Founding Fathers

GEORGE WASHINGTON
GEORGE WASHINGTON

GEORGE WASHINGTON

George Washington called the American Revolution the "Great Experiment."   He also said, in his Farewell Address, "Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and morality are indispensable supports.  In vain would that any man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness."   This nation represents the pinnacle of human history, by proving a free people could govern themselves.  At the founding of America, very few people in history had ever had the right to elect their own government.   The transfer of power from one regime to the next was rarely orderly, as it always has been under the system of government set up by our Founding Fathers.   The United States was the first Republic since Rome.  Still today, a free democracy is a fragile thing. 

SAMUEL ADAMS
SAMUEL ADAMS

SAMUEL ADAMS

The greatest change in America since its founding has been the change in attitude toward religious faith.  Most Americans simply do not know what our Founding Fathers believed and how critical was religion to the founding of our nation and the freedoms we enjoy today.  They believed religious faith is indispensable to libertySamuel Adams said, "While the People are virtuous they cannot be subdued; but when once they lose their Virtue they will be ready to surrender their Liberties to the first external or internal Invader." 

THOMAS JEFFERSON
THOMAS JEFFERSON

AMERICA

"When a people's religion is destroyed . . . then not only will they let their freedom be taken from them, but often they actually hand it over themselves."  Alexis De Tocqueville.    He also said, "There is no country in the world where the Christian religion retains a greater influence over the souls of men than in America."

"A man is perfectly entitled to laugh at a thing because he happens to find it incomprehensible.  What he has no right to do is laugh at it as incomprehensible, and then criticize as if he comprehended it."  G.K. Chesterton.

"The democratic movement is the heir to the Christian movement," said Friedrich Nietzsche.    

JAMES MADISON
JAMES MADISON

JEFFERSON & MADISON

The idea of creating a Constitution derived from the Founding Father's deep familiarity with the Covenants in the Old Testament of the Christian Bible—the Hebrew Bible.   From this same source they derived their beliefs in individuality, Providence, and of an eternal reality that exists beside our temporal world. 

The principles in our founding documents regarding democracy, freedom, and rights, came from our Founding Fathers knowledge of ancient Athens.  Their ideas about separation of powers and public law originated in their studies of the Roman RepublicCicero spoke these words, "Universal law must forever reign, eternal and imperishable . . . God himself is its author, its promulgator, its enforcer. "  From England, the first Americans inherited language, parliamentary government, and social norms. 

The Declaration of Independence claims that our right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness is granted to us by God the Creator of the universe—not by men or governments.  "The Christian religion is the best religion that has ever been given to man " Thomas Jefferson.  "The belief in a God All Powerful, wise , and good, is  essential to the moral order of the World and to the happiness of man." James Madison.  He also said, "We have staked our future upon the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to sustain ourselves, according to the Ten Commandments of God."

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN
BENJAMIN FRANKLIN
JOHN ADAMS
JOHN ADAMS

THE AMERICAN EXPERIMENT

The results of the American Experiment have been profound.  The freedoms of our young nation began spreading around the world in the 19th Century.   The success of our free-market capitalism gave birth to 200 years of incredible advancements in science and inventions.  The quality of life and wealth Americans enjoy today is the direct result of our founding documents.  With only 5% of the world's population,  The United States has created more wealth than the rest of the world combined; fed more people around the world; led the world in innovations that benefit humankind; and provided more foreign aid and relief to other peoples than the rest of the entire planet. 

FOUNDING FATHERS

Our founding fathers were against bureaucracies, regulators and burdensome taxation.  Thomas Jefferson said, "If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people, under the pretense of taking care of them, they must become happy."   Samuel Adams added, "The Utopian schemes of leveling (redistribution of the wealth) . . . are arbitrary, despotic, and in our government, unconstitutional."

"From the day of our Declaration of Independence . . . the American people were bound by the laws of God, and the laws of the Gospel, which they nearly all acknowledge as the rules of their conduct."  John Quincy Adams.

"I believe in one God, the Creator of the Universe.  That He governs it by His Providence.  That He ought to be worshipped."  Benjamin Franklin.

JOHN QUINCY ADAMS
JOHN QUINCY ADAMS

ALEXIS DE TOCQUEVILLE

"I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers, and it was not there. I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her fertile fields and boundless forests, and it was not there. I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her rich mines and her vast world commerce, and it was not there. I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her public school system and her institutions of learning, and it was not there. I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution, and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good America will cease to be great."   Alexis De Tocqueville

ANDREW JACKSON
ANDREW JACKSON

THE SUPREME COURT

The courts, even the Supreme Court, were forbidden from eliding the powers of States in regard to religionThomas Jefferson put it this way, " Special provision has been made by one of the amendments to the Constitution, which expressly declares, that 'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press:' thereby guarding in the same sentence, and under the same words, the freedom of religion, of speech, and of the press: insomuch, that whatever violated either, throws down the sanctuary which covers the others, and that libels, falsehood, and defamation, equally with heresy and false religion, are withheld from the cognizance of federal tribunals."

