Serving Lehigh and Northampton Counties
This is Part One of a two-part series. This first part will discuss the prevailing belief that there should be a “wall of separation” between church and state and a brief comment on the confusion about the definition of “religion”. Here is Part One.
Separation of Church and State – Part One
There is a strenuous effort among many Americans to keep any mention of religion, that is, any reference to God, out of government affairs. The underlying argument is to formulate government structure, legislation and administration based on strict logic and the best evidence science can provide. This, it is argued, would allow for the most universally accepted governance, free from any undue influence from the varied and disparate religious beliefs embraced by its citizens.
Individual Rights and Sovereignty
The problem, however, is that this argument is not in keeping with our founding documents. The Declaration of Independence clearly states that the principles upon which this nation was formed was based on the Judeo-Christian belief in a Creator who has bestowed on each citizen life, liberty, and the consequent resulting individual sovereignty. It further stipulates that the singular role of government is to protect these rights and that sovereignty. The Declaration’s prescribed formulation was considered optimal over any other form of government and considered most likely to produce the greatest benefits and prosperous outcome for its people.
Religious Freedom: An Essential Liberty
Like it or not, the majority of Americans still hold to the Judeo-Christian notion that we were created by a generous and caring supreme being. Fortunately for those citizens who do not share this belief, there is no penalty or restriction imposed on them for holding or expressing their differing viewpoint. They are only asked to adhere to the law of the land as defined by our Constitution. And, should they persuade enough fellow citizens to adopt their point of view, the same Constitution provides them with the path and the means of changing these founding principles to conform with what they think would be better for the country.
Nations that do not recognize individual sovereignty are not so tolerant. Any suggested political formulation that removes the Creator as the ultimate source of individual liberties is likely to have the ultimate authority assumed by the one entity that has been permitted the legal use of force, namely, the government.
That is why the current fervor for restricting any expression of a religious nature in a public (government) forum is subversive to our liberties as well as being completely unfounded. The innocent sounding “wall of separation” is neither supported in law or tradition. The phrase was first used by Thomas Jefferson to a Baptist minister to reassure the cleric that the government would “never” make any effort to restrict him or his congregation in the free expression of their faith. Isn’t it ironic that perverse forces today have completely turned that promise around and now claim the concept means to “protect the government from religion”? Moreover, Jefferson, Washington, Franklin, Adams, Hamilton, Madison and most of their contemporaries emphasized that religious principles are the well-spring of our liberties and to constrain or diminish the free expression of one’s faith will only lead to the eventual loss of all remaining freedoms.
God versus Religion
There is a good deal of confusion between believing in God and practicing a religion. The Founding Fathers did not want to establish a theocracy, i.e., a state religion. Nor did they want to give any organized religion a preferential status in government affairs. That is why they wrote the First Amendment as they did, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”. And yet their documents and correspondence are filled with exhortations to honor God and to anchor our freedoms in that belief. The seeming contradiction comes from their distinction between acceptance of the existence of a Supreme Being and any organized religion with its own interpretation of what that means and the set of rules that were derived from that particular belief system. Our Founding Fathers were philosophically oriented and thought it quite rational and reasonable to acknowledge an ultimate cause of all creation and that Cause had to be infinite in all things. How one chose to honor that Supreme Being was an individual decision but a freedom that was nevertheless essential for it was the foundation of all other freedoms.
Part Two will address the confusion regarding the necessary relationship between the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Part Two will be continued next week.
Here are the videos that were viewed during our "Everything You Need to Know About ObamaCare (but didn't know who to ask)" meeting:
Links to the rest of this video series by Dr. Jill Vecchio:
Pt 4 State Exchanges and Employers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AD8bInqBazI&feature=channel
Pt 5 Doctors and Patients: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mroaiJfQuMk&feature=related
Pt 6 Judicial/Constitutional issues:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rpa_JXbg4c0&feature=related
Pt 7 Ideas for Real Healthcare Reform:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wDk_GhE9Q1E&feature=related
And a video that we didn't have time for:
This Video explains much of why we are sliding into bankrupcy!
We need our State Government to take the aggressive acts that Wisconsin have taken!
