Monday, August 29, 2011

The United States is NOT a Christian Nation!

by Len Hart, The Existentialist Cowboy

Whenever any court of any type restricts, bans or opposes religious intrusions into governmental affairs, an army of fundies --like cockroaches -- are sure to crawl out of the woodwork. Just as predictably, an army of politcians will ooze out --like sweet stuff --upon a public stage to court them.

Predictably, this circle of jerks --consisting as it does of the deluded on the one hand and the gaggle of oportunists/politcians on the other hand --will denounce the decision(s) and declare that it is against the 'wishes and intents' of the nation's "founding fathers".

The most obvious examples have to do with separation of church and state which should be a settled issue on the side of 'separation'. Propagandists throughout the right wing would have it otherwise. They try to re-write history everyday. If we are not vigilant, one day, they will succeed in creating and imposing upon us a theocracy when, in fact, the founders had decried 'theocracy' and deliberately created a secular state.

An alarming, perhaps a growing, number throughout the right wing will tell you with a straight face that the United States was founded upon the 'Christian' religion and that the founders were themselves 'Christians'. Neither statement is true. The U.S. is not a Christian nation nor was it intended to be. The founders themselves were not Christian, some where 'deists', others espoused no religion whatsoever. To sum up: our founders were not Christians and certainly did not believe in a literal interpretation of the bible.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, nor prohibiting the free execise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of people peacably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
First Amendment, U.S. Constitution [emphasis above is mine, EC]
One wonders what it is about 'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion' that is not understood by the American 'right wing'.
Now be it known, That I John Adams, President of the United States of America, having seen and considered the said Treaty do, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, accept, ratify, and confirm the same, and every clause and article thereof. And to the End that the said Treaty may be observed, and performed with good Faith on the part of the United States, I have ordered the premises to be made public; And I do hereby enjoin and require all persons bearing office civil or military within the United States, and all other citizens or inhabitants thereof, faithfully to observe and fulfill the said Treaty and every clause and article thereof.
--John Adams, Treaty of Tripoli
The organized, concerted right wing effort to tear down the 'wall of separation' between church and state is a repugnant revision of our history that must not be tolerated.

Thomas Jefferson is not, by definition, a 'founder'; nevertheless, he drafted the Declaration of Independence and shared with those who later made up the Constitutional Convention, the view that the United States was --in no way --'founded upon the Christian religion'.

The United States is NOT a 'Christian' nation.
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.

--Thomas Jefferson, Danbury Letter
We will never be free to relax with respect to this issue. The American right wing, extremists and religious fanatics have a subversive agenda. Unless they are constantly opposed or stopped, they will stop at nothing to effect their agenda. They have already proven that they are willing to change the meaning and legal significance of 'precedent' upon which is based the legal and philsophical underpinnings of Western Civilization.
Clarence Thomas is articulating the view that precedent doesn't count... I think that if Bush were to appoint people who believe that precedent doesn't count, you would really see a carnage of the laws passed by the New Deal courts.... I think that this...new Court is perfectly capable of reaching back and substantially reversing and eroding the decisions of the Supreme Court in the late 1930s. And that, to me, is a great danger.

--Martin Garbus
It is not claimed in the preamble to the Constitution that God ordained our Constitution! No external lawgiver is cited! Nor is the Constitution based --as Gary Bauer had said --on the Ten Commandments. The Constitution never mentions the Ten Commandments. The Constitution is not based on the Talmud, nor the Upanishads, nor the Bhagavad-Gita, nor the Koran!

Fundamentalists of any religious persuasion should read the Constitution from the first letter to the last period. They should be required to count the number of times the word "God" is used!

NOT ONCE!

Count the number of times the word "Christian" is used!

NOT ONCE!

Count the number of times that the name of any religion is named or even referenced!

NOT ONCE!

That is the case because the Constitution is a secular document creating a secular, humanist nation --A FREE REPUBLIC --and until it is overthrown by GOP/wing nuts/Religious fanatics in a coup d'etat, it will remain so!

Five ideologues have proven themselves contemptuous of both the rule of law and a basic principle underlying our founding: the separation of church and state! The constitutional subversives are Chief Justice John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, Samuel A. Alito and Sandra Day O'Connor. None of them can be trusted to be faithful stewards of our heritage, our Constitution, indeed, our very freedoms as they are guaranteed to us in that document. Some examples:
In 1993, William Osburne was convicted of kidnapping, assaulting and raping a woman in Anchorage, Alaska. He spent the next 14 years of his life behind bars. Osburne insists that he is innocent, the State of Alaska has in its possession DNA evidence which will once and for all prove his guilt or innocence, and Osburne has offered to pay for DNA testing out of his own pocket. Allowing Osburne to prove—or disprove–his claim of innocence will cost Alaska literally nothing.

--Ian Millhiser, Think Progress, In 5-4 Decision, Conservative Supreme Court Denies DNA Evidence To Potentially Innocent Man
Yet another example among scores:
Today, a Supreme Court majority ruled against women by siding with the country's largest employment discriminator, saying Wal-Mart, essentially, is too big to sue. The brave women, led by Betty Dukes, who stood up to Wal-Mart at great personal sacrifice, are told simply they're on their own.

"With this decision, the Supreme Court has assisted Wal-Mart in its efforts to systematically dole out promotions and pay raises on the basis of sex. The law calls that illegal discrimination, but this Court has turned its back on the more than million women who only sought simple justice," said NOW President Terry O'Neill. "The women of Wal-Mart deserve respect and fair treatment, and we will continue to stand up for their rights."

In 2002, NOW declared Wal-Mart a "Merchant of Shame" as part of its Women-Friendly Workplace Campaign. NOW chapters have led countless community demonstrations at Wal-Mart stores around the country to educate shoppers about Wal-Mart's exploitation of its women employees.

Today, NOW demands an immediate legislative response to help the women of Wal-Mart. We call on Congress to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would provide more effective remedies to victims of sex-based wage discrimination. This bill passed in the House in January 2009, but ultimately was defeated in the Senate.

"The gap between women's and men's pay is still sizeable, which is why it's so important to get this legislation passed," stated O'Neill. "We will continue supporting the efforts of Senators Mikulski, Cantwell, Gillibrand, Klobuchar, Stabenow and others to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act and hold accountable those who stand in the way of this sensible remedial bill."

A legislative remedy is only part of the solution, however. NOW also calls on Wal-Mart to end its unconscionable resistance to employees' efforts to form unions and bargain collectively over pay, benefits and other conditions of employment. Research demonstrates that unionized women workers earn better wages and have better benefits than their non-union counterparts. In fact, women in unions earn 11.2 percent more or $2.00 more per hour than non-union women workers. And the gender wage gap is smaller in unionized workplaces.

--Political Affairs, In 5-4 decision, conservative Supreme Court justices dismiss Wal-Mart lawsuit
These 'justices' and the American right wing which supports them wish to undo the work of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, George Mason and every founder whose signature is to be found at the bottom of what has been called the most magnificant document to have issued from the mind of humankind: the U.S. Constitution.

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