ABRAHAM LINCOLN
ABRAHAM LINCOLN

IN GOD WE TRUST

It is no accident that "In God We Trust" is the national motto of the United States. Nor is it an accident that any witness in court or before Congress must take an oath to swear before God that they will tell the truth. “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” John Adams.


The Founding Fathers of America believed they were part of Manifest Destiny of divine design, and that America would prove to be a blessing for all of humankind. "I always consider the settlement of America with reverence and wonder, as the opening of a grand scene and design in providence, for the illumination of the ignorant and the emancipation of the slavish part of mankind all over the earth." John Adams.

WILLIAM MCKINLEY
WILLIAM MCKINLEY

A CHRISTIAN NATION

I have witnessed quite a debate in these Hub pages about whether the Christian Religion played an important part of the founding of our nation; and whether it continued to do so up to the present. There is no wall of separation in our Constitution. I have it right in front of me as I write these words. I will now present more facts for the naysayers.


THEODORE ROOSEVELT
THEODORE ROOSEVELT

LIBERTY

The first act of America's first Congress in 1774 was to ask a minister to open with prayer and to lead Congress in the reading of 4 chapters of the Bible. In 1777, Congress, facing a National shortage of `Bibles for our schools, and families, and for the public worship of God in our churches,' announced that they `desired to have a Bible printed under their care & by their encouragement' and therefore ordered 20,000 copies of the Bible. In 1782, Congress adopted (and has reaffirmed on numerous subsequent occasions) the National Seal with its Latin motto `Annuit Coeptis,' meaning `God has favored our undertakings'.

the 1783 Treaty of Paris, that officially ended the American Revolution and established America as an independent nation, begins with the appellation `In the name of the most holy and undivided Trinity.' James Madison declared that he saw the finished Constitution as a product of `the finger of that Almighty Hand." Benjamin Franklin believed that the writing of our founding documents had been `influenced, guided, and governed by that omnipotent, omnipresent, and beneficent Ruler, in Whom all inferior spirits live, and move, and have their being."

in 1789, the first Federal Congress, the Congress that framed the Bill of Rights, including the First Amendment, appropriated Federal funds to pay chaplains to pray at the opening of all sessions, a practice that has continued to this day, with Congress not only funding its congressional chaplains but also the salaries and operations of more than 4,500 military chaplains. In 1789, Congress, in the midst of framing the Bill of Rights and the First Amendment, passed the first Federal law touching education, declaring that `Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged.'

WOODROW WILSON
WOODROW WILSON

RELIGION IN AMERICA

In 1853, the United States Senate declared that the Founding Fathers 'Had no fear or jealousy of religion itself, nor did they wish to see us an irreligious people . . . they did not intend to spread over all the public authorities and the whole public action of the nation the dead and revolting spectacle of atheistical apathy.' Inside the United States Capitol the declaration `In God We Trust' is prominently displayed in both the United States House and Senate Chambers. In 1854, the United States House of Representatives declared `It [religion] must be considered as the foundation on which the whole structure rests . . . Christianity; in its general principles, is the great conservative element on which we must rely for the purity and permanence of free institutions.'

in 1870, the Federal Government made Christmas (a recognition of the birth of Christ, an event described by the U.S. Supreme Court as `acknowledged in the Western World for 20 centuries, and in this country by the people, the Executive Branch, Congress, and the courts for 2 centuries' )  and Thanksgiving as official holidays.

HERBERT HOOVER
HERBERT HOOVER

FAITH AND FREEDOM

The constitutions of each of the 50 States, either in the preamble or body, explicitly recognize or express gratitude to God.   America's first Presidential Inauguration incorporated 7 specific religious activities, including— the use of the Bible to administer the oath;  affirming the religious nature of the oath by the adding the prayer `So help me God!' to the oath; inaugural prayers offered by the President;  religious content in the inaugural address;  civil leaders calling the people to prayer or acknowledgment of God;  inaugural worship services attended en masse by Congress as an official part of congressional activities; and  clergy-led inaugural prayers, activities which have been replicated in whole or part by every subsequent President.

FRANKLIN DELANO ROOSEVELT
FRANKLIN DELANO ROOSEVELT

FREEDOM OF RELIGION

President John Adams, one of only 2 signers of the Bill of Rights and First Amendment, declared `As the safety and prosperity of nations ultimately and essentially depend on the protection and the blessing of Almighty God,  the national acknowledgment of this truth is an indispensable duty which the people owe to Him.'  President Andrew Jackson declared that the Bible `Is the rock on which our Republic rests.'  President Abraham Lincoln declared that the Bible `is the best gift God has given to men . . . But for it, we could not know right from wrong.'

HARRY S. TRUMAN
HARRY S. TRUMAN

GOD & AMERICA

President William McKinley declared that `Our faith teaches us that there is no safer reliance than upon the God of our fathers, Who has so singularly favored the American people in every national trial and Who will not forsake us so long as we obey His commandments and walk humbly in His footsteps.' President Teddy Roosevelt declared `The Decalogue and the Golden Rule must stand as the foundation of every successful effort to better either our social or our political life.' President Woodrow Wilson declared that `America was born to exemplify that devotion to the elements of righteousness which are derived from the revelations of Holy Scripture.'

