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quote:

Originally posted by aramike:

OK, to add my thoughts:

There IS a wall between a CHURCH and the state

(read: "ESTABLISHMENT of religion"). The purpose of this wall is to prevent any legally binding INFLUENCE of a CHURCH upon the nation.

HOWEVER, this does NOT bar a MEMBER of a church from making legal policy if so elected, nor does it separate symbols of religion from public property. To do so would be ludicrous - "thou shalt not kill" isn't a bad idea just because it comes from religion.

The purpose of this portion of the First Ammendment is to prevent the Church from having authority over the government, and therefore the people whereas the purpose of the Constitution is to rest the seat of power WITH the people.

The bottom line is that the Church is not granted legislative authority, whereas the people are, REGARDLESS of their religious viewpoints (hence: "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"). Furthermore, as the goverment is democratically REPRESENTATIVE, the majority CAN elect to display its symbols ANYWHERE IT CHOOSES, as well as using religious influence in law making.

See, too many people twist the meaning of the Constitution, and specifically, the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights doesn't really "outlaw" anything, including public display of religion.

The whole purpose of the Bill of Rights is to PROTECT the inherent rights of the MINORITY while allowing MAJORITY rule.

In other words, the majority can't simply elect itself and legislate that everyone agrees.

It has NOTHING to do with the church, really, when you think about it...

EXACTLY RIGHT!!!

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I'm curious Jag, how you can go from emphatically claiming there is no separation between Church and State to a thumbs up, beer chug and "exactly right" in response to mike's post that starts out with "There IS a wall between a CHURCH and the state". Did you have a change of heart?

This topic is far too heady and complicated to resolve in this forum, suffice it to say there are a myriad of "interpretations" of this particular amendment one of which came from Jefferson himself (as did the very words we disagree upon)

I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law regarding an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church and State. - Thomas Jefferson

I think in the end the true intent is closer to what Mike said which is that religion is a private matter and the government shouldn't meddle with it nor should we allow religion to exert undue influence over the government.

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quote:

Originally posted by Grizzle:

I think in the end the true intent is closer to what Mike said which is that religion is a private matter and the government shouldn't meddle with it

That part is right....

quote:

nor should we allow religion to exert undue influence over the government.

That part is wrong....

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My point in a nutshell:

There IS a Constitutional separation betweeen church and state.

There is NOT a Constitutional separation between religion and state.

Think: There's a reason the ammend uses the phrase "ESTABLISHMENT of religion" and not simply "religion".

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quote:

Originally posted by aramike:

My point in a nutshell:

There IS a Constitutional separation betweeen church and state.

There is NOT a Constitutional separation between religion and state.

Think: There's a reason the ammend uses the phrase "ESTABLISHMENT of religion" and not simply "religion".

First point, there is NO such separation of church and state, no such animal exists within the US constitution.

The main point of that part of the first amendment was so that the federal government could not declare a state religion, That's it, that's all. It means NOTHING else.

Jefferson in a letter to a baptist church made that statement, but in a very specific way.

A separation of church and state was created whole cloth by an activist judge.

No where in the constitution is there a wall between church and state, no where.

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quote:

Originally posted by Jaguar:

quote:

Originally posted by Grizzle:

I think in the end the true intent is closer to what Mike said which is that religion is a private matter and the government shouldn't meddle with it

That part is right....

quote:

nor should we allow religion to exert undue influence over the government.

That part is wrong....


Don't you see the potential problem here? If we allow religion to exert too much influence isn't there a danger they will attempt to legislate? Wouldn't that be in violation of the amendment??

I just don't think there is any way to uphold that amendment if we allow religion to become entwined with government.

That being said, I have no problem with individuals in the government being religious or even letting their faith influence their decisions to some degree. I just fear if we give an inch they'll take a mile and that would be very problematic.

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quote:

Originally posted by Grizzle:

quote:

Originally posted by Jaguar:

quote:

Originally posted by Grizzle:

I think in the end the true intent is closer to what Mike said which is that religion is a private matter and the government shouldn't meddle with it

That part is right....

quote:

nor should we allow religion to exert undue influence over the government.

That part is wrong....


Don't you see the potential problem here? If we allow religion to exert too much influence isn't there a danger they will attempt to legislate? Wouldn't that be in violation of the amendment??

I just don't think there is any way to uphold that amendment if we allow religion to become entwined with government.

That being said, I have no problem with individuals in the government being religious or even letting their faith influence their decisions to some degree. I just fear if we give an inch they'll take a mile and that would be very problematic.


There is NOT a problem and never has been, until a judge decided that he wished for there to be a socalled wall, that is where we end up with the ACLU, Atheists etc trying to remove god from all public places.

