were agreed June 3 and the American captives from the Philadelphia were embarked on US vessels June 4. The final document was signed on the tenth. It involved neither payment for peace nor annual tribute. Based on the difference between the numbers of captives held on the two sides, ransom of $60,000 was agreed, well below the limit given Lear. Far to the east, the Americans, Hamet and his close associates left Derne on board American naval vessels June 12.  The Senate ratified the treaty April 12, 1806.43

 

There is MORE before and after this excerpt (The First Barbary War; Original article by Elizabeth Huff, August 2, 2011; revised and expanded by Priscilla and Richard Roberts, September 26, 2011. Monticello.org)

 

The Battle of Derna circa April 27, 1805 is what sealed the deal of the First Barbary War. The details of which are worth the read but I’ve already exceeded the purpose of writing about America’s first encounter of military action against Muslim principles of humiliating and dishonoring non-Muslims.

Stephen Decatur boarding Tripolitan gunboat reduced size

Apparently Obama has much in common with President Thomas Jefferson in that Jefferson listened to his advisors to use diplomatic efforts – including extortion payments – to negotiate a peace deal with the Islamic Barbary Pirates. However, Jefferson did finally come to the conclusion that the lack of military was costing the American National Interests more than diplomacy and extortion money. Hence the Marines sailed to the shores of Tripoli to kick some Muslim butt free Americans enslaved by Muslims and at least force an agreement not to attack American commerce.

 

The Second Barbary War (aka Algerine or Algerian War) had Congressional approval March 3, 2016. Two Commodores were given fleets to take action. Commodore Stephen Decatur (same guy who as a Lieutenant led the assault on Derna and the Tripoli raid that torched the captured the ship Philadelphia in the First Barbary War) got their first and engaged the Algerian Dey’s fleet, defeated it and forced a surrender by June 29, 1815. The Algerian Dey signed the terms of the Treaty July 3, 1815. (See Wikipedia, U. of Michigan and USWars.net)

 

The thing Obama is missing about Islam is you have to severely spank it to get its leaders – whether from a nation or terrorists. If you want to stop the genocide of Christians and stop importing American-hating Muslim from Syria-Iraq, a severe military response will be REQUIRED.

 

JRH 3/13/16

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THOMAS JEFFERSON AND RADICAL ISLAM’S WAR ON THE WEST

America’s historical entanglement with the “religion of peace”

 

By David L. Hunter

Nov-Dec 2015 Issue

Think-Israel

 

Those that assume that radical Islam is a modern phenomenon that became prominent during Bill Clinton’s tenure as president in the 1990s merely scratch the historical surface of America’s complicated political entanglement with the Middle East’s supposed “religion of peace.” In truth, the tentacles of radical Islam go all the way back to Thomas Jefferson.

 

Historically, Thomas Jefferson was the first U.S. president to go to war against belligerent Islam. The American Revolution from English imperialism had left the fledgling republic deeply in debt. Trade of America’s vast natural resources of lumber, animal skins and crops with Europe was the economic answer. However, European markets, a traditional mercantile system, were not open to American commodities. Complicating matters was the fact that America had no navy to protect American cargo ships from Barbary pirates who were known to kidnap foreigners for ransom. Further, due to American independence, the U.S. could no longer depend upon the British Royal Navy—the greatest in the world at that time—nor the King of England, who customarily paid “tribute” (protection money) to North African pashas and the Sultan of Morocco.

 

In May of 1784 the Continental Congress dispatched Jefferson to Paris first as trade commissioner and later as ambassador to France. Very early on in the process he became aware of an unexpected reality: Christian-American hostages were being enslaved by violent Muslims. Contrary to rumor and the popular belief of the time, these North African predators were not the stereotypical pirates out for booty: wine, women, adventure and song. These “Barbary Pirates” were in fact just typical Middle Eastern Muslims known then as Mahometans or Mussulmen who did not consume alcohol and prayed to Allah several times a day. They crewed the ships of the Mediterranean Sea’s Islamic city-states and their efforts to capture cargo and passenger vessels were both economic and religious. Like today’s terrorists, these predecessors called themselves Mujahidin or “soldiers in the Jihad” and engaged in holy war against the West. Not much has changed in 200 years.

 

The Mujahidin knew the Union Jack, but they didn’t know the Stars and Stripes. Not that it mattered then or now: All foreigners and non-Muslims were targets. Jefferson foresaw the danger and spent the fall of 1784 studying Islam as well as fellow diplomats’ treatment of the long-standing issue. Specifically, in March of 1785, future presidents Thomas Jefferson and John Adams went to London to negotiate with Tripoli’s envoy, Ambassador Sidi Haji Abdrahaman. When they inquired into the Mujadhins’ propensity “to make war upon nations who had done them no injury,” the ambassador replied:

 

It was written in their Koran, that all nations which had not acknowledged the Prophet were sinners, whom it was the right and duty of the faithful to plunder and enslave; and that every Mussulman who was slain in this warfare was sure to go to paradise. He said, also, that the man who was the first to board a vessel had one slave over and above his share, and that when they sprang to the deck of an enemy’s ship, every sailor held a dagger in each hand and a third in his mouth; which usually struck such terror into the foe that they cried out for quarter at once.

 

Jefferson argued correctly that paying “tribute” to Muslim extremism would encourage further malfeasance: “infidel” enslavement, hostage-taking and ship hijacking had already plagued Europe for a thousand years. Although John Adams concurred, as America had no standing navy, the circumstance forced the new, debt-ridden nation to pay a hefty 1 million dollar tithe (approximately 10% of the U.S. government’s annual revenues in 1800), a government entitlement program for terrorists that went on for 15 years. Like the monarchies of Europe, Jefferson’s Democratic-Republicans were focused on Western expansion and did not want those efforts stymied by useless armed conflicts in the Old World. The money guaranteed safe passage of American ships and/or the return of American hostages.

 

Like today in the West’s continuing quest for crude oil instead of developing comparable domestic resources, the price remains high to do business with the barbarous Middle East. In Jefferson’s time, British merchants, British and French royalty and virtually every maritime trading country in Christian Europe capitulated to the extortion rather than shift resources from burgeoning global empire-building elsewhere. However, Jefferson realized that any peaceful arrangement with the Mujahidin was a temporary fix, which would ultimately lead to greater and greater demands.

 

Unlike the Obama doctrine of continued appeasement and hollow political “victories” not worth the paper they are written on, Thomas Jefferson wanted to fight. However, certain precincts of the U.S. government reacted haphazardly to continued acts of terrorism. In late 1793, the mass hijacking of U.S. ships by Muslims had a 9/11 effect on the U.S. economy. Four months later, on March 27, 1794, Congress—after debating the subject periodically over a decade—finally decided to build a fleet of warships: six extra-large frigates. In essence, the United States Navy was born in response to unprovoked Muslim aggression.

 

After 17 years of calling for war against Islamic extremism represented by Barbary piracy, it was not until 1801 as America’s third president that Mr. Jefferson dispatched a naval squadron of four warships to the Mediterranean to engage in a four-year war off the shores of Tripoli. Sporadically, a Western power would bombard Muslim port cities in response to the ongoing threat, but nothing ends the seemingly endless Christian-Islamic religious conflict. As history demonstrates, Obama’s political realities mirror Jefferson’s. However, Mr. Obama’s cowardly head-in-the-sand reaction is in direct opposition to Jefferson’s Reaganesque show of strength.

 

Given the terrorist atrocities of September 11, 2001, the historic date of September 11, 1683 also comes clearly into focus. That was a turning point in human history: the defeat of the Islamic armies of the Ottoman Empire and the Islamic caliphate by Christian forces at the gates of Vienna. From that moment until the recent times, Christian or Western powers would dominate the Muslim world. Radical Islam seeks to violently overturn that arrangement through modern savagery and continuous warfare.

___________________

Christian-Americans Let Votes Be a Voice to Leadership

John R. Houk

© March 13, 2016

 

Websites Examined for Source Info

 

http://freedomoutpost.com/barbary-wars-how-thomas-jefferson-led-americas-first-war-on-terror/

 

https://history.state.gov/milestones/1801-1829/barbary-wars

 

http://www.fsmitha.com/h3/h27b-pirx.html

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democratic-Republican_Party

 

http://www.britannica.com/topic/Democratic-Republican-Party

 

https://www.gilderlehrman.org/history-by-era/early-republic/timeline-terms/democratic-republican-party

 

http://us-political-parties.insidegov.com/l/7/Democratic-Republican-Party

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THOMAS JEFFERSON AND RADICAL ISLAM’S WAR ON THE WEST

 

David L. Hunter is a DC-based freelance writer whose work has been published in The Washington Times, The Washington Post and American Thinker. This article appeared May 19, 2015 in Frontpage Magazine and is archived at 
http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/257151/thomas-jefferson-radical-islams-war-west-david-l-hunter.

 

The painting by Dennis Malone Carter of American navy men led by Stephen Decatur boarding a Tripolitan gunboat on August 3, 1804 is not part of the original article. The painting depicts Decatur and the Muslim captain (the two men slightly right of center in the painting) in mortal combat; Decatur (in sailor whites) is pulling out a gun; the captain (white turban) holds a sword in his upraised arm. The episode is vividly described in “Stephen Decatur and the Barbary Pirates” on the Extraordinary Lives of Intrepid Gentlemen website and is archived at
http://www.intrepidgentlemen.com/2012/06/11/stephn-decatur-and-the-barbary-pirates/.

