Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Where does the Constitution say that Christians can't bring their values into the public square?

Separation of church and state is becoming an issue in the elections.

It’s painfully obvious that neither side is listening.

However, let me give some advice to those who make the technical argument that the “separation of church and state doesn’t exist in the First Amendment.”

Reframe the debate. Ask your opponent, “Where does the First Amendment say that Christians can’t bring their values into the public square?”

Or, “Are you saying the Constitution (First Amendment) prohibits people of faith from expressing their religious views in the public square?"

Keep repeating the question.

12 comments:

Craigg said...

yes please train and indoctrinate people on how to abuse one's rights.


Its the indoctrination of your views that we are protected from.

If you need to have a religious state to live in, meaning a religious indoctrinated and oppressive country, there is citizenship I am sure for availability in the Middle east. For they run their countries the way you want to.

Minnesota Family Council said...

Craigg, how is the expression of religious values in the public square and abuse of one's rights?

Craigg said...

Its you forcing your views onto me, your indoctrination of your thoughts onto mine, your forced "moral" ideas and lifestyle onto mine. You telling the public that only your way is the right way, and that all others are wrong. you forcing your religious views into the courts to be made of law, makes it a religious state. That is how the middle east is run. If I was to force you to NOT be able to live within your faith, that would be wrong of me as well. You have your choice, I have mine. For you to force your choice is where you are abusing not just me but the whole country and their rights.

Craigg said...

express not oppress is the root of our rights.

mom said...

Oppression is a form of slavery. But the MFC condones slavery since the bible does so.

jim said...

Contrary to what the Christian Right might like people to believe, godlessness is not enforced atheism or an active suppression of religion. Instead, godlessness is simply the absence of any specific worship or recognition of any gods. The godlessness of the public square is the absence of any official recognition or worship of any specific gods, regardless of what individuals might do on their own while in the public square. Official godlessness is thus a guarantee for personal liberty.

jim said...

There is absolutely no effort to prevent individuals from acknowledging or worshipping gods in the public square. What is restricted is the ability of the government to acknowledge or worship gods in the public square. To say that the public square is godless does not mean that religious and theistic beliefs don’t exist within it, but instead that the religious and theistic beliefs in it belong to the individuals in it rather than to the public square itself.

jim said...

Many religious theists will automatically assume that if the public square is godless, then they are being discriminated against and/or their right to free exercise of religion is being infringed upon. If this were true, that would mean that a “godly” public square discriminates against atheists. Is that what they desire? The truth is that the public square must be godless in order for the religious liberty of all to be protected. The idea that a godless public square infringes on liberty is based upon two misunderstandings.

First, many will assume that “godless” means that all religious expression is banned from the public square. This is incorrect because the adjective “godless” here refers to the nature of the public square itself, not the nature of the views which citizens bring to it. The public square is “godless” just like obtaining a driver’s license is godless: worship of gods plays no role. Another analogy is to point out that the public square is neither Republican nor Democrat because the nature of the public square does not reflect the policies of either political party; this does not mean, however, that citizens expressing the views of either party are banned. It simply means that they express those views on neutral ground. The same is the case with religious theists — the public square is neutral, even if they are not.

Second, many will think that if the public square is “godless,” then “godless” beliefs are being advanced to the detriment of religious beliefs. This is akin to the common argument that if public entities like school boards dropped explicitly Christian prayers, then the absence of an endorsement of Christianity would mean that the board is “promoting” atheism. This is obviously false — if school boards fail to endorse capitalism, does this mean they are endorsing communism? There is a middle-ground of neutrality where no one is being endorsed at all, and that’s what’s happening in a godless public square.

Minnesota Family Council said...

So Craigg, according to Jim, people of faith are welcome to express their values in the public square. Your comments insist that this expression is indoctrination, etc., etc,. etc.,

elaine said...

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion

The oppression and indoctrination lies within the fact that you want to force the laws to represent and to be written in a religious factor.

You do not get that you are a singular voice. That there will not be a law that is religious!

That is for your faith, your lifestyle and your choice to make. Follow your Gods laws, and live within them, do not force those opinions onto others. That is where oppression lies!

Chuck Darrell said...

Oh, please Elaine. I guess we can't pass laws to feed the poor, take care of the elderly or protect borrowers, to name just a few.

Have you ever considered how you benefit from the religious moral foundations that have influenced our government and courts?

Next you'll want to test our legislators for latent, devious moral thoughts that might influence legislation.

Craigg, every time we pass a law it forces an idea, philosophy, worldview and, yes even morality on the governed.

Clearly, all of your comments desire to "enslave" people of faith by "indoctrinating" them according to your "oppressive" speech codes.

Get a grip, the Founding Fathers expected religious convictions and morality to be part of the political debate. Go back and read Jeffersons' quote. Their genius was to prohibit a state religion.

elaine said...

giving to the poor, taking care of each other, in a shear equal way is not a morally religious view.

That is how you might perceive it, but there are many socialistic countries, that have fewer poor, non starving all going to school, and No religion to speak up.

Not to mention it was the Christians in this country that backed slavery, it was christians in this country didn't want women rights, it was christians as priests that molested children, it was chrisitians that condemn gay people, and it was christians that lynched, hung, dragged bodies with trucks to their deaths all in the name of their Christian God.

I can tell you that in no way did I ever benefit from any of those acts.