It is complete and total nonsense.

There is no problem with a church having members that have major political power, because they cannot declare a state religion etc, according to the first amendment.

But, we DO have that problem now, we have gone way over on the pendulum as far as religion in public places, when it comes back, which it will, it always does, we WILL be in danger of such an occurence, since one judge can ignore the true meaning of the first amendment, there is no reason that it cannot be ignored again, going the other way,

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quote:


First point, there is NO such separation of church and state, no such animal exists within the US constitution.

Wrong.

Read: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion..."

What, therefore, is "an ESTABLISHMENT of religion" if it is not a church?

And, it doesn't not say "THE" establishment, it says "AN" establishment.

As such, the ammendment CLEARLY creates a separation of church from state.

quote:


The main point of that part of the first amendment was so that the federal government could not declare a state religion, That's it, that's all. It means NOTHING else.

I disagree. If that were true, why wouldn't the ammendment simply SAY that?

Instead, it implies far more literally that laws cannot be made respecting a CHURCH, ergo, seperating the church from the state.

quote:


A separation of church and state was created whole cloth by an activist judge.

This is where, again, I'm SOOO close to agreeing with you, and I can't believe you're now disagreeing with me when you agreed with the SAME points earlier.

An activist judge did not create separation from church and state. What activist judges HAVE done was pervert that separation into a separation of RELIGION and state.

quote:


No where in the constitution is there a wall between church and state, no where.

Err, the First Ammendment.

I agree with what you're saying about how its been perverted, but there IS a wall between a CHURCH and the state.

Liberals just think that means RELIGION and state, and that is what's wrong.

quote:


Don't you see the potential problem here? If we allow religion to exert too much influence isn't there a danger they will attempt to legislate? Wouldn't that be in violation of the amendment??

If people of a certain belief system are elected they can legislate however they wish so long as it is legal. Why should a RELIGIOUS belief system not be allowed in and yet others be just fine?

quote:


I just don't think there is any way to uphold that amendment if we allow religion to become entwined with government.

Religion IS and ALWAYS HAS BEEN entwined with the government.

The Church, however, is NOT.

quote:


That being said, I have no problem with individuals in the government being religious or even letting their faith influence their decisions to some degree. I just fear if we give an inch they'll take a mile and that would be very problematic.

That's why we have a Constitution - to prevent anyone from taking "a mile".

If you want to not allow religion into government because they may go to far, then I propose we don't allow ANYONE who believes ANYTHING into government, either.

The fact is, to single out people of faith as somehow "dangerous" and to assume those who have other beliefs are somehow more trustworthy, is discriminatory and, to be honest, kind of silly.

I mean, what would you be saying if people were to say that those who believe in, say, homosexuality shouldn't be permitted to govern because they might "take a mile"? I bet you'd have a different tune to sing then...

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As I said Mike, I have no problem with people of religion being in government. I think we are on the same wavelength but communicate differently.

What I fear is the Church influencing government which is what I believe the amendment to be in place to prevent and I further believe this amendment was driven by the founders desire to prevent religious persecution in the form of government.

My whole point of contention is if we let any Church of any religion get too comfortable and bold with the idea that they can sway politics (like an amendment stating the definition of marriage or prohibiting abortion) they will be too close to the precepts that the first amendment is based upon.

The easiest way I can say it is that religion (and therefore Churches), being a *private* institution should have no place in promoting or making public policy. This is not the same as saying individuals of any particular race, creed or faith should be restricted from participating in government. Which of course is not a problem especially given the fact that nearly all (if not in fact all) presidents and politicians in our history have professed their faith in one form or another.

As to Jag's point that it hasn't and will never happen, I would never be so sure, but I can say the reason it hasn't thus far is because the people (and the amendment) thankfully have kept it in check.

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quote:

Originally posted by aramike:

quote:

First point, there is NO such separation of church and state, no such animal exists within the US constitution.

Wrong.

Read: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion..."

What, therefore, is "an ESTABLISHMENT of religion" if it is not a church?

And, it doesn't not say "THE" establishment, it says "AN" establishment.

As such, the ammendment CLEARLY creates a separation of church from state.

quote:

The main point of that part of the first amendment was so that the federal government could not declare a state religion, That's it, that's all. It means NOTHING else.

I disagree. If that were true, why wouldn't the ammendment simply SAY that?

Instead, it implies far more literally that laws cannot be made respecting a CHURCH, ergo, seperating the church from the state.

quote:

A separation of church and state was created whole cloth by an activist judge.

This is where, again, I'm SOOO close to agreeing with you, and I can't believe you're now disagreeing with me when you agreed with the SAME points earlier.