 

 

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Religion and the Constitution


One Nation Under God. John McNaughton

A Precursor to ‘OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS’

 

John R. Houk

© March 4, 2015

(Read ‘Our Constitutional Rights’ by Robert Smith below)

 

Robert Smith stipulates that the U.S. Constitution does not validate any rights for those who practice a homosexual lifestyle. And he is correct. Smith’s reasoning by correctly stating God Almighty considers the practice of homosexuality an abomination.

 

Homosexual Activists and Leftist believers of a Living Constitution (as opposed to an Original Intent Constitution) stick to the position that the Constitution updates itself according to the cultural times we exist in. Hence, homosexuals are entitled to the same Rights as heterosexuals because culture accepts homosexuality as normal.

 

Supporters of Original Intent combined with Biblical Christians take the stand that America’s Founding Documents are highly influenced by Colonial America’s dedication to the Christian faith. The Original Intent/Biblical Christian block point to the dedication to God through Jesus Christ by a majority of America’s earliest colonialists to the influence of America’s Christian heritage. Ergo, since America’s foundations are Christian, Constitutional Rights and Liberties are assured via a Judeo-Christian mindset.

 

Separation of Church/State Leftists and unfortunately a few Conservatives demand the First Amendment forbids government to define the Rule of Law through the eyes of religion meaning Christianity. Actually the First Amendment says NO SUCH THING. The First Amendment doesn’t even use the words that Church and State must be separated. What specifically does the First Amendment say?

 

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. (First Amendment; Legal Information Institute [LII] – Cornell University Law School)

 

The Supreme Court decides Constitutional issues. The Supreme Court has too often read the First Amendment as religion cannot be a criteria in any fashion within the framework of any government entity: Local, State and Federal. In the case of separation of Church and State the Supreme Court has used the horrible decision of a past Supreme Court to enlist and misinterpret a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to a Baptist Church which did not enjoy the benefits of an individual State that institutionalized a specific Protestant Denomination which was not Baptist. To be clear in the early days of our Constitutional government individual States did have State Churches supported by the State government. The Supreme Court NEVER ended the State practice, rather on a State by State basis individual States joined the U.S. (i.e. Federal government) Constitution First Amendment prohibition of government (i.e. Federal government) establish a State Church. It was duly recognized that the Federal government could not establish a State Church but in a Tenth Amendment fashion each individual State decided the Church/State issue. Further the First Amendment speaks to nothing pertaining to religion (and everybody understood religion to mean Christianity) influencing government but ONLY that government cannot interfere in religious activities whatsoever.

 

Who was that Justice that wrote the majority opinion that prohibited religion from all things government which in effect extra-constitutionally enshrined separation of Church and State? It was Justice Hugo Black in the SCOTUS decision of 1947 in Everson vs. the Board of Education. Just to be clear. Did your read the year? It was 1947 two years after WWII. Before Hugo Black, religious activity within public (i.e. government locations, schools and even legislative bodies) functions of various Christian Denominations including the Catholic Church was a common occurrence.

 

New Hampshire became the required 9th State needed to ratify the U.S. Constitution on 6/21/1788. The constitutional Federal government began operation on 3/4/1789. In doing the math that means religion and government interacted freely for 158 years with the Federal Government forbidden to tell religious practitioners how to worship or practice their faith.

 

Daniel L. Dreisbach lays out the false reasoning of Justice Hugo Black which began a Case Law foundation to keep religion from influencing or contributing to government:

 

 

In our own time, the judiciary has embraced this figurative phrase as a virtual rule of constitutional law and as the organizing theme of church-state jurisprudence, even though the metaphor is nowhere to be found in the U.S. Constitution. In Everson v. Board of Education (1947), the United States Supreme Court was asked to interpret the First Amendment’s prohibition on laws “respecting an establishment of religion.” …

 

 

… At the dawn of the 19th century, Jefferson’s Federalist opponents, led by John Adams, dominated New England politics, and the Congregationalist church was legally established in Massachusetts and Connecticut. The Baptists, who supported Jefferson, were outsiders–a beleaguered religious and political minority in a region where a Congregationalist-Federalist axis dominated political life.

 

On New Year’s Day, 1802, President Jefferson penned a missive to the Baptist Association of Danbury, Connecticut. The Baptists had written the President a “fan” letter in October 1801, congratulating him on his election to the “chief Magistracy in the United States.” They celebrated Jefferson’s zealous advocacy for religious liberty and chastised those who had criticized him “as an enemy of religion[,] Law & good order because he will not, dares not assume the prerogative of Jehovah and make Laws to govern the Kingdom of Christ.”

 

In a carefully crafted reply, Jefferson endorsed the persecuted Baptists’ aspirations for religious liberty:

 

Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & 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 & State.[3]

 

 

Jefferson’s Understanding of the “Wall”

 

Throughout his public career, including two terms as President, Jefferson pursued policies incompatible with the “high and impregnable” wall the modern Supreme Court has erroneously attributed to him. For example, he endorsed the use of federal funds to build churches and to support Christian missionaries working among the Indians. The absurd conclusion that countless courts and commentators would have us reach is that Jefferson routinely pursued policies that violated his own “wall of separation.”

 

Jefferson’s wall, as a matter of federalism, was erected between the national and state governments on matters pertaining to religion and not, more generally, between the church and all civil government. In other words, Jefferson placed the federal government on one side of his wall and state governments and churches on the other. …

 

 

The Wall That Black Built

 

The phrase “wall of separation” entered the lexicon of American constitutional law in 1879. In Reynolds v. United States, the U.S. Supreme Court opined that the Danbury letter “may be accepted almost as an authoritative declaration of the scope and effect of the [first] amendment thus secured.”[6] Although the Court reprinted the entire second paragraph of Jefferson’s letter containing the metaphorical phrase, Jefferson’s language is generally characterized as obiter dictum. [Blog Editor: The obiter dictum link is by this blog Editor]

 

Nearly seven decades later, in the landmark case of Everson v. Board of Education(1947), the Supreme Court rediscovered the metaphor: “In the words of Jefferson, the [First Amendment] clause against establishment of religion by law was intended to erect ‘a wall of separation between church and State’…. That wall,” the justices concluded in a sweeping separationist declaration, “must be kept high and impregnable.  …

 

Justice Hugo L. Black, who authored the Court’s ruling, likely encountered the metaphor in briefs filed in Everson. In an extended discussion of American history that highlighted Virginia’s disestablishment battles and supported the proposition that “separation of church and state is a fundamental American principle,” attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union quoted the single clause in the Danbury letter that contains the “wall of separation” image. …

 

The trope’s current fame and pervasive influence in popular, political, and legal discourse date from its rediscovery by the Everson Court. The Danbury letter was also cited frequently and favorably in the cases that followed Everson. In McCollum v. Board of Education (1948), the following term, and in subsequent cases, the Court essentially constitutionalized the Jeffersonian phrase, subtly and blithely substituting Jefferson’s figurative language for the literal text of the First Amendment.[9] In the last half of the 20th century, it became the defining motif for church-state jurisprudence.

 

The “high and impregnable” wall central to the past 50 years of church-state jurisprudence is not Jefferson’s wall; rather, it is the wall that Black–Justice Hugo Black–built in 1947 in Everson v. Board of Education.

 

 

Jefferson’s wall separated church and the federal government only. By incorporating the First Amendment non-establishment provision into the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, Black’s wall separates religion and civil government at all levels–federal, state, and local.

 

By extending its prohibitions to state and local jurisdictions, Black turned the First Amendment, as ratified in 1791, on its head. A barrier originally designed, as a matter of federalism, to separate the national and state governments, and thereby to preserve state jurisdiction in matters pertaining to religion, was transformed into an instrument of the federal judiciary to invalidate policies and programs of state and local authorities. As the normative constitutional rule applicable to all relationships between religion and the civil state, the wall that Black built has become the defining structure of a putatively secular polity.

 

… It would behoove you to READ this article in Entirety (The Mythical “Wall of Separation”: How a Misused Metaphor Changed Church–State Law, Policy, and Discourse; By Daniel L. Dreisbach; Heritage Foundation; 6/23/06)

 

Now I went through all this legal rigmarole to demonstrate how America’s Judiciary has become dominated by Leftist-minded activist or has fallen into the Living Constitution fallacy that essentially placed a wall of separation between America’s Christian Heritage and Lady Liberty’s secular paradigm. This forced divorce from the Left has eroded America’s moral principles as a nation in which the abomination of homosexuality has been normalized, adultery-fornication has become a cultural eye-wink, violence in schools is something to watch out for, pornography is distasteful but not aberrant, it becomes risky business to allow your children to walk home from school or play in their neighborhoods and on and on.

 

I started this post as an introduction to Robert Smith’s thoughts on homosexuality and the U.S. Constitution. Now I completely agree with Smith’s thoughts; however I think his tone is a bit harsh. The kind of harshness that might inspire violence by those disgusted by homosexuality and inspire violence by homosexuals offended by Christian morality.

 

For me the thing about defending Christian morality and criticizing a homosexual lifestyle is NOT to inspire violence. Rather my goal as to add a voice to the Good News of Jesus Christ delivering humanity from the evil hold of Satan’s kingdom leased to slew-foot by Adam’s betrayal. The Deliverance in Christ occurs when one believes that Jesus died on the Cross for Adam’s bequeathed sin-nature, that Jesus was in a tomb for three days and on the Third Day Jesus arose in a glorified but bodily form and currently sits at the Right Hand of the Father awaiting the right time to complete and seal the task of human beings be restored to God Almighty spirit, soul and body. Rejection in this faith in the Risen Christ leads to a very uncomfortable eternal living consequence separated from God’s Presence.

 

16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

 

18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” (John 3: 16-21 NKJV)

 

See Also:

 

Annotation 13 – Article III: JUDICIAL REVIEW; FindLaw.com.