President Herbert Hoover declared that `American life is built, and can alone survive, upon . . . [the] fundamental philosophy announced by the Savior nineteen centuries ago.' President Franklin D. Roosevelt not only led the Nation in a 6 minute prayer during D-Day on June 6, 1944, but he also declared that `If we will not prepare to give all that we have and all that we are to preserve Christian civilization in our land, we shall go to destruction.' President Harry S. Truman declared that `The fundamental basis of this Nation's law was given to Moses. The fundamental basis of our Bill of Rights comes from the teachings which we get from Exodus and St. Matthew, from Isaiah and St. Paul.'


DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER
DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER

FAITH AND FREEDOM

President Harry S. Truman also told a group touring Washington, DC, that `You will see, as you make your rounds, that this Nation was established by men who believed in God. . . . You will see the evidence of this deep religious faith.'    President Dwight D. Eisenhower declared that `Without God there could be no American form of government, nor an American way of life. Recognition of the Supreme Being is the first, the most basic, expression of Americanism. Thus, the founding fathers of America saw it, and thus with God's help, it will continue to be' in a declaration later repeated with approval by President Gerald Ford.   President John F. Kennedy declared that `The rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God.'

JOHN F. KENNEDY
JOHN F. KENNEDY

FREEDOM OF RELIGION

All sessions of the United States Supreme Court begin with the Court's Marshall announcing, `God save the United States and this honorable court.'  The United States Supreme Court has declared throughout the course of our Nation's history that the United States is `a Christian country', `a Christian nation', `a Christian people', `a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being', and that `we cannot read into the Bill of Rights a philosophy of hostility to religion.'   Justice John Jay, an author of the Federalist Papers and original Justice of the United States Supreme Court, urged `The most effectual means of securing the continuance of our civil and religious liberties is always to remember with reverence and gratitude the Source from which they flow.Justice James Wilson, a signer of the Constitution, declared that `Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of that law which is Divine . . . Far from being rivals or enemies, religion and law are twin sisters, friends, and mutual assistants.'

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Comments 91 comments

iamqweenbee 7 years ago

Good hub


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

THANK YOU


BrianS profile image

BrianS 7 years ago from Castelnaudary, France

Why is it that JF Kennedy is always the most memorable of all the American presidents? Very interesting hub.


RFD 7 years ago

James, Perhaps you just need a break. Your HUBS have such educational potential. I hope your "Last HUB" expression is wrong. You could combine the earlier band HUBS and the music to interest young people (fans) and educate them about freedom. Music and freedom, a natural mix. Keep it up.


R Burow profile image

R Burow 7 years ago from Florida, United States

I can not see why this hub is flagged. It is excellent. Hubpages needs you James. Won't you stay and 'fight the good fight'?


Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 7 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

Very interesting hub, I have been flagged too but a slight alteration and the COMPUTER was satisfied. Public opinion demands you stay, you have a large following and won't you miss the money??? (Joke!) Good luck! GW


John B 7 years ago

Don't stop now! I'm sure your wife needs you to have an outlet and U heard Jesse Ventura's appreciation of the "Palin exit". But then, maybe both of you will make a grand re-entrance. Just because several boxers made less than illustrious returns to action, doesn't mean it's not possible. A comeback would need to be done while you're still in your prime. You WILL be in your prime for awhile. Right?


Hxprof 7 years ago from Clearwater, Florida

Good job here presenting the FACTS. Alexis de Tocqueville had it right...I'd add only that not only will America cease to be great, it will cease to be at all.


advisor4qb profile image

advisor4qb 7 years ago from On New Footing

Well James, I imagine you will still meet your goal if you leave up your hubs long enough.

I will miss reading them.


Larry Lathrop profile image

Larry Lathrop 7 years ago from Maryland

Well done James...it's interesting that America's enemies have always known the true source of her prosperity..and just as ancient Israel became a stiff necked apostate people whom God eventually judged sending them into captivity so our once blessed land inexorably follows in kind...to our everlasting shame.

David Barton would be proud of you.

Thank you for this much needed Hub.


quietnessandtrust profile image

quietnessandtrust 7 years ago from Carbon Canyon, California

Great job again man.


ReuVera profile image

ReuVera 7 years ago from USA

What a nice hub! I am very glad to find all this information in one place. Thank you.


John Z profile image

John Z 7 years ago from Midwest

Outstanding hub brother, outstanding. There is no hotter battle raging in the world at present than the one for the very soul of the United States. And should she lose that battle it bodes ill for not only us, but the world as well. She has many enemies, but the most insidious are the ones from within her own Federal Government. The States Rights issue is very much a real issue and would be a great way to beat back some of the arrogant expansion by the Feds into personal liberties and the denuding of our nation of her belief in a Christian God. Thanks James, and I'll request permission to link this to my blog. Also, I intend to protest the flagging of a writer's hub while the hubs of the semi nude picture galleries continue to lower the bar in the hubpages community without fear of retaliation. I thought this was a writer's community. Fight the Good fight Brother.


