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Excerp: America is not a Christian Nation

User Thread
 63yrs • M •
lolipopboy is new to Captain Cynic and has less than 15 posts. New members have certain restrictions and must fill in CAPTCHAs to use various parts of the site.
Excerp: America is not a Christian Nation
America is a Christian nation and it was founded on Christian principles. This is the Big Lie that is constantly being uttered from fundamentalist pulpits. This untruth has been repeated so often, that most Christians believe that Jesus Christ was one of the Founding Fathers of our great nation.

This was not true when America was founded more than two centuries ago, and it's certainly not true today ;America is one of the most religiously diverse nations on the planet. It's this ethnic, religious and political diversity that's our greatest strength; religious polarization can only weaken our union.

If fundamentalists lie about this important matter -- they shouldn't be believed when they wax indignant on moral and spiritual matters. America is not a Christian nation; abortion is not murder; feminists are not witches; abstinence-only sex education does not work; SpongeBob and Tinky Winky are not gay (not that there is anything wrong with being homosexual); and George W. Bush does not have a direct line to the Almighty.

Our nation was founded not on Christian principles but on Enlightenment ideals.The intellectual leaders who created America believed that human reason could be used to combat ignorance, superstition and tyranny ; they had a natural animosity toward organized religion. It's not surprising that God is only a footnote in the grand documents that are the bedrock of our democracy.

The Constitution makes no mention whatever of any deity. In the eighty-five essays that make up The Federalist Papers, the Supreme Being is mentioned only twice. In the Declaration of Independence, the Big Guy gets two brief nods: A reference to "the Laws of Nature and Nature's God," and the often quoted line about men being "endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights."

If the Founding Fathers were Christians and they wanted to establish a Christian nation, then why didn't they mention Jesus Christ even once in a document that they knew would be the cornerstone and foundation of the emerging democracy? That's like Marx writing the "Communist Manifesto" without mentioning "socialism".

The distinguished leaders of the American revolution were not devout individuals, and they fought energetically to erect, in Thomas Jefferson's immortal words, "a wall of separation between church and state."

If we define a Christian as a believer in the divinity of Jesus Christ, then most of the leading lights of the American Revolution were not Christians at all. Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and Tom Paine were deists -- they believed in one Supreme Being but rejected revelation and all the supernatural elements of evangelical Christianity. John Adams was a professed liberal Unitarian; in his published writings he seemed more deist than Christian. In other words if these gentlemen were alive today, they would be more at home in a liberal Presbyterian congregation than at Jerry Falwell's Thomas Road Baptist Church.

It's latter-day interlopers who have breached the wall of separation between church and state. In God We Trust" did not appear on our coinage until the Civil War, and "under God" was introduced into the Pledge of Allegiance during the McCarthy hysteria in 1954.

If we really want to abide by the spirit of the Constitution and The Declaration of Independence -- we will put an end to all this foolishness about bringing back God into our public schools. Those who imagine a Christian America would be paradise, would be well advised to consider the theocracies of Iran, Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan under the Taliban.

Ironically, as our nation becomes less Christian and more religiously diverse, evangelicals redouble their efforts to make America more Christian.

Everyone who loves democracy and freedom must fight the efforts of fundamentalists to tear down the wall of separation between church and state. Jesus Christ may reign supreme in evangelical churches, but He should be kicked to the curb if He tries to scale the wall of separation and enter the political arena.

America is not a Christian nation. America is not a Christian nation. America is not a Christian nation. God, it feels good telling the truth. I may be a "little voice crying in the wilderness", but with the truth on my side, I will defeat a lie -- no matter how big.



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 50yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
You are right about only one thing = America IS not a Xian nation. However we were and to deny that fact is to live in a fanstasy world.

"Our nation was founded not on Christian principles but on Enlightenment ideals.The intellectual leaders who created America believed that human reason could be used to combat ignorance, superstition and tyranny ; they had a natural animosity toward organized religion.."

Where does the idea that all power must be checked come from? Original sin. Where does the idea that the 3 branches of gov't must be seperate and equal? The Bible - God's 3 roles as King, Lawmaker and Judge. Since no part of God is superior to the other part no branch was made superior to the other.

"It's not surprising that God is only a footnote in the grand documents that are the bedrock of our democracy"

I guess you've never read the declaration of independence?

Do you know what the word Providence means? You should look at how often the Founders use that term.

