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Old 03-31-2006, 07:15 PM   #91
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Originally posted by BorderGirl
The framers did not advocate freedom FROM religion, just freedom OF religion.
And how do you know that?

Freedom of religion is also freedom from religion. You cannot have one without the other.

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Old 03-31-2006, 11:12 PM   #92
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And how do you know that?

Freedom of religion is also freedom from religion. You cannot have one without the other.

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Actually, you can't have freedom from religion beyond the right to exercise one's own religion.
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Old 03-31-2006, 11:14 PM   #93
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Actually, you can't have freedom from religion beyond the right to exercise one's own religion.
But having someone else's religion as a basis for law certainly goes against the idea of freedom of religion, particularly if that religious basis runs contrary to science and/or logic.

Again, I doubt atheists object to the private exercise of religion as much as public applications of religion shoved down their throat. Including phrases like "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance, for instance, just seem like asinine provocation after a while.

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Old 03-31-2006, 11:30 PM   #94
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But having someone else's religion as a basis for law certainly goes against the idea of freedom of religion, particularly if that religious basis runs contrary to science and/or logic.
Religious influence in laws has always existed and will continue to exist provided it doesn't rise to the level of establishment of government religion.
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Old 04-02-2006, 11:45 AM   #95
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Quote:
Originally posted by BorderGirl
The framers did not advocate freedom FROM religion, just freedom OF religion.
Yes, they did not ADVOCATE freedom from religion--they were not saying religion is a bad thing and religious people shouldn't be involved in the government. But nowhere--NOWWHERE--in the Constitution does it suggest that religous people SHOULD be running the government or religious people are better suited to run the government, or that the United States is a nation created by Christians, for Christians, and to be run by Christians.

The Bill of Rights does NOT say that we are entitled to any religion we choose as long as we choose some religion for all citizens are expected to be religious.

What IS reflected in the Constitution is that religion (including Christianity) is a private matter and the government has no business promoting or discouraging it. The founders had the seen damage of state churches and they didn't want to see that happen in America. To me it is very clear that they wanted to create a secular government (though not necessarily a secular nation--to try to create a NATION that was specifically secular or religious would have gone against the very principles they were promoting). And as a Christian, I do not want any other kind of government.
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Old 04-02-2006, 12:30 PM   #96
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But nowhere--NOWWHERE--in the Constitution does it suggest that religous people SHOULD be running the government or religious people are better suited to run the government, or that the United States is a nation created by Christians, for Christians, and to be run by Christians.
There is no express provision that an athiest, secular humanist, hindu, muslim, jew, etc. SHOULD be running the government or are better suited to running the government.

So far, it has been a product of the free choice of the electorate.
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Old 04-02-2006, 12:34 PM   #97
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Originally posted by maycocksean
What IS reflected in the Constitution is that religion (including Christianity) is a private matter and the government has no business promoting or discouraging it. The founders had the seen damage of state churches and they didn't want to see that happen in America. To me it is very clear that they wanted to create a secular government (though not necessarily a secular nation--to try to create a NATION that was specifically secular or religious would have gone against the very principles they were promoting). And as a Christian, I do not want any other kind of government.
There is a large gap between the establishment of a state religion and the requirement of a pure secular government.
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Old 04-02-2006, 02:52 PM   #98
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Originally posted by nbcrusader


There is no express provision that an athiest, secular humanist, hindu, muslim, jew, etc. SHOULD be running the government or are better suited to running the government.

So far, it has been a product of the free choice of the electorate.

Yes, but the only way to provide true freedom of religion is to have a secular state. Otherwise someone is going to find themselves having to follow someone else's religion. That's what they did in Turkey to stop forcing people who didn't want to practice Islam the right not to.
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Old 04-02-2006, 03:19 PM   #99
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Yes, but the only way to provide true freedom of religion is to have a secular state. Otherwise someone is going to find themselves having to follow someone else's religion. That's what they did in Turkey to stop forcing people who didn't want to practice Islam the right not to.
I'm sorry, are people lacking in religious freedom here? Unlike many other countries, we have a free market place of religious ideas and practices. People practice and preach without fear of government retribution. Try sharing your beliefs on a corner in Cairo if you want to understand lack of religious freedom.

So, the idea that the only way for free religion is a secular society is not quite true.

Besides, we have a secular society, but we also have laws that gain support from religious groups. However, none of those laws could be passed without the support of a non-religious segment of society.
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Old 04-02-2006, 04:38 PM   #100
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Originally posted by nbcrusader


I'm sorry, are people lacking in religious freedom here? Unlike many other countries, we have a free market place of religious ideas and practices. People practice and preach without fear of government retribution. Try sharing your beliefs on a corner in Cairo if you want to understand lack of religious freedom.

So, the idea that the only way for free religion is a secular society is not quite true.

Besides, we have a secular society, but we also have laws that gain support from religious groups. However, none of those laws could be passed without the support of a non-religious segment of society.
Cairo.........no thanks. We have freedom of religion here because we have a secular society. But you've got a point, religious people support freedom of religion because they want to be free to practice their religion.
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Old 04-02-2006, 05:10 PM   #101
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They only support it as far as it allows them to gain, once it involves them being knocked they try to compromise it.
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Old 04-02-2006, 10:52 PM   #102
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They only support it as far as it allows them to gain, once it involves them being knocked they try to compromise it.


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Old 04-02-2006, 10:59 PM   #103
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They only support it as far as it allows them to gain, once it involves them being knocked they try to compromise it.
That sounds like a universal maxim.
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Old 04-02-2006, 11:03 PM   #104
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Originally posted by nbcrusader
There is no express provision that an athiest, secular humanist, hindu, muslim, jew, etc. SHOULD be running the government or are better suited to running the government.


yes, because we don't have a religious litmus test -- at least on paper -- in a SECULAR government, which we do have, and even though it is set in stone, there are those who seek to chip away at it, each and every day, and it requires the vigilance *especially* of those who are not religious to keep that boundary in place.

your point about "the people" making their choices -- and instilling a de facto litmus test guaranteeing that all presidents have been, and will continue to be, Christian and white and male (and certainly heterosexual) -- actually speaks to exactly why the founding fathers were so insistent upon the freedom of the state from religious influence in the structure and operation of the government.

the constitution was written in a period when the country was beseiged by fundamentalist religious revivals. our Founding Fathers, in their detached and most likely "elitist" Deism, built in various checks on the power of direct democracy: they limited who could vote, assemblies elected Senators, and we now know a great deal about the Electoral College.

in short, they didn't want the fundies making the important decisions. these days, the democratic process has become much more inclusive, and the consequence of this is that the group of people whose religious enthusiasm the Founders once sought to exclude are now moving to the front and center of the political process.

welcome to democracy in a predominantly Christian land with a strong tradition of evangelicalism. we are at the future that the Founders hoped to avoid.

thus, we must seek to prevent the persecution of some of the people by most of the people, since ultimatley, it is ALL of the people who will benefit
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Old 04-02-2006, 11:15 PM   #105
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The whole "vigilence" argument is nonsense. It is more a matter of political decisions with which you disagree and not a matter of the goverment turning into a theocracy.

The statement "we are the future that the Founders hoped to avoid" is another example of a revisionist look at history to criticize where we are today. Rather than being disappointed with what has happened in this country, I would think the Founders would be surprised (and approve) that we've made it this long.
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