Rochelle Frank profile image

Rochelle Frank 7 years ago from California Gold Country

Very inspiring. I'm always impressed that the founders pledged their "lives, fortunes and sacred honor" to the cause. many lost their lives and fortunes.. none lost their honor.


eovery profile image

eovery 7 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

Nice hub. The United States is bless, but are we losing those blessing by people turning their back on God?

Sorry you have to go.


Tigermadstanley profile image

Tigermadstanley 7 years ago from Canterbury, Kent, UK

James, A fascinating and well written hub. I can't see ANY problem with the quotes as they are relevant and simply add to your piece. Take care, Amanda


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

BrianS— Thank you for your comment. I think JFK and RFK were rare political figures who were capable of bringing almost everybody together in unity. I think they are revered because we have seen so little of that since.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

RFD— Music and Freedom. What an interesting idea! I love it! I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your encouraging comments.


ReuVera profile image

ReuVera 7 years ago from USA

James, I'm glad you are back.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

R Burow— Yes. I will! The Red Flag has been removed! I feel much better now! Thank you.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Gypsy Willow— I'll miss those huge checks, yes. But a man must stand on principle! :-)

The Red Flag has been removed and that carries with it a certain satisfaction for me.

Thank you for the well wishes and the words of affirmation.


SirDent 7 years ago

It is good to see you back James. I emailed you through the contact link here yesterday.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

John B— I think I am past my prime, my brother. LOL

Like a Phoenix rising from the ashes, here I am!

"In the clearing stands a boxer, and a fighter by his trade;

And he carries the reminders; of every glove that laid him down or cut him til he cried out; in his anger and his shame; I am leaving, I am leaving, but the fighter still remains

Yes he still remains"


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Hxprof— Thank you for your wise words. Tocqueville saw America as only an objective outsider can. God Bless Him. And You!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

advisor4qb— I have reached and surpassed my goals here! I am up to about 14,000 page views—which is unbelievable to me and very humbling. I am pledged to be a kinder, gentler James from now on. Thanks!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Larry Lathrop— Thank you for your very insightful commentary. And you are welcome, too.

With the awesome blessings we Americans are the recipients of, one would think we would, as a people, acknowledge the Source of our bounty with humility and Thanksgiving.

I am going to Google this David Barton and read him further. Thanks!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

quietnessandtrust— Thank you my Brother and fellow drummer! :-)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

ReuVera— I thank you for taking the time to read my Hub and you are welcome. I know it is a bit too long. But I wanted to get it all in before I move on to other topics. ;-)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

John Z— Thank you, John. I will be tickled to have you link this anywhere you like. There is a spiritual battle happening for the soul of our nation, alright. And the most prescient thing you wrote was that if lost, it will affect the whole world. The world is watching.

Thank God, the Red Flag has disappeared so "Let Freedom Ring!" (Martina McBride)

I so appreciate your encouragement, John. We must fight the good fight.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Rochelle Frank— Nice to hear from you again! Your words:

"The founders pledged their "lives, fortunes and sacred honor" to the cause. Many lost their lives and fortunes.. none lost their honor."

WOW! If only I had thought of these words!!! Outstanding comment, Rochelle. Delicious.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

eovery— Thank you. As you know, God is extremely patient. A "Great Awakening" is still possible. It is up to us.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Tigermadstanley— The "problem" has been peacefully resolved. I appreciate your readership and support. Here I stand, bloodied but unbowed. :)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

ReuVera— Thank you! I am a little embarrassed at my hissy fit. But I return with more humility than I left with. :-)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

SirDent— Thank you, my Brother. I got your email, and you helped me to understand the "spider bots." :D


Kebennett1 profile image

Kebennett1 7 years ago from San Bernardino County, California

James, this Hub is a perfect example of good writing! You had a point to make, you supported that point by facts, you added your own thoughts and opinions. It was educational, interesting, and everything I wanted to read!

Thank you. Don't let anyone run you off Hubpages! Your fans will miss you!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

kebennett1— Why, thank you so much. I humbly accept your compliments. If it is everything you say it is; then it is everything I hoped it would be! :-)


ReuVera profile image

ReuVera 7 years ago from USA

James, you should not feel embarrassed of other stuff.....you know what I mean. Anyone would get frustrated under those circumstances. The important thing that you are back, and this is great. All's well that ends well.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

ReuVera— Thanks. I am locked and loaded and ready to rock and roll. Let's see . . . who shall I select as my next victim? :-)


ReuVera profile image

ReuVera 7 years ago from USA

LOL Great way to make your point!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

ReuVera— Thanks so much for your support. It feels good to be appreciated.