"'For, without the belief of a Providence that takes cognisance of, guards, and guides, and may favor particular persons, there is no motive to worship a Deity, to fear his displeasure, or to pray for his protection'
- Ben Franklin in his argument against the Enlightenment book Age of Reason

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 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Interesting... How often is God mentioned in Montesquieu's writing? Since that's where we find for the first time the seperation of powers idea.

Nonetheless, even if our institutions were inspired by Christian elements, I like to think the West is mostly secular. We don't (usually) teach genesis in schools after all. We aren't a theocracy like Iran or Saudi Arabia.

And I certainly think America should be more secular, which doesn't mean atheist, so that America becomes less like the terrorists she claims to be fighting.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 50yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"We don't (usually) teach genesis in schools after all. We aren't a theocracy like Iran or Saudi Arabia."

Let's say we did - how would that make us a theocracy? Are you saying that, since we used to, that we were a theocracy?

"And I certainly think America should be more secular, which doesn't mean atheist, so that America becomes less like the terrorists she claims to be fighting."

Aren't you comparing apples to oranges? Are you saying that there is no difference between Xianity and Islam?

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 32yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that sleepingwraith is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
.
.

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"Life is such sweet sorrow."
 50yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Right - I am a strong believer in the 1st amendment - the problem is that it has been wrongfully adjudicated over the last half century. The point of the establishment clause is to protect the Church (or religions) from government involvement and meddling not the other way around.

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 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"Let's say we did - how would that make us a theocracy? Are you saying that, since we used to, that we were a theocracy?"
More theocratic than you should be.

Just like the will of the majority can't legitimately infringe on the minority's rights, the will of the majority cannot legitimately make policy based on personal faith and God.

"Aren't you comparing apples to oranges? Are you saying that there is no difference between Xianity and Islam?"
Religion is religion. Intolerant christians are just as bad, I say, just as bad, as intolerant Muslims. It just so happens there are more intolerant Muslims right now.

However, intolerant Christianity is just as hostile to women and freedom as intolerant Islam is.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 50yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
" the will of the majority cannot legitimately make policy based on personal faith and God."

Sure they can - why should the will of an atheistic minority be the only ones that can make policy? That's dumb. lol

What the majority can not do is make policy that is unconstitutional. So as long as they pass laws (say outlawing slavery or abortion) motivated from their spiritual paradigms that are not violating the constitution they can pass whatever they want.

"Religion is religion.."

Absolute and utter nonsense. Saying religions are religions is as stupid as saying political systems are political systems or economic systems etc. You are too bright to be making such a laughable argument. Do I sense some anti-established-religions motivating this?

"Intolerant Christians are just as bad, I say, just as bad, as intolerant Muslims. It just so happens there are more intolerant Muslims right now. However, intolerant Christianity is just as hostile to women and freedom as intolerant Islam is"

Balderdash - the two are not comparable in any way, shape or form. Who are these intolerant Christian factions that you are describing? Please give me a modern example.

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 61yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that okcitykid is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
The first settlers of the U.S. colonies where Puritans, Pilgrams and Quakers.

The Quaker religion is still around, they would not support the Bush administration, as they are opposed to war.

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"A fool says I know and a wise man says I wonder."
 69yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that cturtle is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
The United States is a capitalist nation, not christian.
quote:
If the Founding Fathers were Christians and they wanted to establish a Christian nation, then why didn't they mention Jesus Christ even once in a document that they knew would be the cornerstone and foundation of the emerging democracy? That's like Marx writing the "Communist Manifesto" without mentioning "socialism".
Well you at least got one point right.
Christ as "King of Kings" should be Lord of the Christians Life.
As such Christians would never make an oath (pledge of alligence)
because he has a previous commitment to Chirst.
So they dressed Uncle Sam inn the robes of Christ so they could sell their bill of goods. They certainly lie well don't they?

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"Terrorist or tyrant, few may come to the Truth that both are poor choice."
 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"Sure they can - why should the will of an atheistic minority be the only ones that can make policy? That's dumb. lol"
For the same reason a German majority can't legitimately vote to exterminate a Jewish minority!

Religion is supposed to be between the individual and God. Thereby it should not be the object of public policy (which isn't the same of promoting atheism).

