The uproar over a mosque being built near ground zero in New York is the latest assault on the Constitution’s guarantee of religious freedom, and as an extension, a group of bigots in Florida intend to burn the Koran on 9/11. The attack is predicated on fear and loathing that Republican Christian bigots have toward a non-Christian faith, and the bigots are trying to win votes by depriving one group their rights; based on fear and lies.
It’s nothing new, but an outright attack on the Constitution is alarming because it signals the second time Republicans are targeting a specific provision of the constitution that is not open for interpretation. Freedom of religion is not difficult to understand, and it was supported by the founding fathers. Indeed, freedom of religion is one reason many Europeans emigrated from their homelands to America.
Republicans, teabaggers, and neo-cons praise the original document before specific amendments were added. However, the 1ST Amendment IS from the original document the founding fathers approved, but the conservative mindset is such that only Christianity is a valid religion; regardless the precise meaning of the Constitution.
Conservative groups have said for years that America is a Christian nation, and that the founders addressed the issue in the Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Nowhere in the Constitution is the term “Christian nation” found, and the word Christian is not there either. If someone reads, studies, and examines the Constitution for 10 years, they will not find the words Christian or Jesus anyplace. It seems that if America was meant to be a Christian nation, the framers would have written it down.
There is also no mention of the Bible in the Constitution, or any mention of the Ten Commandments. Many right-wing bigots suggest the Ten Commandments should replace the Constitution, but the founding fathers certainly didn’t think the Ten Commandments were important enough to mention in our country’s main document. Maybe the founding fathers were smarter than Republicans and Christians.
They were certainly clever enough to realize that forbidding graven images just didn’t fit into any reasonable person’s mindset in 1776 or now. Do conservatives know that honoring an image with stars or symbols from the sky is forbidden in the Bible? Old glory is replete with stars on a sky-blue background, and any Christian who salutes or flies an American flag is in serious trouble with God.
Our country is not any religion, and religion has no place in government or public decision making. Any group may practice and worship as they please in America as long as they don’t injure or impinge on anyone’s freedom. Christians don’t see it that way, and force their fairy-tales on everyone.
America is supposed to be a beacon of religious tolerance, but the resurgence of radical Christianity and extremist Bible-thumpers is a danger that will not go away. The fear mongering and religion bashing in the last two weeks is atrocious and a danger to every American.
Europeans flocked to America to escape religious persecution, and now the stinking Dominionist Christians are trying to drive Muslims out. The framers of the Constitution guaranteed this could never happen in America with the 1st Amendment’s promise of religious freedom. Christian opponents of a mosque, holy book, or any religion are against America’s freedoms.
Perhaps Republicans are illiterate and unable to read the text of the 1st Amendment, but since they most certainly know how to read, the conclusion is they are anti-America, traitors, and a true danger to us all.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.