God And Politics, How far do we take Seperation of Church and State?

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by Bonnie, Oct 4, 2004.

  1. Bonnie
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    Bonnie Senior Member

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    www.townhall.com/columnists/davidlimbaugh/printdl20040625.shtml

    Partisan media stalwart Helen Thomas is just the latest in a long line of commentators to argue that religion and politics don't mix. Like the others, she is woefully misguided.
    Kerry himself said,"I am not a spokeperson for the church, and the church is not a spokesperson for the Unites States of America. I'm running for president, and I'm running to uphold the Constitution, which has a strict seperation of church and state."
    The idea that Kerry is running to uphold the Constitution is...well interesting. I guess it depends on what your idea of the Constitution is. But it is amazing that liberals like Kerry cling to this superficial notion that our religious liberties are dependent on a radical seperation of church and state.
    Even if the First Amendment mandated a strict seperation of churhc and state--as opposed to prohibiting the establishment of a national church--it is difficult to see how a reasonable person could interpret the seperation principal as requiring office holders not to infuse their governace with their worldview.
    Indeed it's hard to imagine how anyone with the slightest grip on reality could believe that any human being, politician or not, could seperate who he is from what he does. If our religious moorings, or lack therof, don't largely define who we are, then nothing does.
    But that't the extreme degree to which irationality has captured the secularist psyche today. the secularist not only advocates extending the seperation principal to the point of smothering religious liberty. he demands that religion--at least christain religion--be privatized (relegated to churches and homes)
    Actually it's worse. He sometimes doesn't even want the church to be free to express itself on religious matters if such expressions could be construed to overlap into politics, as they inevitably do, especially on social issues.
    Russell Kirk wrote, "Now perhaps it would be very convenient for all of us if the several great divisions of knowledge could be tucked neatly into seprate cells, never to meet. But the world does not work that way. Poltics moves upward into ethics, and ethics ascends to theology. ...There is bond between religious conviction and order in society. I trust none of us shall become political christains; but I hope that we shall not be afraid to infuse Christian faith into politics. A society which denies the heart it's role becomes, in very short order, a heartless society."
     
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  2. nakedemperor
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    nakedemperor Senior Member

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    I agree that one's moral convictions are greatly influenced, if not entirely dictated, by one's religion. Therefore it follows that you can't expect the President to completely ignore his faith in policy-making, in terms of moral rectitude. Many people's critique however, has to do with the assertion that the president has allowed specific dogmas (e.g. 'thou shalt not lie with a man as thou would lie with a woman') to pervade his thoughts on constitutional constructionism. The president, in 2000, sold himself as a "strict constitutional constructionist". That was a load of crap, considering he's supported constitutional amendments to prevent gay marriages, outlaw abortion, criminilization of flag burning, to enshrine victim's rights, to balance to budget, etc. etc. etc. He probably thinks the constitution was written by activist founding fathers ;) Anyway, back to his religion: its the specific reason for his backing gay marriage ban. He doesn't see it as a legal, issue, a children's safety issue, a health issue, none of that-- he just think it "desanctifies marriage". OK, marriage is a secular insitution at the state level, where does "desanctification" find its way into the presidents' rhetoric?

    That being said, I think it's important for the president to have good morals. Being a Christian makes it likely for him to have those. So, thumbs up to that.

    Many people say that "freedom of religion" is guaranteed but "freedom FROM religion is not". I disagree. I think "freedom of religion" INCLUDES freedom from religion. It means your children shouldn't be forced to say "I pledge allegiance...under God". You are free FROM having to acknowledge God.
     
  3. Bullypulpit
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    Bullypulpit Senior Member

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    While ones philosophical views, be they of religious origin or not, inform and shape the decisions we make each day, it is simply inapproriate to use the bullypulpit (no pun intended) of political office to force those views upon anyone else. The only way to do that is at the point of a gun, and I don't think we're at that point yet.

    Politcal doctrine being actively shaped by religious doctrine has no place in a free and pluralistic society, such as the one we enjoy in America. It may be acceptable in a theocracy, but not in the United States. Some of the first European settlers here came to flee religious persecution. It would be an insult to their memory then, to institute a state sanctioned religion and the persecution of other religions that would arise.
     
  4. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    Everyone check your morals at the door before you go into vote !!! :poke:
     
  5. 5stringJeff
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    5stringJeff Senior Member

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    No one is talking about instituing a state sanctioned religion. No one is talking about persecuting minority religions (which, BTW, happens to Christians in many other countries). All that people are talking about is treating all religions equally in the eyes of the law.
     
  6. Bonnie
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    Bonnie Senior Member

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    Ludicrous Dillo, and they missed the entire point of the post. :rolleyes:
     
  7. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    oh well--worth a shot :dunno:
     
  8. Bonnie
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    Bonnie Senior Member

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    So how far do we take it? Do we take all reference to God completely out of the public arena, and just keep it in churches and homes...........Sounds a lot like communism to me!! I think those early American settlers might be turning over in their graves right now at what is going on. Early Americans came here to freely celebrate all religions and to escape the battle going on between Protestants and Catholics in Europe............
     
  9. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    The answer is obvious to me now--people ARE the government so we just need to remove religion from the people so they don't corrupt the government.
     
  10. Bonnie
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    Bonnie Senior Member

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    What next? I have to remove the rosary beads from my car's rear view mirror because the person behind me might get offended thinking Im shoving my religion down their throats??
     

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