 

What It Means to “Interpret” the US Constitution; Lawyers.com.

 

Judicial Activism: Everson v. Board of Ed. of Ewing Tp.; Heritage FoundationRule of Law.

 

SELECTED CONSTITUTIONAL LAW DECISIONS OF THE U.S. SUPREME COURT; LII – Cornell University Law School.

 

JRH 3/4/15

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OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS

 

By Robert Smith

Sent: 3/3/2015 2:05 AM

 

The President and several federal judges are violating our Constitutional rights.

 

The Bible, both Old and New Testaments, teaches that homosexuality is an abomination. It also teaches us that we must not associate with homosexuals and their associates or those who associate with associates of homosexuals.

 

The President has allowed openly homosexual individuals to enlist in the armed services, which forces those of us who believe as I do into close contact with homosexuals and to take orders from any higher ranking homosexuals appointed over us, thus violating our constitutional rights, our freedom of association.

 

Nowhere in the U.S. Constitution is there any mention of homosexuals or same sex marriage. Why? It was due to the fact that homosexuals and homosexuality was not tolerated then, nor were any homosexuals of the time flaunting their predilection for such perverse behavior, and as such, there was not any problem or controversy over homosexuals in that era of our history.

 

It is now to be seen precisely how our Supreme Court views my Constitutional rights and the rights of those who believe as I do.

 

The Constitution of the USA was written to protect our God given rights mentioned in the Declaration of Independence.

 

Read these verses of The Bible and it will show why our forefathers saw no need to mention homosexuality in The Constitution of The USA.

 

Leviticus 18:22; 20:13

 

Chapter 18

 

22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.

 

Chapter 20

13 If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them. (NKJV)

 

1 Corinthians 6:9-11

 

9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals,[a] nor sodomites, 10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God. (NKJV)

 

Romans 1:26-29; 13:8-10

 

Chapter 1

 

26 For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. 27 Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

 

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality,[a] wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers,

 

Chapter 13

 

8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,”[a] “You shall not covet,”[b] and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”[c] 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. (NKJV)

 

1 Timothy 1:10-11

 

10 for fornicators, for sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God which was committed to my trust. (NKJV)

 

Mark 10:6-9

 

6 But from the beginning of the creation, God ‘made them male and female.’[a]7 ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, 8 and the two shall become one flesh’; [b] so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9 Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.” (NKJV)

 

What does God give to homosexuals in Leviticus? DEATH and no chance for salvation.

 

In the New Testament if they ask Jesus to be forgiven and show they have truly repented and give up their evil life styles they then can be saved.

 

This is the reason they are not mentioned in the constitution.

___________________________

Religion and the Constitution

John R. Houk

© March 4, 2015

_______________________

OUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS

© Robert Smith

 

Edited by John R. Houk

Scripture references by Robert Smith and the Scripture quotes added by the Editor.

 

Independence Day [Message]


T Jefferson statue next to Decl of Independence

I subscribe to the online periodical The Patriot Post. It’s free and so far totally independent of advertisements and totally dependent on the gracious support of free will donations. Thus before I go further I highly encourage you to send some money to keep the fount of Patriotism operating as a source of Conservative Liberty and a promoter of the ideals of America’s Founding Fathers.

 

Since I am on The Patriot Post email list every year around Independence Day I get an email that links to an Independence Day message. I am fairly certain that oft times it is the same message because it is so well written and is quite timelessly relevant. I may have even cross posted it more than once. Guess what, I am doing it again – today.

 

JRH 7/4/14

Please Support NCCR

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Independence Day

The Patriot Post

 

“God who gave us life gave us Liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God? Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.” –Thomas Jefferson (1774)

 

Amid all the contemporary political and cultural contests, too many conservatives fail to make the case for overarching eternal truths — whether in debate with adversaries across the aisles of Congress, or with neighbors across Main Street.

 

Lost in the din is the foundational endowment of Essential Liberty, and any debate that does not begin with this eternal truth will end with temporary deceits.

 

The most oft-cited words from our Declaration of Independence are these: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

 

The eternal assertion that Liberty for all people is “endowed by their Creator” and is thus “unalienable” should require no defense, because “we hold these truths to be self-evident,” and because the rights of man are irrevocable from the “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.”

 

But the root of all debate between Liberty and tyranny — or, in political parlance, between Right and left — is the contest to assert who endows Liberty — God or man.

 

Contemporary Leftist protagonists seek to replace Rule of Law with the rule of men. This is because the former is predicated on the principle that Liberty is “endowed by our Creator,” while the latter asserts that government is the giver of Liberty.

 

The history of man, since its first record, has repeatedly and tragically documented that when the people settle for the assertion that government is the source of their rights, tyranny is the inevitable result. And tyrants always attempt to undermine Liberty by driving a wedge between it and its foundational endowment by our Creator.

 

For generations, American liberals have driven that wedge by asserting that our Constitution provides a “wall of separation” between church and state. But does it?

 

 

The short answer is “yes,” but it is most certainly not the faux wall constructed by judicial activists, who have grossly adulterated the plain language of our First Amendment especially during the last 50 years.

 

Contrary to what many liberals would have us believe, the words “wall of separation between church and state” do not appear in our Constitution — nor is this notion even implied. Thomas Jefferson penned those words in an obscure 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptist Association in response to concerns about Connecticut’s establishment of Congregationalism as their state church. Jefferson assuaged their concerns, telling the Baptists that the First Amendment prohibited the national government from establishing a “national church,” but he concluded rightly that the Constitution prohibited the national government from interfering with the matters of state governments — a “wall of separation,” if you will, between federal and state governments.

 

The “wall of separation” argument is thus a phony one. Indeed, it is a blueprint for tyranny.

 

We are created, from the beginning, in the Image of God, and that image is the essence of Liberty, the well of all rights for all people for all time.

 

Our enlightened Founders, in their revolutionary opposition to tyranny, looked far beyond kings and parliaments to the enduring source of the rights of man, and they enumerated in our Declaration of Independence that we are, indeed, created in God’s Image for His purpose, and that no man could strip that endowment from the soul of another. Thus, we have the equal capacity to be free, personal, rational, creative and moral beings, and we are entitled to be so through His endowment.

 

These rights and freedoms were further enshrined in our Constitution.

 

In 1776, John Hancock wrote of Jacob Duché, the first Chaplain appointed by the Continental Congress, “Congress … from a consideration of your … zealous attachment to the rights of America, appoint(s) you their Chaplain.” Duché, Pastor of Philadelphia’s Christ Church, captured the spirit of the American Revolution, saying, “Civil liberty is as much the gift of God in Christ Jesus … as our spiritual freedom… ‘Standing fast’ in that liberty, wherewith Christ, as the great providential Governor of the world, hath made us free.”

 

It is in that spirit that we at The Patriot Post adopted our motto, Veritas vos Liberabit — “The Truth Will Set You Free” (John 8:32). That is the essence of the assertion that we are “endowed by our Creator” with life and Liberty.

 

Ignorance of the true and eternal source of the rights of man is fertile ground for the Left’s assertion that government endows such rights. It is also perilous ground, soaked with the blood of generations of American Patriots. As Jefferson wrote, “The tree of Liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.”

 

Indeed, the “Cycle of Democracy” demands this tonic. And despite the pervasive assault on Liberty by the current legions of Leftist NeoComs, to paraphrase the great Prussian military historian, theorist and tactician Carl von Clausewitz, “the best defense is a good offense.”

 

Our Founders closed their Declaration with this pledge to each other, and all who would follow: “With a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.”

 

In his 1800 letter to fellow Declaration signer Benjamin Rush, Thomas Jefferson wrote, “I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”

 

Like millions of our generation’s American Patriots, I have sworn likewise. We must never forsake our Sacred Honor.

 

No matter what setbacks we face, Liberty is an eternal endowment. Thus, we must hold the lines on defense, and regroup for relentless attack on offense.

 

Never lose faith, fellow Patriots!

 

In honor of this anniversary of our Declaration of Independence, contemplate these wise words of our Founders, and please consider supporting The Patriot Post’s mission in defense of Liberty.

 

Signing Decl. of Independence

 

“While we are zealously performing the duties of good Citizens and soldiers we certainly ought not to be inattentive to the higher duties of Religion. To the distinguished Character of Patriot, it should be our highest Glory to add the more distinguished Character of Christian.” –George Washington

 

“The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.” –John Adams

 

“May every citizen … have a proper sense of the Deity upon his mind and an impression of the declaration recorded in the Bible, ‘Him that honoreth Me I will honor, but he that despiseth Me shall be lightly esteemed.'” –Samuel Adams

 

“This will be the best security for maintaining our liberties. A nation of well-informed men who have been taught to know and prize the rights which God has given them cannot be enslaved. It is in the religion of ignorance that tyranny begins.” –Benjamin Franklin

 

“The belief in a God All Powerful wise and good, is so essential to the moral order of the world and to the happiness of man, that arguments which enforce it cannot be drawn from too many sources nor adapted with too much solicitude to the different characters and capacities impressed with it.” –James Madison

 

“The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for among parchments and musty records. They are written, as with a sunbeam, in the whole volume of human nature, by the Hand of Divinity itself, and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power.” –Alexander Hamilton

 

“But where says some is the king of America? I’ll tell you Friend, he reigns above, and doth not make havoc of mankind like the Royal Brute of Britain. … [L]et it be brought forth placed on the divine law, the word of God; let a crown be placed thereon, by which the world may know, that so far as we approve of monarchy, that in America THE LAW IS king. For as in absolute governments the king is law, so in free countries the law ought to be king; and there ought to be no other. But lest any ill use should afterwards arise, let the crown at the conclusion of the ceremony be demolished, and scattered among the people whose right it is.” –Thomas Paine in Common Sense

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Disputing Separation Church/State Part 7


No Nation Survives without Law

John R. Houk

© April 5, 2014

 

Dougindeap left a comment on the post “The Truth about Separation of Church and State” at NCCR which is a cross post of an Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) brochure that provides reasons for the concept of Separation of Church and State as SCOTUS has set in stone today is and was not a correct interpretation of the U.S. Constitution.