Lisbet 7 years ago

Thank you. Concise and entirely flowing. I am going to share it with my 2 high school kids in North Florida. I just watched the Adams Chronicles produced by PBS which provided me visual context to accompany/ prepare me for reading your excellent, healthy blog. I particularly liked the quote early on that we can laugh at the incomprehensible, but do not have the right to do so as though we comprehend....or something like that. I'm approaching Alaska by sea. What an awesome country. Thank you. I look forward to your return from "blog break" please. Merci, Lisbet


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Lisbet— Thank you for your readership and affirmation. I will be honored to have this used as a teaching tool. More than I could have hoped for. Thanks you!

I have not been to Alaska, but my friends who have, gave me glowing reports. Enjoy your trip.

G.K. Chesterton was a quote machine! You are welcome.


tony0724 profile image

tony0724 7 years ago from san diego calif

Is this the hub that got flagged ? No wonder . It Is to fact based and flies In the face of the separation of church and staters . Thank you James for another Informative hub !


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

tony0724— Yes, this is the one. I so appreciate your encouragement as I know it is heartfelt and it comes from a learned perspective.


Underwater man 7 years ago

James i lovethis hub Keep this going.This is what they don't teach in schools any more.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Underwater man— Thank you so very much. I appreciate your comments.


Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 7 years ago from Moundsville, WV

James, It seems as time goes by and I study the founders and the great people who followed in their footsteps my mind always goes back to George Washington.

After The Revolutionary War, Washington had such support both among many of the founders and the Revolutionary Army he had the opportunity to become a monarch. Washington said he did not want another king be it he or anyone else.

I don't know of anyone else in the History of The World who has been in a similar position and then took such a principled stand.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Tom Whitworth— I believe you are right, sir. I think George does hold that noble distinction. Amazing. Washington is my favorite American ever. If only we had leaders like him today.

Thank you for visiting. This is one of my Hubs I really love. I appreciate your comments.


linda-patriot profile image

linda-patriot 6 years ago

GAreat hub James, what does it mean if your hub gets flagged?


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

linda-patriot— In this case it meant excessive quotations (not enough original material). Then they depress the score of the Hub as a penalty. Thank you for visiting and commenting.


Kendall H. profile image

Kendall H. 6 years ago from Northern CA

Thank you so much for the great hub! I wish more people knew the truth about American history and the founding of the government. No matter how I try and cannot begin to understand how people can call themselves proud Americans and yet at the same time want to change the foundation that we were founded upon.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Kendall H. — You are surely welcome! I am with you. I yearn for kids today to understand what they have been given by our forefathers. I don't think dead white guys are multi-cultural enough for the Teacher's Union. All they can think about are our country's failures. We'd best keep the foundation we've got. It is the best in history and much emulated around the world.

Your comments show an astute intelligence. Glad to have you in HubPages. Thank you.


50 Caliber profile image

50 Caliber 6 years ago from Arizona

James, I was surprised to the flagging, but I now understand, I was flagged on a tribute to our Marines, I didn't care, I've found a way to beat that system the next time I do it and intend on using it. A photo presentation using print screen and pasting in paint. For a worthy cause such as this hub, why not? Thank you for a view that I'm researching at present. Peace 50


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

50 Caliber— Too many quotes, I guess. The thing was, I had been barraged with Hub Comments similar to that link you sent me to, so I wanted to directly quote. I haven't gotten many Hub Comments like that since. :D

You have an interesting idea there. I'm not sure I understand it. Thank you for visiting and you are welcome.


CMerritt profile image

CMerritt 5 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

James, this is one of my favorite parts of US History that I LOVE to study. I really think so many young folks today have no idea how signifcant our Heritage is, and how it is being lost and purposely left out and misguided by our public schools.

I hate to keep bringing this up, but you have a book that you need to write one of these days.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

CMerritt— I completely agree with your comments. I am in the midst of writing my first book. It is about the social and cultural history of the United States during my lifetime (1955-2010).

Thank you for encouraging and inspiring me.


Chasuk 5 years ago

I finally have some time to respond to this. Note that I will do so without once calling you a hateful little man.

You have admitted elsewhere that "the Constitution does not enshrine a national religion," yet that is what hubs like this one try to imply. Specifically, it tries to convince the uncareful reader that the Constitution enshrined the United States as a Christian nation.

You make this implication fairly explicit when you write:

"I have a Hub I would be honored if you would read that features quotes from several Supreme Courts prior to the 1962-1963 Court; and quotes from every top-tier US President from Washington to JFK, that makes the claim America IS a Christian nation."

America is not a Christian nation unless the Constitution enshrines it as such. Any other claim is meaningless. The best that can be claimed is that America is a nation which has been dominantly populated -- historically and now -- by Christians. Such a claim is so obvious that it doesn't need to be made.

Let's analyze your evidence.

George Washington: He spoke of "Religion and morality," not Christianity.

Washington wrote, "I am persuaded, you will permit me to observe that the path of true piety is so plain as to require but little political direction. To this consideration we ought to ascribe the absence of any regulation, respecting religion, from the Magna-Charta of our country."

http://www.positiveatheism.org/hist/quotes/washing...

