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Secular Gov't Opinions

User Thread
 57yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that TheIrishPagan is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Secular Gov't Opinions
I am not sure if this should be here, or under Religion, but I would like to hear on peoples OPINIONS concerning the secularization of government.

Should it be done?
Were the intention of our founding fathers a religious government/theocracy, or a pure secular government?
What do you see as the pros and cons for your ideal government?

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"Oops, it appears I have run over your dogma with my karma."
 51yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I keep seeing so many people, especially secular humanists, making this mistake. Religious government does not equate to theocracy. Theocracy is when Priests rule. If the United states Constitution required that only people who have taken an oath avowing that they are Christians are eligible to run for office (as a number of states originally mandated) the US would not be a theocracy - it would still be a Constitutional Democratic Republic.

When it comes to the Executive Branch America is clearly a Christian government as no non-Christian has ever been nominated and elected President. Joe Lieberman, an Orthodox Jew, is the only VP exception that I can think of. This is one of the reasons that FDR said America is a Christian nation. Furthermore, it is not only Christian but Protestant as JFK is the only Catholic elected Commander In Chief. Amazingly, a majority of Catholics preferred Bush in the last election to the self-labeled Catholic Kerry.

Regarding the Founders they clearly wanted a government that allowed for diverse participation from different Christian religions and some even wanted no religious requirement whatsoever. However they also did not envision a pure secular government or they would not have established Thanksgiving as a national holiday, employed on the govt payroll Christian ministers as Chaplains for the Congress, Prisons and military, promoted the use of the Bible for official oaths, declared God the ultimate Sovereign in the Declaration, began Court and Congressional sessions with a prayer, written the 1st amendment to the bill of rights (Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof) or acknowledged Jesus as Lord in the Constitution.

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 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
The Constitution clearly states that Church and State should be seperate.

Religious government implies that government derives its legitimacy from God, not the people, which is the same place Iran gets its legitimacy.

Just like politics should be racially blind, it should be religiously blind. It should advocate no religion and it shouldn't speak against any religion. It shouldn't support nor act against any religion.

Religious activity should be voluntary and should not be supported, or opposed, by my tax dollars.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 51yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"The Constitution clearly states that Church and State should be seperate."

It says absolutely no such thing. It says the government is not allowed to establish an official federal religion (athough it did not originally prohibit states from doing so) and that no law can ever prevent the free exercise of religion.

"Religious government implies that government derives its legitimacy from God, not the people, which is the same place Iran gets its legitimacy."

And the people who legitimate their governments, get their rights from God, so who is the ultimate sovereign?

"Religious activity should be voluntary and should not be supported, or opposed, by my tax dollars."

So the military and federal prisons shouldn't be allowed to hire chaplains?

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 57yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that TheIrishPagan is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"It says absolutely no such thing. It says the government is not allowed to establish an official federal religion (athough it did not originally prohibit states from doing so) and that no law can ever prevent the free exercise of religion.'
Actually it does not state a definite separation of Church and State. This opinion arises from a letter of Thomas Jefferson interpreting the 1st Amendment in a letter to the Danbury Baptist Association in January 1, 1802:
quote:
I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between church and State.

However, there is a complete lack of any mentions concerning a 'Christian Intention' in the Supreme Law of our land. There is a glaringly complete lack of reference to Christianity, God, Jesus, or any Supreme Being. The only mention of religion at all are
quote:
The 1st Amendment - "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion. . ."
Article VI, Section 3 - ". . . no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."

One would be prudent to note that there is also a total lack of evidence in ANY document created by our founding fathers to state unequivocally that the government was to support Christianity.
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"And the people who legitimate their governments, get their rights from God, so who is the ultimate sovereign?'

In my opinion, this argument is moot, when considering democracy. That a person received their rights from any supreme being is a matter for theosophical debate.
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"So the military and federal prisons shouldn't be allowed to hire chaplains?'

No, they should not, in my opinion; it should be the responsibility of that particular religion to supply their own clergy. However, both institutions are hiring on Clergy from non-Xian religions, including Wiccan Clergy and 1st Nations religious counselors.
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'Just like politics should be racially blind, it should be religiously blind. It should advocate no religion and it shouldn't speak against any religion. It shouldn't support nor act against any religion.'

Just as the government is racially desegregated, it is also religiously so. What I support, is our federal and local governments become, for lack of better words 'religiously, racially and gender generic'. It cannot accomplish this, by the continuing support of one of the religions present in the US today.