 

It is my habit to usually post my perspective on a comment then place the comment below my thoughts. Since Dougindeap divided his comment into eight parts to refute the ADF points. So as I initially began to respond to Dougindeap’s original comment which resulted in various parts with the title “Disputing Separation Church/State” (which as of this writing is up to six parts). You can read an edited version of that comment at the end of my thoughts at SlantRight 2.0 or the NCCR blog. You can read Dougindeap’s unedited comment version at NCCR HERE. I am bucking my typical course and take a valiant effort to briefly take each of Dougindeap’s points to put in my two-cents. I say briefly because I can tell that the six parts of “Disputing Separation Church/State” could go on much longer than I desire to devote to the subject. I have to say something though because I disagree with Dougindeap as much as he disagrees with me. Sadly the slant of the reader’s politics will line the reader with Doug or myself.

 

So here we go.

 

dougindeap commented on The Truth about Separation of Church and State

April 2, 2014 at 8:12 PM

 

[Blog Editor: Dougindeap uses the abbreviation “ALF” when I suspect he was thinking Alliance Defending Freedom which would “ADF”. I mention this for clarity’s sake because we all post comments hurriedly in which typos or missing words occur and not as a criticism of Dougindeap.]

 

Dougindeap:

 

You have succeeded in gathering quite a collection of arguments about separation of church and state, nearly all of which I’ve seen and seen debunked many times. I won’t attempt to touch on every one of the many points, but will take the ALF items one by one.

 

1. While Jefferson’s first use of the term “separation of church and state” may have been in his letter to the Danbury Baptists, he hardly was the first to use the term.

 

Certainly Jefferson’s letter had nothing to say about limiting public religious expression. ALF contends against a strawman. No one contends that Jefferson said any such thing.

 

It is important to distinguish between “individual” and “government” speech about religion. The constitutional principle of separation of church and state does not purge religion from the public square–far from it. Indeed, the First Amendment’s “free exercise” clause assures that each individual is free to exercise and express his or her religious views–publicly as well as privately. The Amendment constrains only the government not to promote or otherwise take steps toward establishment of religion. As government can only act through the individuals comprising its ranks, when those individuals are performing their official duties (e.g., public school teachers instructing students in class), they effectively are the government and thus should conduct themselves in accordance with the First Amendment’s constraints on government. When acting in their individual capacities, they are free to exercise their religions as they please. (Students also are free to exercise and express their religious views–in a time, manner, and place that does not interfere with school programs and activities.) If their right to free exercise of religion extended even to their discharge of their official responsibilities, however, the First Amendment constraints on government establishment of religion would be eviscerated. While figuring out whether someone is speaking for the government in any particular circumstance may sometimes be difficult, making the distinction is critical.

 

JRH:

 

I believe Dougindeap has correctly expressed the meaning of the First Amendment until he gets to the part I took the liberty to highlight with bold print.

 

When Doug says the government can only act through the individuals comprising its ranks, he is correct to the extent those individuals are under the direct mandate of the government. The problem is the Left Wing assumption that all instruments of the government are representative of the Federal government. THIS WAS NOT THE ORIGINAL INTENT of the First Amendment.

 

The Bill of Rights which are actually the first ten Amendments of the U.S. Constitution provides an intent that must apply to the First Amendment as enumerated in the Tenth Amendment:

 

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

 

Just as Doug points out the First Amendment prevents the U.S. Congress to establish a State Church or to make any laws that prohibits the free exercise of religion. The Tenth Amendment brings specificity in that the State government or “the people” (implying local government such as Counties or cities) can define how individuals working as instruments of government are defined on the State and Local level. Hence the Federal government did not end Established Churches on the State level. The States individually disestablished State Churches as it became obvious the State Established Churches were slipping into the minority among Christian denominations in the various States. Ironically Massachusetts one of the most Liberal States in the American Union today was the last State to disestablish their State Church in the 1833. States’ Rights ended the Established Church in the USA and not the enforcement of the Federal government. In the same manner of Original Intent each State has the power of the law to limit or encourage government instruments such as employees from sharing their individual faith.

 

Dougindeap:

 

2. Justice Hugo Black was not the first to “insert” separation of church and state into American jurisprudence. Not by a long shot. A unanimous U.S. Supreme Court first used that term in 1878 in Reynolds v. United States, where it quoted Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists while interpreting the First Amendment.

 

JRH:

 

In Reynolds v. United States Dougindeap fails to mention the reason for the unanimity of SCOTUS in the 1878 religious Liberty case before them. George Reynolds a citizen of the then Territory of Utah was a Mormon that married more than one wife. Reynolds was convicted of bigamy. Reynolds demanded his First Amendment rights of Religious Liberty. The 1878 SCOTUS officially was more concerned about social norms than Religious Freedom. In Christian America in 1878 bigamy was not only illegal it was also a heinous sin. The reality of the 1878 SCOTUS decision was upholding traditional Christian values over the cult of Mormonism (Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints). Mormons then and now believe in the supremacy of the Book of Mormon and certain so-called Mormon prophetic pronouncements (Book of Mormon; Doctrine and Covenants and Pearl of Great Price) over the traditional Christian values of the Holy Bible. SCOTUS upheld the conviction of George Reynolds in 1878 unanimously. I have no doubts Mormons consider themselves Christians however their theology is so divergent from the orthodox practices of Christianity an intelligent evaluation even today would come to the conclusion Mormonism at best is its own religion and at worst a cult spin-off Christianity. It should be noted the powers that be in Mormonism had the remarkable revelation that marriage is between one man and one woman in order for the Utah Territory could become the sovereign State of Utah in 1890.

 

As to the 1878 SCOTUS unanimous opinion referencing the Jefferson to Danbury Baptists letter WallBuilders provides the actual intent of that Court opinion:

 

Earlier courts long understood Jefferson’s intent. In fact, when Jefferson’s letter was invoked by the Supreme Court (only twice prior to the 1947Everson case – the Reynolds v. United States case in 1878), unlike today’s Courts which publish only his eight-word separation phrase, that earlier Court published Jefferson’s entire letter and then concluded:

 

Coming as this does from an acknowledged leader of the advocates of the measure, it [Jefferson’s letter] may be accepted almost as an authoritative declaration of the scope and effect of the Amendment thus secured. Congress was deprived of all legislative power over mere [religious] opinion, but was left free to reach actions which were in violation of social duties or subversive of good order. (emphasis added)[12]

 

That Court then succinctly summarized Jefferson’s intent for “separation of church and state”:

 

[T]he rightful purposes of civil government are for its officers to interfere when principles break out into overt acts against peace and good order. In th[is] . . . is found the true distinction between what properly belongs to the church and what to the State. [13]

 

With this even the Baptists had agreed; for while wanting to see the government prohibited from interfering with or limiting religious activities, they also had declared it a legitimate function of government “to punish the man who works ill to his neighbor.”

 

That Court, therefore, and others (for example, Commonwealth v. Nesbit and Lindenmuller v. The People), identified actions into which – if perpetrated in the name of religion – the government did have legitimate reason to intrude. Those activities included human sacrifice, polygamy, bigamy, concubinage, incest, infanticide, parricide, advocation and promotion of immorality, etc. (Excerpted from – The Separation of Church and State; By David Barton; WallBuilders.com; January 2001)

 

Dougindeap:

 

3. First, ALF tries to pass off the Supreme Court’s decision in Everson v. Board of Education as simply a misreading of Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists–as if that were the only basis of the Court’s decision. Instructive as that letter is, it played but a small part in the Court’s decision. Rather, the Court discussed the historical context in which the Constitution and First Amendment were drafted, noting the expressed understanding of Madison perhaps even more than Jefferson, and only after concluding its analysis and stating its conclusion did the Court refer–once–to Jefferson’s letter, largely to borrow his famous metaphor as a clever label or summary of its conclusion. The notion, often heard, that the Court rested its decision solely or largely on that letter is a red herring.

 

Second, it is ALF that has confused its history. Contrary to its assertion, Justice Black did not write that the Danbury letter may be accepted “almost as an authoritative declaration of the scope and effect” of the First Amendment.” Rather Chief Justice Waite wrote that in Reynolds v. United States. Black, moreover, did not repeat that statement in Everson.

 

Finally, the further notion, suggested by ALF and advanced by some, that the Supreme Court’s recognition of the constitutional separation of church and state in Everson is all Justice Black’s doing is laughable. It bears noting that all nine justices in the Everson case read the Constitution to call for separation of church and state, and indeed all of the parties and all of the amici curiae (including the National Council of Catholic Men and National Council of Catholic Women) did as well; no one disputed the principle, they differed only in how it should be applied in the circumstances of the case.