Samuel Adams: The quote you provided praises virtue, not religious faith.

Alexis De Tocqueville: He wasn't a Founding Father. He made an observation regarding the influence of Christianity in America. Nothing more can be inferred.

G.K. Chesterton: He wasn't a Founding Father. I agree with the quote you provided from him, but it has nothing to do with the system of government set up by our Founding Fathers.

Friedrich Nietzsche: Taken in context, Nietzsche was speaking of the inevitability of democracy (as a consequence of the "Christian movement"). He wasn't a Founding Father. I am sure you are ware that Nietzsche was an atheist.

Neither Jefferson nor Madison were Christians in any sense that would be commonly accepted today, and Jefferson emphatically objected to enshrining Christianity. Jefferson and Madison are adequately covered here:

http://hubpages.com/politics/The-United-States-IS-...

The Declaration of Independence was not the Constitution.

John Quincy Adams: He was a Founding Father and a Christian. The quote you provide from him does seem to support your position.

John Adams (the father of John Quincy) was pious when it served him. You do provide a quote which supports your claim, but I counter it with this one:

"Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, and which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind."

http://www.positiveatheism.org/hist/quotes/adams.h...

Benjamin Franklin was also pious when it suited him.

Don't forget that he wrote these words:

"I have found Christian dogma unintelligible. Early in life, I absenteed myself from Christian assemblies."

And:

"The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason."

Andrew Jackson wasn't a Founding Father. He refused to proclaim a national day of fasting and prayer, stating:

"I could not do otherwise without transcending the limits prescribed by the Constitution for the President and without feeling that I might in some degree disturb the security which religion nowadays enjoys in this country in its complete separation from the political concerns of the General Government."

Abraham Lincoln was not a Founding Father. He was sometimes a believer, sometimes not.

He wrote:

"What is to be, will be, and no prayers of ours can arrest the decree."

http://www.positiveatheism.org/hist/quotes/lincoln...

That Congress commissioned the printing of bible is fiction.

You provide many other quotations, most of which are entirely irrelevant or dated far after the time of the Founding Fathers.

I could continue dissecting the rest of your hub, but I don't really think that it is necessary.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— You wrote that this Hub "tries to convince the uncareful reader that the Constitution enshrined the United States as a Christian nation"

That is certainly not my intention, kind sir. The Constitution does no such thing. The core of my Hub is what the word "nation" means. It means, in its essence, a "group of people." This Hub intends to show that the People of America at its founding and ever since have been a "Christian People" and therefore a "Christian Nation," in the eyes of its citizens and its founders and its leaders ever since—until Barack Obama.

We can all agree that individual belief is not mandated by law. This would not be in accordance with the "negative government" put into place by our Founding Fathers.

Admitedly, America has had a more "positive government" since FDR, and then even more so since LBJ. But this positiveness does not extend to individual beliefs regarding religion, only to political correctness and its adjuncts.

In a negative government, you are correct that citizens are not forced to believe in the Christian Faith. But they are free; free to do as they please. For instance, for hundreds of years they were free to put a creche on the village green, pray in school, read the Bible in school, hold group prayers at public events, etc. It is this freedom that has been eroded by so called "progressives." Religious expression in public has been oppressed by the government since the 1960s, and ever increasingly so. People have never been forced to believe anything in the United States.

Your comments are excellent and well taken. Thank you.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— As for your contention "That Congress commissioned the printing of bible is fiction," the facts are these:

In 1777, Congress, facing a national shortage of “Bibles for our schools, and families, and for the public worship of God in our churches,”(1) announced that they “desired to have a Bible printed under their care and by their encouragement”(2) and therefore ordered 20,000 copies of the Bible to be imported “into the different ports of the States of the Union.” (3)

(1)Letters of the Delegates to the Continental Congress, Vol. VII, p. 311, n1.

(2) Letters of the Delegates to the Continental Congress, Vol. VII, p. 311, “Committee on Publishing a Bible to Sundry Philadelphia Printers,” on July 7, 1777.

(3) Journals of the Continental Congress Vol. VIII, p. 734, September 11, 1777.


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: Yes, the United States is historically Christian. Did Obama's words change that? Obama wasn't trying to alter history or counter obvious fact. He was making the same assertion that you and I acknowledge as truth, that the Constitution does not enshrine a national religion.

In our divided society, this was an important point to make, and a courageous one. He knew that his words would be misrepresented and used against him.

You can still pray an schools, but you can't be compelled to pray by teachers. You can still read your Bible in school, but it can't be compelled. This is in greater accordance with "negative government," not less.

Truthfully, I'm vehemently opposed to my taxes paying for nativity scenes. However, considering that Andrew Jackson over 150 years ago believed that religion should remain completely separate from the political concerns of the "General Government," perhaps I should be.

Concerning Congress commissioning the printing of a bible:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHhYfkDZjp0&feature...

http://www.liarsforjesus.com/pages/1page1.htm

My apologies for the domain name in the second link; it is unnecessary nastiness.