"What the majority can not do is make policy that is unconstitutional. So as long as they pass laws (say outlawing slavery or abortion) motivated from their spiritual paradigms that are not violating the constitution they can pass whatever they want."
I am arguing that secularism should be the part of all liberal democratic constitutions.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 50yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"If the Founding Fathers were Christians and they wanted to establish a Christian nation, then why didn't they mention Jesus Christ even once in a document that they knew would be the cornerstone and foundation of the emerging democracy"

They did - Jesus is acknowledged as Lord in the Constitution.

"For the same reason a German majority can't legitimately vote to exterminate a Jewish minority! "

WTF? So atheism is legitimate and religion is not? I have no idea what your point is.

"Religion is supposed to be between the individual and God."

Wrong - you are thinking of faith. Religion is an organization functioning within society thus it must fall under certain public policies. What the state should not do is establish one religion as being supreme to all others but enact policies that allow diversified participation.

"I am arguing that secularism should be the part of all liberal democratic constitutions."

Secularism is amoral and will lead to a decrease in rights - secularists saw no problem with enslaving their fellow men - secularists see no problem with murdering unborn children. Without strong religious foundations all liberal democracies will ultimately collapse.

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 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"Secularism is amoral and will lead to a decrease in rights - secularists saw no problem with enslaving their fellow men - secularists see no problem with murdering unborn children. Without strong religious foundations all liberal democracies will ultimately collapse."
What nonesense. Secularism is *not* the same thing as atheism.

Christians have not been above enslavement. In fact, Christianity and God was the number 1 justification for the tyranny of Kings and Emperors in Christendom for almost 2000 years.

Religion is defined by faith, it is a personal thing. No religion should be aknowledged, it should of course NOT be repressed. The government shouldn't repress it nor support it. The government should not be involved.

America does not have a state religion. That is why America is better than Iran. If America derives it legitimacy from God, you are just as bad as Iran.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 50yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"What nonesense. Secularism is *not* the same thing as atheism."

Sure it is - there is no practical difference - both the secularist and atheist live their lives in a state of abject rejection of a higher divine will. Both are amoral systems that promote the humanist 'religion'.

"Christians have not been above enslavement. In fact, Christianity and God was the number 1 justification for the tyranny of Kings and Emperors in Christendom for almost 2000 years."

Yes religion can be a powerful, maybe the most powerful, tool that the state or King uses to gain or maintain power. This was just as true before Christ was born or before Abraham was born. That is why I am a strong supporter of the proper interpretation of the establishment clause.

Lets not forget that the two great secular/atheist regimes of the 20th century, Nazi German and the USSR killed more people, including their own citizens, than all that probably were killed in the previous 500 years (maybe even more).

"Religion is defined by faith, it is a personal thing."

No religion is a communal thing - faith is personal. Religions have societal roles like helping the poor and widows and orphans and education. To ignore this historical role of religion in society is nonsensical.

"America does not have a state religion. That is why America is better than Iran. If America derives it legitimacy from God, you are just as bad as Iran."

Well I guess we are no better than Iran then (or England) because we do derive our legitimacy from God - you've really never read the declaration of independence?

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 34yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"Sure it is - there is no practical difference - both the secularist and atheist live their lives in a state of abject rejection of a higher divine will. Both are amoral systems that promote the humanist 'religion'."
In an atheist state, there is suppression of religion and atheism is explicitly taught. In a secular state, the government does exactly what it should, it doesn't MEDDLE in people's religious affairs.

The government has no buisness there.

"Lets not forget that the two great secular/atheist regimes of the 20th century, Nazi German and the USSR killed more people, including their own citizens, than all that probably were killed in the previous 500 years (maybe even more)."
Communism really its own religion. The way they deify Marx and Lenin makes me believe it might as well be a religion. Nazism was its own form of religion, Hitler's use of the word Providence was very common indeed. Its not religion, per se, which is evil. Its extremism.

Secularism, by definition, cannot be extreme as its essentially laissez faire and it DOESN'T COMMENT on the matter.

"Well I guess we are no better than Iran then (or England) because we do derive our legitimacy from God - you've really never read the declaration of independence?"
England is de facto secular. Yes we have a state church, yes we have a Queen, but we're de facto secular. We're not like Bavaria or Austria for instance who are officially secular but are iffy in practice.

It may be written in the constitution that God has a certain place in America. But where is legitimacy derived from? God? No, THE PEOPLE! By the people, for the people.

I vigourously oppose any Iran-style "By clerics, for God" crap.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
Excerp: America is not a Christian Nation
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