 

JRH:

 

Actually Hugo Black equally emphasized Jefferson and Madison together. Doug fails to mention that Black’s Majority Opinion included both Jefferson and Madison’s efforts on a State level in Virginia to disestablish any Church to receive tax support because such taxation would be discriminatory toward non-established Christian denominations. Hence Jefferson and Madison were not arguing the removal of recognized Christian Morality but rather the removal of taxpayers’ paying the salary of a State established Clergy. AND so yes, Hugo Black misappropriated the work of Jefferson and Madison use of a States’ Rights issue to apply to Federal authority. Hugo Black attempts to solidify the Church/State separation by adopting Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists. How did Black connect a States’ Rights issue to Federal authority? Then Black used the presumption that the Fourteenth Amendment which officially ended Slavery in all the States by Federal rule of law, then by extension Black presumed the Fourteenth Amendment nullified the Tenth Amendment which in turn pertained to individual State sovereignty bowing to the will of the Judicial and Executive branches of government. This interpretation had the effect to keep the influence of Christianity outside the scope of State level and local level government parameters in the rule of law.

 

Dougindeap:

 

4. That the words “separation of church and state” do not appear in the text of the Constitution assumes much importance, it seems, to some who once mistakenly supposed they were there and, upon learning of their error, fancy they’ve solved a Constitutional mystery. To those familiar with the Constitution, the absence of the metaphorical phrase commonly used to name one of its principles is no more consequential than the absence of other phrases (e.g., Bill of Rights, separation of powers, checks and balances, fair trial, religious liberty) used to describe other undoubted Constitutional principles.

 

Contrary to ALF’s supposition, separation of church and state rests on much more than just the First Amendment. It is a bedrock principle of our Constitution, much like the principles of separation of powers and checks and balances. In the Constitution, the founders did not simply say in so many words that there should be separation of powers and checks and balances; rather, they actually separated the powers of government among three branches and established checks and balances. Similarly, they did not merely say there should be separation of church and state; rather, they actually separated them by (1) establishing a secular government on the power of “We the people” (not a deity), (2) according that government limited, enumerated powers, (3) saying nothing to connect that government to god(s) or religion, (4) saying nothing to give that government power over matters of god(s) or religion, and (5), indeed, saying nothing substantive about god(s) or religion at all except in a provision precluding any religious test for public office. Given the norms of the day (by which governments generally were grounded in some appeal to god(s)), the founders’ avoidance of any expression in the Constitution suggesting that the government is somehow based on any religious belief was quite a remarkable and plainly intentional choice. They later buttressed this separation of government and religion with the First Amendment, which affirmatively constrains the government from undertaking to establish religion or prohibit individuals from freely exercising their religions.

 

JRH:

 

Doug mistakenly equates the lack of the words “Wall of Separation of Church and State” in the Constitute is the same as other civics terms not being the Constitution such as “Bill of Rights, separation of powers (i.e. in branches of government), checks and balances, fair trial, religious liberty” and so on. The reason Doug is mistaken because all those other terms are specifically spelled out in the Constitution BUT the term “Wall of Separation of Church and State” is not spelled out AT ALL The First Amendment ONLY spells out that Congress cannot make a law to Establish a State Church and that Congress cannot prohibit the free exercise of religion.

 

Dougindeap:

 

5. While the First Amendment undoubtedly was intended to preclude the government from establishing a national religion as you note, that was hardly the limit of its intended scope. The first Congress debated and rejected just such a narrow provision (“no religion shall be established by law, nor shall the equal rights of conscience be infringed”) and ultimately chose the more broadly phrased prohibition now found in the Amendment. During his presidency, Madison vetoed two bills, neither of which would form a national religion or compel observance of any religion, on the ground that they were contrary to the establishment clause. While some in Congress expressed surprise that the Constitution prohibited Congress from incorporating a church in the town of Alexandria in the District of Columbia or granting land to a church in the Mississippi Territory, Congress upheld both vetoes. Separation of church and state is hardly a new invention of modern courts. In keeping with the Amendment’s terms and legislative history and other evidence, the courts have wisely interpreted it to restrict the government from taking steps that could establish religion de facto as well as de jure. Were the Amendment interpreted merely to preclude government from enacting a statute formally establishing a state church, the intent of the Amendment could easily be circumvented by government doing all sorts of things to promote this or that religion–stopping just short of cutting a ribbon to open its new church.

 

JRH:

 

Dougindeap quotes James Madison’s first writing of a proposed First Amendment: “no religion shall be established by law, nor shall the equal rights of conscience be infringed”. I suspect Doug is implying Madison’s influence spoke for all the Congressmen in constructing religious freedom as imputed by Federal government authority en toto as opposed to States’ Rights. That is DEFINITELY not the case because of House deliberation the First Amendment’s form ratified as law is what was sent to the States for ratification. Hence States’ Rights coupled with the Tenth Amendment became the actual Original Intent of the First Amendment which included the individual States upholding the primacy of the values of the Christian religion by which all Denominations upheld regardless of varying theological dogma.

 

Since the Declaration of Independence led to the Articles of Confederation which were then superseded by the U.S. Constitution in 1789 shows that the Founding Fathers bowed to the will of ‘We the People’ in the promotion of the very least the promotion of Christianity as what will maintain the general welfare of the people of the new USA.

 

Here’s an abbreviated list of the Continental Congress pushing Christian Morals and Values for the General Welfare (1774 – 1789):

 

1. Congress’ First Act: A Resolution to Pray – September 6, 1774

 

2. Congress Ordered Purchase and Printing of Bibles – September 11, 1777

 

3. Congress Expressly Promoted Religion – October 12, 1778:

 

Whereas true religion and good morals are the only solid foundations of public liberty and happiness: Resolved, That it be, and it is hereby earnestly recommended to the several States to take the most effectual measures for the encouragement thereof.

 

4. The Declaration of Independence – formally adopted it on July 4, 1776, and signed it August 2, 1776. The Declaration directly appeals to God at least four times

 

5. Congress Appointed Days Of Prayer, Thanksgiving, and Repentance – In the approximately fifteen years of its existence, the Continental Congress approved at least fifteen proclamations calling on the states to appoint days of special worship or honor to God. Dates enumerated from 1777 through 1787.

 

The above lists remarkable does not contain the Northwest Ordinance enacted by the Continental Congress under the Articles of Confederation July 13, 1787. The legislation has 14 Sections and the Fourteenth Section has Six Articles. The purpose for the Northwest Ordinance was to establish a Central government rule of law for expansion westward from the Original 13 States and a method of admitting new sovereign States to the United States of America (then under the Articles of Confederation). Christianity and Religious Freedom combined are expressly part of the designs of the Northwest Ordinance.

 

Sec. 13. And, for extending the fundamental principles of civil and religious liberty, which form the basis whereon these republics, their laws and constitutions are erected; to fix and establish those principles as the basis of all laws, constitutions, and governments, which forever hereafter shall be formed in the said territory: to provide also for the establishment of States, and permanent government therein, and for their admission to a share in the federal councils on an equal footing with the original States, at as early periods as may be consistent with the general interest: (Bold emphasis Blog Editor’s)

 

Sec. 14. It is hereby ordained and declared by the authority aforesaid, That the following articles shall be considered as articles of compact between the original States and the people and States in the said territory and forever remain unalterable, unless by common consent, to wit:

 

Art. 1. No person, demeaning himself in a peaceable and orderly manner, shall ever be molested on account of his mode of worship or religious sentiments, in the said territory.

 

Art. 3. Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged. …

 

The two bills James Madison vetoed was done correctly. The bills’ goals were to Establish the Episcopalian Church in the city of Alexandria within the District of Columbia and provide public funds to buy land for a Church in the Territory of Mississippi. On a Federal basis the First Amendment specifically states that Congress can make no law establishing a Church. AGAIN this has nothing to do with the laws enumerated to the several States not in the U.S. Constitution (Tenth Amendment).

 

My above thoughts on the history of the Courts and Church Establishment already refute the Doug’s claim that Church/State Separation issues is “hardly a new invention of modern courts.”

 

Dougindeap:

 

6. Dreisbach’s fundamental error is his largely unspoken and unexamined presumption that the Constitution’s separation of church and state is merely a First Amendment textual matter. As noted above, however, it is rather a bedrock principle of our Constitution, resting on much more than the First Amendment.

 

JRH:

 

Already proved this line of thinking is in error by Dougindeap.

 

Dougindeap:

 

7. The Constitution, including particularly the First Amendment, embodies the simple, just idea that each of us should be free to exercise his or her religious views without expecting that the government will endorse or promote those views and without fearing that the government will endorse or promote the religious views of others. By keeping government and religion separate, the establishment clause serves to protect the freedom of all to exercise their religion. Reasonable people may differ, of course, on how these principles should be applied in particular situations, but the principles are hardly to be doubted. Moreover, they are good, sound principles that should be nurtured and defended, not attacked. Efforts to undercut our secular government by somehow merging or infusing it with religion should be resisted by every patriot.

 

Wake Forest University has published a short, objective Q&A primer on the current law of separation of church and state–as applied by the courts rather than as caricatured in the blogosphere. I commend it to you. http://tiny.cc/6nnnx

 

JRH:

 

The only contention I can agree with Dougindeap is that the First Amendment prevents the Federal Congress from Establishing a State Church and that the Federal Congress cannot enact laws prohibiting the free exercise of religion. Everything else not forbidden by the U.S. Constitution is the purview of each State in the Union of the United States of America. The tiny url posted by Doug does not work or at least not in my Chrome or Internet Explorer browsers. When I Googled ‘Wake Forest Q&A primer on Separation of Church and State’ I discovered Dougindeap has been posting link since at least 2010. I can find no such document online from Wake Forest. Perhaps the closest thing I can find is a PDF document entitled, “Religious Expression in American Public Life: A Joint Statement of Current Law”. I found two links for this document: One by Wake Forest and another posted on the Anti-Defamation League website but both are the same document. Both documents are dated January 2010. The document is a collective work by a bunch of people that are on opposite sides of the Church/State Separation issues. The document is anything but definitive. The closest section talking about the First Amendment and Church Establishment is Chapter Two of the roughly 32 page document with End Notes longer if you include acknowledgements by Wake Forest’s (at least then) Director of Wake Forest University Divinity School and the Center for Religion and Public Affairs. The Chapter Two title is “Is the First Amendment the only constitutional or legal provision that affects these issues?

