Monday, June 21, 2004

 

GOP to GOD

I must say I haven't found much to agree with Andrew Sullivan of late, but always enjoy his perspective on conservative issues and his outsider status on American culture. I did find much to agree with though in his posting today titled "The Party of God
Republicanism Reinvented."

Does anyone but me remeber that the separation of Church and State was put into the Constitution to protect religion from government, not government from religion? Sigh.


The Party of God
Republicanism Reinvented

America is an exceptional country and one of the ways in which it has always been exceptional is in the role of religion. Every astute observer has noticed this and it's still true - far higher rates of church attendance than in other developed countries, constant religious references in public life, an enormous network of religious charities that do amazing work, and a perpetual churning of spiritual frenzy. If you are a person of faith, as I am, it's highly impressive. But it's also, of course, fraught with danger and occasional excess. American religion justified the enslavement of African-Americans and their emancipation; it fueled the Great Awakening of the nineteenth century, the anti-evolution Scopes trial in the early part of this century, and the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. It has propelled activists of right and left, of reaction and revolution.


More....

http://andrewsullivan.com/main_article.php?artnum=20040619

Comments:
If I could offer one slight nit-pick...

"Does anyone but me remeber that the separation of Church and State was put into the Constitution to protect religion from government, not government from religion?"

If I remember my history, the founders weren't in favor of the Anglican model whereby the King ran the Church, nor were they big fans of the Roman Catholic variation where the Church leadership bossed the various national leaders around.

My understanding is that the Founders wanted to preserve both the secular government and religious organizations independent of each other, but they did not want to impose any restriction on "religious" people from comming in and governing under the Constitution as they feel led by their personal religious convictions. Actually they were counting on people of high moral integrity and a conviction that they had to be accountable to an authority higher than humanity for the way in which they goverened.

Like I said, I think this is just a minor nit-pick, and I suspect that you were probably saying, basically, the same thing.

Later,
 
Bronson,

Welcome back! I missed your comments the last few days. I think Sullivan's point is what you brought up. That there should be a separation between church and state, but it didn't necessarily have to be some insane strict line in which you could never say "God". (Ala the Pledge case). So, shockingly I think we're in agreement.

Elephant
 
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