A scam being perpetrated to preserve Big Government while destroying the private sector was exposed in a Thursday 5/24/2012 Wall Street Journal Op Ed by David Malpass. This scam is framed as the debate between Austerity vs. Growth. It is being perpetrated by dishonest politicians and media in both Europe and the U.S. The scam equivocates on the word "Austerity" by conflating together two complete opposites -- Austerity for Governments versus Government-imposed austerity on the private sector.
From the Op Ed:
' The conflict between growth and austerity is artificial and framed to favor bigger government. Growth comes from economic freedom within a framework of sound money, property rights, and a rule of law that restrains government overreach. Businesses won't invest or hire as much in an environment where governments dominate the economy. Thus, government austerity is absolutely necessary for economic growth in both the short and long run.
' Economics has often ignored the critical distinction between austerity for the government and government-imposed austerity on the private sector. In the former, governments which are over-budget sell assets, restrain their hiring, and limit their mission to essentials. That's growth-oriented austerity.
'In the private-sector version of austerity, governments impose new taxes and mandates on the private sector while maintaining their own personnel, salaries and pensions. That's the antigrowth version of austerity prevalent in Europe's austerity programs.'
Please read the whole Op Ed so that you are not fooled by this Statist scam.
This January 20 the Obama Administration issued a regulation requiring all employers to provide health care coverage for their employees for sterilization, contraception and abortive drugs or be penalized $2000 per employee. The only exception given was to Churches, the actual houses of worship, but not to any other affiliated religious-based institutions, such as, hospitals, schools, hospice centers, charities or other religious service organizations. This ruling is in direct violation of the basic religious principles of Catholics, Lutherans, Orthodox Jews, Seventh Day Adventists, and many other religious institutions. It is also in direct violation of our First Amendment clause stating “Congress shall make no law…prohibiting the free exercise (of religion)”. Notice, not even Congress can pass a law to this effect, never mind issuing a simple regulation from the Executive branch.
The outraged response by the Catholic bishops was immediate; they had their pastors all across the nation read a letter to all their parishioners this past Sunday stating they cannot “comply with this unjust law without compromising our convictions”. The Catholic Archbishop for Military Services, Timothy Broglio, went even further; He called on all Catholics “to resist the policy initiative…because it represents a violation of the freedom of religion recognized by the US Constitution”. Unfortunately, Secretary of the Army, John McHugh, had the Office of the Chief of Chaplains direct senior chaplains not to read the Archbishop’s letter but to make an edited version available at the back of the chapel.
Nor does the recent “compromise” of having the insurance companies of religious institutions pay for such coverage resolve the problem. First, a number of religious institutions are self-insured and their insurance company simply provides administrative services, meaning the religious institution would be directly funding the very practices they find abhorrent to their values and beliefs. Even where these institutions are not self-insured, the insurance companies would simply incorporate the cost of providing these contraceptive and abortifacient drugs into the total cost of providing the employees with such health care coverage. Insurance companies are not in the business of providing free services that would be a breech of trust of their fiduciary responsibility to their stockholders.
The Obama Administration has now compounded their felonious violation of Individual Rights with their demand that insurance companies provide free medical services. Why not ask those government controlled auto manufacturers to provide free cars or those banks beholden to so many governmental regulations to provide free cash? Is there any limit to which the Obama Administration thinks it can manipulate its citizens and the law of the land?
Such a contentious and insensitive ruling by this Administration reflects a grievous disregard for our individual rights so clearly defined in our Constitution and a display of arrogance that should sound an alarm to all Americans, regardless of party, to denounce such action and demand its repudiation. To paraphrase an old adage, “First they came for the Catholics, I did not speak out because I was not Catholic, then they came for other Christians, and I did not speak out because I was not Christian, then they came for Conservatives, and I did not speak out because I was not a Conservative, then they came for me, but there was no one left to speak for me. It’s time to speak out.
Executive Board, Lehigh Valley Tea Party
For more LVTP videos visit our YouTube page
|Page 6 of 7|
Know another great quote from the Founders?
As an active group, our members make the news practically weekly.