 

Chapter Two clearly expresses the First Amendment is functional as a Federal law in which there is a large degree of discretion on the State level of law in which the First Amendment does not address.

 

In connection to this PDF document (Religious Expression in American Public Life: A Joint Statement of Current Law), the “diverse” committee that truly consisted of representation of both sides of the political spectrum on Church/State issues was led by Melissa Rogers as the Director of Wake Forest University Divinity School’s Center for Religion and Public Affairs during the PDF document’s 2010 publication. Melissa Rogers is hardly neutral a person that looks equally on both sides of the coin on Church/State issues. Rogers is a downright and overt proponent of the revisionist Left Wingers choosing to exclude the merits of Original Intent of the Constitution in relation to the opinions of the Founders on how Christianity effects the general welfare of a good society. Even the Founding Fathers in James Madison (See also HERE) and Thomas Jefferson that were closer to the secularist Enlightenment discrediting of orthodox theology of Christianity agreed that Christian Morals and Values promoted a good society.

 

Dougindeap:

 

8. While some, including myself, grow tired of the semantic wrangling over the phrase commonly used to describe or name one of the Constitution’s fundamental principles, that principle—by whatever name—remains central and essential to the Constitution and our way of life.

           

JRH:

 

Doug says he is getting weary of wrangling that Separation of Church and State is a fundamental principle of the Constitution. I myself am frustrated about Leftists trying so hard to prevent the historical nature of Christianity of being such a huge influence on the development of our nation. It is my belief that the Leftist efforts at historical revisionism is to transform America into a society that abandons Christianity as a Moral Foundation. Then replace Christianity with a Secular Humanist perspective as a foundation for societal morality. Such a humanist morality places the created on a pedestal above the Creator. No matter how lofty the ideals of man being inherently good, actual history shows that man is inherently evil. That inherent evil exists in human nature because God’s first created human being – Adam – betrayed God the Creator by agreeing with the serpent Satan and partook of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Why did Adam consume the fruit? Satan told Eve, who Adam did not rebuke, believed the serpent that the fruit would make her and Adam like God knowing the difference between good and evil. Adam’s act of disobedience of God voluntarily sold his nature to the dominion of Satan. Since Adam was made the perpetual steward of God’s created Earth. That meant the earth also came under Satan’s control. Adam’s disobedience led to the punishment of being separated from God which is spiritual death. Humanity and Earth became cursed to a Fallen nature explaining an inherent evil nature. The inherent evil nature of man will inevitably lead to unwholesome if not downright wicked choices in which selfish desires overrule the general welfare of humanity.

 

The good news for humanity God the Creator promised a way out for Adam choosing Satan’s lie as truth rather than God’s holy union.

 

14 So the Lord God said to the serpent:

 

“Because you have done this,
You are cursed more than all cattle,
And more than every beast of the field;
On your belly you shall go,
And you shall eat dust
All the days of your life.

15 And I will put enmity
Between you and the woman,
And between your seed and her Seed;
He shall bruise your head,
And you shall bruise His heel
.” (Bold Emphasis Blog Editor – Genesis 3: 14-15 NKJV
)

 

Verse 15 is God’s first Promise of a Redeemer to bring humanity back into right standing with God Almighty. Then and only then will humanity not need laws of a government to curb the inclination of a Fallen human nature. Secular Humanism is wrong, humanity is not essentially good.

 

JRH 4/5/14

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Disputing Separation Church/State Part 4


1st Adam - 2nd Adam in Jesus Christ. Hans Baldung Grien

1st Adam/2nd Adam – Jesus Christ

John R. Houk

© March 25, 2014

 

If you choose to read the preceding parts simply click the links:

 

o   Part One

 

o   Part Two

 

o   Part Three

 

… In the second place, the Court is right. In the Constitution, the founders did not simply say in so many words that there should be separation of powers and checks and balances; rather, they actually separated the powers of government among three branches and established checks and balances. Similarly, they did not merely say there should be separation of church and state; rather, they actually separated them by (1) establishing a secular government on the power of “We the people” (not a deity), (2) according that government limited, enumerated powers, (3) saying nothing to connect that government to god(s) or religion, (4) saying nothing to give that government power over matters of god(s) or religion, and (5), indeed, saying nothing substantive about god(s) or religion at all except in a provision precluding any religious test for public office. (Dougindeap from: The Commonality between Leftist Paradigms & Scientific Theories; SlantRight 2.0; 3/13/14)

 

Dougindeap is absolutely correct that the Founding Fathers separated the three branches of government as described in the U.S. Constitution: Executive, Legislative and Judicial. AND in separating those branches the Founders separated the powers thereof with checks and balances hoping to create a government in which the tyranny of despotism or the tyranny of democracy or judicial fiat could be avoided. The intention for the checks and balances was to give voting citizens the power to be a check and balance to the authority of the government vis-á-vis the Liberty of Civil and Individual Rights.

 

BUT Dougindeap presumes the enumeration of powers, checks and balances is also extended to the form of Church/State separate created by Judicial Fiat beginning with the Hugo Black majority opinion in 1947 Everson v. Board of Education:

 

The First Amendment has erected a wall between church and state. The wall must be kept high and impregnable. We could not approve the slightest breach.” (See Part 3)

 

I went over the reasons that this judicial fiat was and is bogus in Part Three. Let’s suffice it to say here that Dougindeap’s assertion that Hugo Black’s 1947 majority opinion was not in the mind of the Founders as a rule of law prescribed as part of powers of government in a Church/State separated with checks and balances way back in 1789. Dougindeap lists five points he believes the Founding Fathers established within the Constitution separating Church and State with checks and balances in the same way the three branches of government were enumerated.

 

1. Establishing a secular government on the power of “We the people” (not a deity).

 

I guess we need to examine briefly the Constitution’s Preamble from Part One:

 

We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. (Bold emphasis mine)

 

In Part One I explained the reason I bold printed a portion of the Preamble:

 

The Free Dictionary listing for “general welfare” goes from the broad meaning found in the Preamble to a specific context carried on from Article 1 Section 8. …

 

THUS the Original Intent of the Founding Fathers understanding of the general welfare included morality. Since the Founding Fathers’ milieu was the 1760s through and a bit beyond the 1790s their concept of morality was not based on a Secular Humanism devoid of God and God the Creator’s morality established in the Bible. (Excerpted from “Disputing Separation Church/State Part 1”)

 

The Original Intent ergo, the Founding Fathers were empowering “We the people” in a secular order BUT under the moral guidance of the Christian God. That is strike one for Dougindeap’s point one.

 

The Signers of the U.S. Constitution that was then sent to the Thirteen Independent States under the Articles of Confederation establishes the importance the Founding Fathers tipped their hat to the Judeo-Christian God of the Holy Bible:

 

Done in convention by the unanimous consent of the states present the seventeenth day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven and of the independence of the United States of America the twelfth.

 

In witness whereof We have hereunto subscribed our Names,

 

… (Followed by the signatures of the representative of the thirteen original states formally loosely aligned under the Articles of ConfederationBold emphasis mine) [Excerpted from the last paragraphs of “Disputing Separation Church/State Part 1”]

 

That is strike two for Dougindeap.

 

Hugo Black the writer of the majority of the opinion in Everson v. Board of Education stepped beyond the veil by using Thomas Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptist Association offering reassurance to their concerns of being a minority Protestant Denomination in Connecticut in which Congregationalism was the Established Church of the State:

 

The Danbury Baptist Association committee wrote to the President stating that, “Religion is at all times and places a Matter between God and Individuals — that no man ought to suffer in Name, person or affects on account of his religious Opinions.” (6) The Danbury Baptists believed that religion was an unalienable right and they hoped that Jefferson would raise the consciousness of the people to recognize religious freedom as unalienable. However, the Danbury Baptists acknowledged that the President of the United States was not a “national Legislator” and they also understood that the “national government cannot destroy the Laws of each State.” (7) In other words, they recognized Jefferson’s limited influence as the federal executive on the individual states. (The Myth Behind “Separation of Church and State”; By Mathew D. Staver; Liberty Counsel; © 2000)

 

Here is President Thomas Jefferson’s reassurance letter to the Danbury Baptist Association:

 

Messrs. Nehemiah Dodge, Ephraim Robbins, and Stephen s. Nelson
A Committee of the Danbury Baptist Association, in the State of Connecticut.

 

Washington, January 1, 1802

 

Gentlemen,–The affectionate sentiment of esteem and approbation which you are so good as to express towards me, on behalf of the Danbury Baptist Association, give me the highest satisfaction. My duties dictate a faithful and zealous pursuit of the interests of my constituents, and in proportion as they are persuaded of my fidelity to those duties, the discharge of them becomes more and more pleasing.

 

Believing with you 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 would “make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” thus building a wall of separation between Church and State. Adhering to this expression of the supreme will of the nation in behalf of the rights of conscience, I shall see with sincere satisfaction the progress of those sentiments which tend to restore to man all his natural rights, convinced he has no natural right in opposition to his social duties.

 

I reciprocate your kind prayers for the protection and blessing of the common Father and Creator of man, and tender you for yourselves and your religious association, assurances of my high respect and esteem.