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"Oops, it appears I have run over your dogma with my karma."
 51yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"However, there is a complete lack of any mentions concerning a 'Christian Intention' in the Supreme Law of our land. There is a glaringly complete lack of reference to Christianity, God, Jesus, or any Supreme Being. The only mention of religion at all are - However, there is a complete lack of any mentions concerning a 'Christian Intention' in the Supreme Law of our land. There is a glaringly complete lack of reference to Christianity, God, Jesus, or any Supreme Being. The only mention of religion at all are "

Again, not true - Jesus is recognized as Lord in the Constitution.

"In my opinion, this argument is moot, when considering democracy. That a person received their rights from any supreme being is a matter for theosophical debate."

Hardly - the Declaration makes this point clear and I think it very important. If our rights come from government or the King then those rights can rescinded by governments or Kings. If, however, our rights come from God then they are universal and non-negotionable and no government or King can justify a right to take away our rights.

"No, they should not, in my opinion; it should be the responsibility of that particular religion to supply their own clergy. However, both institutions are hiring on Clergy from non-Xian religions, including Wiccan Clergy and 1st Nations religious counselors."

So what is wrong with that?

"Just as the government is racially desegregated, it is also religiously so. What I support, is our federal and local governments become, for lack of better words 'religiously, racially and gender generic'. It cannot accomplish this, by the continuing support of one of the religions present in the US today."

I think ya'll have a radical misunderstanding of what a Republic is.

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 57yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that TheIrishPagan is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
'Again, not true - Jesus is recognized as Lord in the Constitution.'

Please post excerpts to validate the opinion.
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"Hardly - the Declaration makes this point clear and I think it very important. If our rights come from government or the King then those rights can rescinded by governments or Kings. If, however, our rights come from God then they are universal and non-negotionable and no government or King can justify a right to take away our rights.'

Again, the Declaration is a document of intention, and has no bearing on our laws.
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"So what is wrong with that?'

Nothing, just wondering if you were aware.
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'I think ya'll have a radical misunderstanding of what a Republic is.'

A republic is a political system, where the citizens of that republic vote for their leaders who then are ultimately responsible to the citizens, and utilize that republic's laws to govern. Doesn't sound radical to me.

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"Oops, it appears I have run over your dogma with my karma."
 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
I honestly don't care for the Republic. I care for liberal democracy, the will of the majority but the rights of the minority.

One of those rights is to not be governed through the pretext of God.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 51yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
Actually, not to be cruel, I'll let you find it - more fun that way. In a few days if you still cant find it Ill show you where, lol.

"Again, the Declaration is a document of intention, and has no bearing on our laws."

The Declaration is a legal founding document that justifies our Independence and government. It is of great importance and should never be diminished.

re: Republic - it is a representative form of government - if the majority is Xian then their views will be represented in their elected officials. Of course the minority is entitled to the same rights as the majority but the minority also does not have a right to prohibit the rights of the majority simply because they find the majority's views offensive.

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 35yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Angelfire is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
What I am saying, is the 51% can vote to exterminate the other 49%. There problem arises: "Who defines the rights of the minority?". It certainly shouldn't be a majority.

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"Durch Nacht und Blut das Licht"
 51yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
The Constitution, the ultimate law of the land, does. Which is why I support our Constitutional democratic Republic because ours outlines the rights of all citizens. Furthermore, the Declaration makes it clear that those are rights shared by all citizens equally because they come from God and thus Kings or men cannot take them away.

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 57yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that TheIrishPagan is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
'Actually, not to be cruel, I'll let you find it - more fun that way. In a few days if you still cant find it Ill show you where, lol.'

Lame. You can't post an excerpt because there isn't one.
-------------------------------------------
"The Declaration is a legal founding document that justifies our Independence and government. It is of great importance and should never be diminished.'

No one is 'diminishing' the Declaration. My point is that it does not have any legal bearing on our nation's laws, where the Constitution is the very document that establishes this nation's laws.
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'Of course the minority is entitled to the same rights as the majority but the minority also does not have a right to prohibit the rights of the majority simply because they find the majority's views offensive'

The majority does not have the right to have the government support their religious views at taxpayer's expense. The Coinage Act and the addition of God to our Pledge are just two examples of this at the federal level.


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"Oops, it appears I have run over your dogma with my karma."
 51yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that Xris is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
"Lame. You can't post an excerpt because there isn't one. "

LMAO OK what is the very last thing written in the Constitution.....?

"No one is 'diminishing' the Declaration. My point is that it does not have any legal bearing on our nation's laws, where the Constitution is the very document that establishes this nation's laws."

Yes the Constitution is the law of the land and the Declaration is the legal document justifying the Constitution. Both are considered our Founding Documents and both have baring on Constitutional interpretation by the S Court.

"The Coinage Act and the addition of God to our Pledge are just two examples of this at the federal level."