Chasuk 5 years ago

Addendum: Insert the word "not" between "I'm" and "vehemently."

I hate typos. >.<

By the way, thank you, James, for maintaining this dialogue like a gentleman.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— What Obama said contradicted every United States President before him and as a well educated man he knew full well that is what he was doing. You may recall he also implied in a speech that ignorant country rubes "cling to God and guns." Unlike sophisticated elites as himself who have moved beyond such backwardness. He was saying that America has moved beyond its Christian past now. The message was received loud and clear.

I am sure you are aware that children in public schools prayed together and studied the Bible in class, read it quietly and aloud, and teachers read it aloud to students for 360 years. If this had not been the case, there would have been no need for the ACLU—communist Atheists—to bring this issue to the Supreme Court in the 1960s. The Court banned the Bible from school. This ruling implies that the members of the Court in 1962 saw in the Constitution something that no member of the Court or hardly any other American citizen ever saw in it: that God should be banned from the schools. 80 percent of the American People opposed the ruling. It is fine to read the Communist Manifesto or Heather has two mommonies but the Bible is banned. This sends a clear message to children as to what their government (authority) approves of and does not approve of. Marx yes; God no.

I do not think people in small towns across America needed New York Atheist Communists (who claim to be Jews) to tell them what they cannot read.

I did view the video and read the link you provided. She makes a good case for her point of view. I supplied a whole page worth of quotes, ranging over 200 years. I see a lot of great Americans in this article. I am not sure what this woman has done for her country but I doubt her accomplishments match up.


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: What Obama said did NOT contradict "every United States President before him."

It didn't contradict Jefferson, as this excerpt from his autobiography (discussing the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom) makes clear:

"The bill for establishing religious freedom, the principles of which had, to a certain degree, been enacted before, I had drawn in all the latitude of reason & right. It still met with opposition; but, with some mutilations in the preamble, it was finally passed; and a singular proposition proved that it’s protection of opinion was meant to be universal. Where the preamble declares that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed, by inserting the word “Jesus Christ,” so that it should read “a departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion.” The insertion was rejected by a great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of it’s protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mahometan, the Hindoo, and infidel of every denomination."

Note particularly his final sentence.

It didn't contradict John Adams, who signed the Treaty of Tripoli.

At least four of the signatories ratifying the Treaty of Tripoli were Founding Fathers -- William Blount, John Langdon, Alexander Martin, and Richard Stockton -- which I believe is relevant, considering the topic of this hub.

Did Obama say that ignorant country rubes "cling to God and guns?" Arguably, yes, and arguably, no. He was speaking in San Francisco, talking about (quoted directly from the speech), "the places where people feel most cynical about government."

He is what he said, verbatim, in context:

"But the truth is, is that, our challenge is to get people persuaded that we can make progress when there’s not evidence of that in their daily lives. You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."

Your contention that, "He was saying that America has moved beyond its Christian past now," doesn't hold up. You are conflating two speeches about two different subjects, made over two years apart.

The Bible has not been banned from school. Teachers can no longer compel students to read it, this is true. In what way is that a bad thing? This Supreme Court decision is strictly in adherence with negative government, which you advocate. The Supreme Court didn't tell "people in small towns across America" what they cannot read; they gave young men and women the freedom to choose their own reading material. If they want to read the Bible, they can read it, but they can't be compelled to read it.

You provided a whole page of quotes, but few of them in any way substantiated your claim, as I documented in my rebuttal. You indicated that my rebuttal was "excellent and well taken." Was that just to mollify me, or did you mean it?

Lastly, if Chris Rodda "makes a good case for her point of view," then why the ad hominem attack?


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— No, when I indicated that your rebuttal was excellent and well taken I meant just that. Even though I do not agree with your point of view in regards to our nation's true history, I can still appreciate a well thought out, well presented argument.

Ms. Rodda made a good case. I didn't think I attacked her by pointing out that the quotes on this page from Washington to Kennedy are by people who have contributed more to America than she has—and far more than I have, for that matter.

I am not aware that students were ever compelled to read the Bible, any more than they might have been "compelled" to read Huckleberry Finn, the Communist Manifesto, Origin of the Species, etc. etc.

Teachers have been suspended from public schools for simply having a Bible on their desks. That is hardly freedom.

Thank you for providing President Obama's full quote. Bitter people cling to God as a way to explain their frustrations. Nice.

I am well aware that Thomas Jefferson, and a couple of other Founding Fathers, were caught up in the fad of Deism in the 1780s. I recently read a prominent historian who said that if the Constitution had been written 10 years earlier or later, it probably would have mentioned the Christian God by name.

Of course, what with the Founding Fathers experience with the Church of England, they did not want the federal Congress to force a certain denomination on the consciences of citizens. After all, in England it was a crime to miss church on Sunday, and tithing was forced on people by the government. We do not want that in America. That is, however, a long way from banishing God from the public square altogether, which is the road we have been on since the 1960s. As my quotes above prove, this was not the intent of the Founders of this great nation—or of 200 years of American leaders since.