 

Th Jefferson


Jan. 1. 1802 (Thomas Jefferson, The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, Albert E. Bergh, ed. (Washington, D. C.: The Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association of the United States, 1904), Vol. XVI, pp. 281-282. On Wall Builders – “
Letters Between the Danbury Baptists and Thomas Jefferson”)

 

Hugo Black warped the intent of the Jefferson Letter pertaining to the Federal Government v. States’ Rights even though the Tenth Amendment specifically forbade the Federal Government to interfere in State legislation that did not usurp the prerogative of the U.S. Constitution:

 

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people. (Tenth Amendment)

 

Hugo Black excluded the Tenth Amendment and ignored the Founding Document the Declaration of Independence that was penned by Thomas Jefferson under the Continental Congress Committee drafting said declaration:

 

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

 

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

 

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.

 

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

 

… (Bold Emphasis Mine – The Declaration of Independence: A Transcription; The Charters of Freedom; Archives.gov)

 

The Declaration drafters of which Thomas Jefferson was an integral part of, indeed espoused the ideology that the enfranchised people experiencing unjust tyranny from a despot or despotic government have the right to change that government. BUT who does the Committee empowered to draft a Declaration of Independence claim gives the enfranchised people the right to throw off the bonds of tyranny? The empowerment comes from God Almighty:

 

“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 …”

 

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

 

Strike three Dougindeap. Just as specified by the First Amendment that proclaims government under the law-making power of Congress cannot get involved in religion (i.e. Christianity) but mankind under the moral guidance of the Creator must influence government to keep government from devolving into a tyranny that permits society to use the guidance of human individuals to establish that which moral and good. Why? Because humanity is inherently a fallen nature that gravitates towards ungodly principles when the guiding principles of God are excluded.

 

12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned— 13 (For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law. 14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned according to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come. 15 But the free gift is not like the offense. For if by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many. 16 And the gift is not like that which came through the one who sinned. For the judgment which came from one offense resulted in condemnation, but the free gift which came from many offenses resulted in justification. 17 For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)

 

18 Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

 

20 Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more, 21 so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Romans 5: 12 – 21 NKJV)

 

End of Part Four

 

JRH 3/25/14

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Disputing Separation Church/State Part 3


Need SCOTUS Support Constitution

 

John R. Houk

© March 20, 2014

 

In Parts One and Two I examined Dougindeap’s first sentence in his assertion that the separation of Church/State is as embedded in the Constitution as is the paradigm of checks and balances. You can rehash those two parts on the reasons I do not agree with Dougindeap’s assertion.

 

For the sake of continuity here is Dougindeap’s first sentence followed by the second sentence in bold print:

 

Separation of church and state is a bedrock principle of our Constitution, much like the principles of separation of powers and checks and balances. In the first place, the Supreme Court has thoughtfully, authoritatively, and repeatedly decided as much; it is long since established law. (You can read Dougindeap’s full comment below the post “The Commonality between Leftist Paradigms & Scientific Theories”)

 

Really? Has the Supreme Court actually thoughtfully, authoritatively and repeatedly established as law that Separation of Church/State is a bedrock principle in the U.S. Constitution?

 

Evidently Dougindeap believes 1947 as a period of time to represent “thoughtfully, authoritatively and repeatedly”. The year 1947 is when Justice Hugo Black wrote the majority opinion in Everson v. Board of Education in which SCOTUS utilized the phrase,

 

The First Amendment has erected a wall between church and state. The wall must be kept high and impregnable. We could not approve the slightest breach.” (Quote found at “The Truth about Separation of Church and State;” AllianceDefendingFreedom.org)

 

Let’s do some simple math. The Continental Congress published the Declaration of Independence in 1776. The U.S. Constitution became implemented as the rule of law in 1789. My calculator tells me there is a 158 years between 1947 and 1789. That span of years is hardly SCOTUS establishing “thoughtfully, authoritatively and repeatedly” separation of Church/State as a “bedrock principle of our Constitution”.

 

You have to wonder if the issue of Separation of Church/State arose on the SCOTUS docket prior to 1947 in which Justice Hugo Black used as stare decisis (Latin for to stand by things decided) to build his majority opinion.

 

I am fairly certain that Justice Hugo Black ignored an immense amount of Judicial decisions and the words of Justices written or spoken outside the scope SCOTUS. AND YET Justice Black based the opinion decision Everson v. Board of Education in 1947 on a non-judicial letter from Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Church that used the phraseology of the wall of separation between Church and State. The Danbury Baptist Church expressed concern that Connecticut was about to establish the Congregational Church as a State supported Church which would infer that even non-Congregationalists would be involved in paying some form of tax to a Denomination outside the scope of Baptist theology. President Jefferson sent out a letter in 1802 responding to the Danbury letter expressing their concerns. The Danbury Baptists were aware that as President Jefferson did not have the authority to arbitrarily change State Law but enlisted his help to the Office of POTUS to encourage various States that had an Established Church to steer away from such a law to concur with Federal Law. This is the time that Jefferson wrote the wall of separation between Church/State letter.

 

President Jefferson was not involved in the committee that drafted the Constitution and neither was he in the position of issuing a Judicial Decision. AND YET Justice Hugo Black in 1947 incorporated the Jefferson letter as an authority to change a 158 years of Constitutional jurisprudence.

 

Below is a long list of quotes that should have borne more weight judicially than the Jefferson opinion that Leftists have warped today to keep Christianity out of America’s public legal and electoral sphere.

 

JRH 3/20/14 (Some these quotes I will endeavor to provide source links not utilized by the web page author)

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Untitled Restore-Christian-America.org on USA as a Christian Nation

 

Justice Thomas McKean 
Served as governor in Delaware and Pennsylvania. During his tenure as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, he offered these words of advice to John Roberts — a man sentenced to death.

 

Respublica vs. John Roberts

“You will probably have but a short time to live. Before you launch into eternity it behooves you most seriously to reflect upon your past conduct; to repent of your evil deeds; to be incessant in prayers to the great and merciful God to forgive your manifold transgressions and sins; to rely upon the merit and passion of a dear Redeemer, and thereby to avoid those regions of sorrow….May you, reflecting upon these things, and pursuing the will of the great Father of light and life, be received into [the] company and society of angels and archangels and the spirits of just men made perfect; and may you be qualified to enter into the joys of Heavens — joys unspeakable and full of glory.”


John Jay, 1777 
The first Chief Justice of the United States

 

“Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty, as well as the privilege and the interest, of a Christian nation to select and prefer Christians for their rulers.”


James Wilson, 
a signer of the Constitution and an original Justice on the U.S. Supreme Court

 

“Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of that law which is divine….Far from being rivals or enemies, religion and law are twin sisters, friends, and mutual assistants. Indeed, these two sciences run into each other.”


Justice Samuel Chase 
Runkel v. Winemiller, 1799

 

“Religion is of general and public concern, and on its support depend, in great measure, the peace and good order of government, the safety and happiness of the people. 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 religious liberty.”


Justice Joseph Story

 

“The real object of the First Amendment was not to countenance [approve of], much less to advance Mohammedanism, or Judaism, or infidelity [secularism], by prostrating [overcoming] Christianity, but to exclude all rivalry among Christian sects [denominations]…”


Justice Joseph Story 
A Familiar Exposition of the Constitution of the United States 1840

 

“We are not to attribute this prohibition of the national religious establishment [in the First Amendment] to any indifference to religion in general, and especially to Christianity (which none could hold in more reverence than the framers of the Constitution)… at the time of the adoption of the Constitution, the general, if not the universal, sentiment in America was, that Christianity ought to receive encouragement from the State so far as was not incompatible with the private rights of conscience and the freedom of religious worship.

 

… Republics are created by the virtue, public spirit, and intelligence of the citizens. They fall, when the wise are banished from the public councils, because they dare to be honest, and the profligate [immoral] are rewarded, because they flatter the people, in order to betray them.”


Justice Joseph Story 
Vidal v. Girard’s Executors 1844

 

“Christianity… is not to be maliciously and openly reviled and blasphemed against, to the annoyance of believers or the injury of the public…”


Justice Joseph Story

 

“There is not a truth to be gathered from history more certain, or more momentous, than this: that civil liberty cannot long be separated from religious liberty without danger, and ultimately without destruction to both.

 

“Wherever religious liberty exists, it will, first or last, bring in and establish political liberty.”


Chief Justice John Marshall 
In a letter to Jasper Adams, May 9, 1833

 

“The American population is entirely Christian, and with us Christianity and Religion are identified. It would be strange indeed, if with such a people, our institutions did not presuppose Christianity, and did not often refer to it, and exhibit relations with it.”


Thomas Cooley 
In his General Principles of Constitutional Law 1890

 

“It was never intended by the Constitution that the government should be prohibited from recognizing religion, or that religious worship should never be provided for in cases where a proper recognition of Divine Providence in the working of government might seem to require it, and where it might be done without drawing an invidious distinction between religious beliefs, organizations, or sects. The Christian religion was always recognized in the administration of the common law of the land, the fundamental principles of that religion must continue to be recognized in the same cases and to the same extent as formerly.”


Judge Gallagher 
Baer v. Kolmorgen 
The Supreme Court of New York
1958

 

“Much has been written in recent years…to “a wall of separation between church and State.” …It has received so much attention that one would almost think at times that it is to be found somewhere in our Constitution.”


Justice Potter Stewart

[Dissenting Opinion: Engel v. Vitale (1962)]

 

“I think that the Court’s task, in this as in all areas of constitutional adjudication, is not responsibly aided by the uncritical invocation of metaphors like the “wall of separation,” a phrase nowhere to be found in the Constitution.”


