Friday, March 21, 2008

Separation of Church and State in the US

The ACLU behaves like secular fundamentalists wishing to clear-cut America of deeply entrenched cultural symbols and practices.

The US Constitution does not dictate a rigid separation of Church and State as commonly supposed; it prevents the establishment of a federal State religion, such as Anglicanism in England, which was, and is, the official state religion -- with the Prime Minister appointing bishops, etc.

As far as I know, there is nothing in the Constitution that would prevent a State (or a city for that matter) from declaring a particular religion as its official religion; the prohibition is just at the federal level.

Furthermore, the idea that views rooted in religious beliefs and values have no place in the development of government policy and laws (for example, abortion) is just wishful thinking on the part of secular fundamentalists. Tragically, this notion has been widely accepted in Canada where persons of religious belief are effectively shut out of public life and discourse, and where courts have actually ruled that the religious beliefs of parents cannot be taken into account when considering public school policies (such as indoctrinating children in homosexuality from kindergarten on).

As for the ACLU and its goal of stripping America of religious symbols and practices in public life, I believe it is mistaken. It is one thing for a government to reflect the cultural symbols and practices of an established and deeply entrenched religion; it is quite another for the government to establish this religion as the official religion of the State.

US Christianity is a broad cultural phenomenon, and having the 10 Commandments in a court house, or a Cross in a government-funded war memorial reflects nothing more than broad cultural realities, and does not represent the official sanction of a specific faith, e.g., Presbyterianism or Roman Catholicism; nor does it coerce individual citizens in any way to participate in a specific religion.

I read recently that in NYC schools, the Menorah is OK and the Muslim Crescent is OK, but a Nativity Scene is not.

For an article about the ACLU seeking to ban the cross in a public, government-funded place, go to

No comments:

"... nothing intellectually compelling or challenging.. bald assertions coupled to superstition... woefully pathetic"