Sorry belief and recognition of God, as both the Declaration and Constitution exhibit, is not the establishment of a religion - this issue is moot as it has already been settled by the S Court.

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 57yrs • M •
A CTL of 1 means that TheIrishPagan is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
quote:
but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

I assume you are not referring to the signatures. The above does not exactly make any claims about a God being Lord, and certainly no reference to Jesus or Christianity in general. Again, your argument is lame.
---------------------------------
"Yes the Constitution is the law of the land and the Declaration is the legal document justifying the Constitution. Both are considered our Founding Documents and both have baring on Constitutional interpretation by the S Court."

Please post a specific case of the Supreme Court using the Declaration as basis for law. The Declaration is a founding document, yes, but has no bearings on our laws, nor the language or meaning of the Constitution. The Declaration is a list of grievances, and makes no specific laws at all; it is an Official Document, as opposed to a Legal one. The governors of the first thirteen states created this document, before this country was even created. For those that may not have read the Declaration, here are the religious excerpts Christians are defending their right to 'Clear Majority' and government funded and supported religion...
quote:
...the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them...
...endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness...
And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm Reliance on the Protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

There are 1,330 words in the Declaration, excluding title and signatures, only 4 refer to any deity whatsoever, the first which has been described as deist by the writers of the Constitution and their contemporaries, and the remaining three are not exactly glaring references to a specific God. To repeat what I stated in another thread, it is clear that the Christian Majority of this country sees the removal of government and taxpayer supported Christian mottos, prayers, and references as an attack on their religion, and their 'Clear Majority'. Many of this Nation's Founders describe their intentions to a secular government in documents and private letters after the Constitution was created. A few quotes, from the 'Father of the Constitution' himself, ladies and gentlemen, may I present James Madison...
quote:
Speech to the General Assembly of Virginia, 1785, 'During almost fifteen centuries, the legal establishment of Christianity has been on trial. What have been the fruits of this trial? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy; ignorance and servility in the laity; and in both, clergy and laity, superstition, bigotry and persecution.'
From a document in Madison's own hand and re-published in the William and Mary Quarterly of October 1946...
'Strongly guarded as is the separation between Religion & Govt in the Constitution of the United States the danger of encroachment by Ecclesiastical Bodies, may be illustrated by precedents already furnished in their short history.'
'Is the appointment of Chaplains to the two Houses of Congress consistent with the Constitution, and with the pure principle of religious freedom? In strictness the answer on both points must be in the negative. The Constitution of the U.S. forbids everything like an establishment of a national religion. The law appointing Chaplains establishes a religious worship for the national representatives, to be performed by Ministers of religion, elected by a majority of them; and these are to be paid out of the national taxes.'
'The establishment of the chaplainship to Cong[res]s is a palpable violation of equal rights, as well as of Constitutional principles: The tenets of the chaplains elected [by the majority] shut the door of worship agst the members whose creeds & consciences forbid a participation in that of the majority.'


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'Sorry belief and recognition of God, as both the Declaration and Constitution exhibit, is not the establishment of a religion - this issue is moot as it has already been settled by the S Court.'

The Supreme Court has not resolved anything, as the have refused six times to hear just the case of Ten Commandments on government property, 4 times since 2001 alone. Also, a case already heard by the Supreme Court has already made precedence, in Stone v. Graham, (449 US 39 (1980)) which stated that the law placing the Ten Commandments in Virginia Schools was unconstitutional, by a 5-4 decision. We are also waiting for you to post your mystery quote from the Constitution mentioning any recognition of any God.

If I were to provide all of the quotes available from our Founding Fathers themselves that clearly states their intentions of a secular government, the owners of this Forum would become very cross indeed. There are just too many. Christianity began a sharp rise in this country around the mid-1830s, reaching nearly 60% in early 1860 during the Civil War, which is the exact time in history we see the beginning of the encroachment of Christianity into the government with the Coinage Act of 1864, which effectively changed our nation's motto. This was made official in 1956, some 169 years after the signing of the Constitution. An excellent article can be found at http://www.treas.gov/education/fact-sheets/currency/in-god-we-trust.html
.



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"Oops, it appears I have run over your dogma with my karma."
 35yrs • F •
A CTL of 1 means that niners69sgirl is a contributing member of Captain Cynic.
hey irish pagan ...i know you love me oh so much but i'm not gonna post yet cuz i didn't make it all the way through the thread cuz i'm still stuck on the what the word secular means lol so you tell me n i'll finish readin the thread n post my opinion

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"sonrisa siesta y fiesta ...if ya wanna know don't be afraid to ask i only bite on days that end in y"
Secular Gov't Opinions
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