Justice William Rehnquist 
Wallace v. Jafree 1985 [Dissenting Opinion]

 

“It is impossible to build sound consitutional doctrine upon a mistaken understanding of Constitutional history… The establishment clause had been expressly freighted with Jefferson’s misleading metaphor for nearly forty years… There is simply no historical foundation for the proposition that the framers intended to build a wall of separation [between church and state]… The recent court decisions are in no way based on either the language or intent of the framers.”


Justice William Rehnquist

[Ibid.]

 

“But the greatest injury of the “wall” notion is its mischievous diversion of judges from the actual intentions of the drafters of the Bill of Rights… The “wall of separation between church and State” is a metaphor based on bad history, a metaphor which has proved useless as a guide to judging. It should be frankly and explicitly abandoned.”


—U.S. Supreme Court, 1811— 
The People v. Ruggles 
Justice James Kent delivered the Court’s opinion:

 

“The defendant was indicted… in December, 1810, for that he did, on the 2nd day of September, 1810… wickedly, maliciously, and blasphemously, utter, and with a loud voice publish, in the presence of hearing of divers good and Christian people, of and concerning the Christian religion, and of and concerning Jesus Christ, the false, scandalous, malicious, wicked and blasphemous words following: “Jesus Christ is a bastard, and his mother must be a whore”, in contempt of the Christian religion… the defendant was tried and found guilty, and was sentenced by the court to be imprisoned for three months, and to pay a fine of $500.

 

Such words uttered with such a disposition were an offense at common law. In Taylor’s case the defendant was convicted upon information of speaking similar words, and the Court… said that Christianity was parcel of the law, and to cast contumelious reproaches upon it, tended to weaken the foundation of moral obligation, and the efficacy of oaths.

 

And in the case of Rex vs. Woolston’s, on a like conviction, the Court said… that whatever strikes at the root of Christianity tends manifestly to the dissolution of civil government… the authorities show that blasphemy against God and… profane ridicule of Christ or the Holy Scriptures (which are equally treated as blasphemy), are offenses punishable at common law, rather uttered by words or writings… because it tends to corrupt the morals of the people, and to destroy good order.

 

Such offenses have always been considered independent of any religious establishment or the rights of the Church. They are treated as affecting the essential interest of civil society…

 

We stand equally in need, now as formerly, of all the moral discipline, and of those principles of virtue, which help to bind society together.

 

The people of this State, in common with the people of this country, profess the general doctrines of Christianity, as the rule of their faith and practice; and to scandalize the author of these doctrines is not only… impious, but… is a gross violation of decency and good order.

 

Nothing could be more injurious to the tender morals of the young, then to declare such profanity lawful…

 

The free, equal, and undisturbed enjoyment of religious opinion, whatever it may be, and free and descent discussions on any religious subject, is granted and secured; but to revile… the religion professed by almost the whole community, is an abuse of that right…

 

We are a Christian people, and the morality of the country is deeply engrafted upon Christianity, and not upon the doctrines of worship of those impostors [other religions]…

 

[We are] people whose manners are refined and whose morals has been elevated and inspired with a more enlarged benevolence, by means of the Christian religion. Though the Constitution has discarded religious establishments, it does not forbid judicial cognizance of those offenses against religion and morality which have no reference to any such establishment…

 

This [constitutional] declaration (noble and magnanimous as it is, when duly understood) never meant to withdraw religion in general, and with it the best sanctions of moral and social obligation from all consideration and notice of Law…

 

To construe it as breaking down the common law barriers against licentious, wanton, and impious attacks upon Christianity itself, would be an enormous perversion of its meaning…

 

Christianity in its enlarged sense, as a religion revealed and taught in the Bible, is part and parcel of the law of the land…

 

Nor are we bound by any expression of the Constitution, as some has strangely supposed, either not to punish at all, or to punish indiscriminately like attacks upon the religion of Mahomet and the Grand Lama; and for this plain reason, that we are a Christian people, and the morality of this country is deeply engrafted upon Christianity, and not upon the doctrines or worship of these impostors…

 

The Court is accordingly of the opinion that the judgment… must be affirmed.”


—U. S. Supreme Court, 1892— 
Church of the Holy Trinity v. United States

 

“No purpose of action against religion can be imputed to any legislation, state or national, because 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.

 

The commission to Christopher Columbus…. “that it is hoped that by God’s assistance some of the continents and islands in the ocean will be discovered…”

 

The first colonial grant made to Sir Walter Raleigh in 1584…. and the grant authorizing him to enact statutes for the government of the proposed colony provided that they “be not against the true Christian faith…”

 

The first charter of Virginia, granted by King James I in 1606…. commenced the grant in these words: “…in propagating of Christian Religion to such People as yet live in Darkness…”

 

Language of similar import may be found in the subsequent charters of that colony…. in 1609 and 1611; and the same is true of the various charters granted to the other colonies. In language more or less emphatic is the establishment of the Christian religion declared to be one of the purposes of the grant. The celebrated compact made by the Pilgrims in the Mayflower, 1620, recites; “Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and advancement of the Christian faith… a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia…”

 

The fundamental orders of Connecticut, under which a provisional government was instituted in 1638-1639, commence with this declaration: “…And well knowing where a people are gathered together the word of God requires that to maintain the peace and union… there should be an orderly and decent government established according to God…to maintain and preserve the liberty and purity of the gospel of our Lord Jesus which we now profess…of the said gospel [which] is now practiced amongst us.”

 

In the charter of privileges granted by William Penn to the province of Pennsylvania, in 1701 it is recited: “…no people can be truly happy, though under the greatest enjoyment of civil liberties, if abridged of… their religious profession and worship…”

 

Coming nearer to the present time, the Declaration of Independence recognizes the presence of Divine in human affairs in these words:

 

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights… appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions… And for the support of this Declaration, with firm reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.”

 

…We find everywhere a clear recognition of the same truth… because of a general recognition of this truth [that we are a Christian nation], the question has seldom been presented to the courts…

 

There is no dissonance in these declarations. There is a universal language pervading them all, having one meaning; they affirm and reaffirm that this is a religious nation. Those are not individual sayings, declarations of private persons; they are organic utterances; they speak the voice of the entire people.

 

While because of a general recognition of this truth the question has seldom been presented to the courts, yet we find that in Updegraph v. The Commonwealth, it was decided that, Christianity, general Christianity, is, and always has been, a part of the common law… not Christianity with an established church…. but Christianity with liberty of conscience to all men.

 

And in The People v. Ruggles, Chancellor Kent, the great commentator on American law, speaking as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of New York, said:

 

“The people of this State, in common with the people of this country, profess the general doctrines of Christianity, as the rule of their faith and practice… We are a Christian people, and the morality of the country is deeply engrafted upon Christianity, and not upon the doctrines or worship of those impostors [other religions].”

 

And in the famous Case of Vidal v. Girard’s Executors, this Court… observed:

 

“It is also said, and truly, that the Christian religion is a part of the common law…”

 

If we pass beyond these matters to a view of American life as expressed by its laws, its business, its customs and its society, we find everywhere a clear recognition of the same truth. Among other matters note the following: The form of oath universally prevailing, concluding with an appeal to the Almighty; the custom of opening sessions of all deliberative bodies and most conventions with prayer; the prefatory words of all wills, ” In the name of God, amen”; the laws respecting the observance of the Sabbath, with the general cessation of all secular business, and the closing of courts, legislatures, and other similar public assemblies on that day; the churches and church organizations which abound in every city, town and hamlet; the multitude of charitable organizations existing everywhere under Christian auspices; the gigantic missionary associations, with general support, and aiming to establish Christian missions in every quarter of the globe.

 

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…We find everywhere a clear recognition of the same truth.

 

The happiness of a people and the good order and preservation of civil government essentially depend upon piety, religion and morality.

 

Religion, morality, and knowledge [are] necessary to government, the preservation of liberty, and the happiness of mankind.”


—U.S. Supreme Court, 1931— 
U.S. vs. Macintosh

 

“We are a Christian people… and acknowledge with reverence the duty of obedience to the will of God.”


—U. S. Supreme Court, 1952— 
Zorach v. Clauson

[William O. Douglas SCOTUS Opinion]

 

“The First Amendment, however, does not say that in every respect there shall be a separation of Church and State. Rather, it studiously defines the manner, the specific ways, in which there shall be no concert or union or dependency one on the other.

 

That is the common sense of the matter. Otherwise the state and religion would be aliens to each other—hostile, suspicious, and even unfriendly…

 

Municipalities would not be permitted to render police or fire protection to religious groups. Policemen who helped parishioners into places of worship would violate the Constitution. Prayers in our legislative halls; the appeals to the Almighty in the messages of the Chief Executive; the proclamation making Thanksgiving Day a holiday; “so help me God” in our courtroom oaths—these and all other references to the Almighty that run through our laws, or public rituals, our ceremonies, would be flouting the First Amendment. A fastidious atheist or agnostic could even object to the supplication with which the Court opens each session: God save the United States and this Honorable Court.

 

We are a religious people and our institutions presuppose a Supreme Being… When the state encourages religious instruction or cooperates with religious authorities by adjusting the schedule of public events to sectarian needs, it follows the best of our traditions.

 

For it then respects the religious nature of our people and accommodates the public service to their spiritual needs. To hold that it may not would be to find in the Constitution a requirement that the government show a callous indifference to religious groups. That would be preferring those who believe in no religion over those who do believe…

 

We find no constitutional requirement making it necessary for government to be hostile to religion and to throw its weighed against the efforts to widen the scope of religious influence. The government must remain neutral when it comes to competition between sects…

 

We cannot read into the Bill of Rights such a philosophy of hostility to religion.”

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Disputing Separation Church/State Part 3

John R. Houk

© March 20, 2014

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