An activist judge did not create separation from church and state. What activist judges HAVE done was pervert that separation into a separation of RELIGION and state.

quote:

No where in the constitution is there a wall between church and state, no where.

Err, the First Ammendment.

I agree with what you're saying about how its been perverted, but there IS a wall between a CHURCH and the state.

Liberals just think that means RELIGION and state, and that is what's wrong.

quote:

Don't you see the potential problem here? If we allow religion to exert too much influence isn't there a danger they will attempt to legislate? Wouldn't that be in violation of the amendment??

If people of a certain belief system are elected they can legislate however they wish so long as it is legal. Why should a RELIGIOUS belief system not be allowed in and yet others be just fine?

quote:

I just don't think there is any way to uphold that amendment if we allow religion to become entwined with government.

Religion IS and ALWAYS HAS BEEN entwined with the government.

The Church, however, is NOT.

quote:

That being said, I have no problem with individuals in the government being religious or even letting their faith influence their decisions to some degree. I just fear if we give an inch they'll take a mile and that would be very problematic.

That's why we have a Constitution - to prevent anyone from taking "a mile".

If you want to not allow religion into government because they may go to far, then I propose we don't allow ANYONE who believes ANYTHING into government, either.

The fact is, to single out people of faith as somehow "dangerous" and to assume those who have other beliefs are somehow more trustworthy, is discriminatory and, to be honest, kind of silly.

I mean, what would you be saying if people were to say that those who believe in, say, homosexuality shouldn't be permitted to govern because they might "take a mile"? I bet you'd have a different tune to sing then...


THe main point of the first amendment was to make sure that the federal government could not declare a state religion, or church.

The founding fathers learned their lessons from England, and were NOT going to allow the federal government to do it here.

THAT is what the first amendment is for, to keep the government out of creating a state religion.

THAT'S IT, THAT'S ALL.

There is NO such thing as a wall between church and state, never has been, until an activist judge decided otherwise.

If you wish to call it a wall between government creating a state religion, hey, I'm with you, but it says NOTHING about a church doing political campaigning for it's favored candidate.

The amendment was for keeping the government out of religion, NOT to keep religion out of government.

Which is what it being used for, the socalled wall between church and state, which, DOES NOT EXIST...

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Jaguar ... dude ... please ... READ ... what I am saying...

quote:


THe main point of the first amendment was to make sure that the federal government could not declare a state religion, or church.

Ummm, no, the main point of the First Ammendment was to establish free speech.

Not allowing the state to create a REQUIRED state-sponsered CHURCH is, dude, SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE, and is what I've been saying all along.

What it has morphed into is a non-existant separation of RELIGION and state.

What you're essentially trying to do is say that the separation of church and state is not actually separation of church and state.

You're saying that the ammendment does not allow a state-sponsored church. I agree. And it is called SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE.

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quote:

Originally posted by LostInSpace:

Yep, these guys are crazy.

Bah, who knows who this camera man is and what his history with these guys was. It's pretty obvious they know him and I'm pretty sure he went there expecting this so he can sensationalize it.

I think Scientology is a crock, but this video dosen't really prove anything about the character of the people that follow it

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If your organization is on the up and up, then why would anyone be worried about someone bringing a video camera to a so-called free street festival? Unless of course they are all actually pod people, here to enslave mankind

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quote:


Originally posted by Wolferz:

If your organization is on the up and up, then why would anyone be worried about someone bringing a video camera to a so-called free street festival? Unless of course they are all actually pod people, here to enslave mankind


I agree. Why hide from the cameras unless you have something to hide?

And I almost want to vomit at the thought of being able to buy a permit to make something that is "public", "private" - unless that area is designated as such in advance.

Which would be like a park gazebo ... not a STREET.

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Holy crap. EVERY SINGLE TIME they were confronted with an allegation of wrongdoing by the "church", they would ask "what are YOUR crimes?"

Good job attempting the "I know you are but what am I?" defense.

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quote:

Originally posted by aramike:

Holy crap. EVERY SINGLE TIME they were confronted with an allegation of wrongdoing by the "church", they would ask "what are YOUR crimes?"

Good job attempting the "I know you are but what am I?" defense.

As I tried to say before, don't be too quick to rush to judgement. For all we know this guy has harrassed and harangued these folks in the past. I'd even go so far as to say he did since they seemed to know him and for all we know he might very well have a criminal record... It should be obvious the camera man has a bone to pick with these folks and he was just looking to add fuel to the fire.

As kooky as scientology and it's followers may be, they are not violent or evil so why bother to harrass them other than to make fun of them, and then what's the point?????

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