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: Until the Supreme Court forbade it, the Abington School District of Pennsylvania required -- by statute -- that ten verses of the Bible be read at the start of each school day. The verses were read over the intercom by students. In schools without intercoms, they were read in individual classrooms by students, or by the home-room teacher.

As far as I am aware, no students in the United States have ever had to read or listen to doses of Huckleberry Finn, the Communist Manifesto, or the Origin of the Species as part of a mandated morning ritual.

Full details of the Supreme Court decision can be found here:

http://supreme.justia.com/us/374/203/case.html

Further, the simple fact is that both prayer and the reading of the Bible are still allowed in school, and the Supreme Court rulings have not changed that.

The US Dept of Education makes that quite emphatic here:

http://www2.ed.gov/policy/gen/guid/religionandscho...

Lastly, as you are well aware, at least five of your quotes were not produced by our Founders, so they reveal nothing at all of our Founders intent. Actually, a full THIRTEEN of your quotes are not by Founders, and that doesn't include the arguably relevant quotes by Supreme Court justices.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— Thank you for your comments. In your first link, it says this: "Any child shall be excused from such Bible reading, or attending such Bible reading, upon the written request of his parent or guardian."

Surely you know that this had been done in American schools for over 300 years, the last nearly 200 years by people who held the very same Constitution in their hands we hold today. What demonstrable harm was done to American children during these centuries?

Your second link includes this passage: "The First Amendment thus establishes certain limits on the conduct of public school officials as it relates to religious activity, including prayer."

Surely, as astute as you are, you know this is false. The First Amendment only prohibits the free exercise of religion when it comes to the CONGRESS establishing a ntaional religion—not a school teacher reading the Bible or a coach leading his football team in prayer.

The 1962 Supreme Court case Engel v. Vitale involved a lawsuit filed against a New York school by an Atheists of Jewish descenet, Steven Engel, who was offended by this prayer: "Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon Thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers and our country. Amen." Engel was a founding member of the New York chapter of the ACLU.

It is rare for any Supreme Court decision to not cite previous cases upon which its decisions are based. There were no citations in this case. The decision was unprecedented; overturning hundreds of years of accepted American tradition. Prior to Engel v. Vitale no court had ever struck down any prayer of any form, anywhere in the nation.


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: True, the children could be excused from the Bible reading, if they wished to be ostracized. Remember, for these children, school attendance was involuntary. Ostracism by your peers is not only coercive, but damaging.

The Fourteenth Amendment -- specifically the Equal Protection Clause -- extended the scope of the Bill of Rights to include the states. That has been the dominant (if not uncontroversial) interpretation of the Supreme Court for 143 years. In other words, it has been their interpretation for over 60% of the history of this country.

Engel v. Vitale might indeed have set a precedent, but I believe it was a good one. Our children now live in a freer place than their ancestors. Harm to liberty is often far less obvious, but that doesn't mean that our Supreme Court should have ignored it, for lack of being easily demonstrable.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— I fully understand how the 14th Amendment has been "used" to force social engineering upon the American public. But I am sure you know what the 14th Amendment was really for in 1868. You can read my short Hub about this development, its protagonists and their self-stated motivations here:

http://hubpages.com/politics/Supreme-Court-Progres

Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart voted against the ruling in Engel and published this dissent:

"A local school board in New York has provided that those pupils who wish to do so may join in a brief prayer at the beginning of each school day, acknowledging their dependence upon God and asking His blessing upon them and upon their parents, their teachers, and their country. The Court today decides that, in permitting this brief nondenominational prayer, the school board has violated the Constitution of the United States. I think this decision is wrong.

"The Court does not hold, nor could it, that New York have interfered with the free exercise of anybody's religion. For the state courts have made clear that those who object to reciting the prayer must be entirely free of any compulsion to do so, including any "embarrassments and pressures." But the Court says that, in permitting school children to say this simple prayer, the New York authorities have established "an official religion."

"With all respect, I think the Court has misapplied a great constitutional principle. I cannot see how an "official religion" is established by letting those who want to say a prayer say it. On the contrary, I think that to deny the wish of these school children to join in reciting this prayer is to deny them the opportunity of sharing in the spiritual heritage of our Nation. . .

"For we deal here not with the establishment of a state church, which would, of course, be constitutionally impermissible, but with whether school children who want to begin their day by joining in prayer must be prohibited from doing so. Moreover, I think that the Court's task, in this as in all areas of constitutional adjudication is not responsibly aided by the uncritical invocation of metaphors like the "wall of separation," a phrase nowhere to be found in the Constitution. What is relevant to the issue here is . . . the religious traditions of our people, reflected in countless practices of the institutions and officials of our government.

"At the opening of each day's Session of this Court we stand, while one of our officials invokes the protection of God. Since the days of John Marshall, our Crier has said, "God save the United States and this Honorable Court." Both the Senate and the House of Representatives open their daily Sessions with prayer. Each of our Presidents, from George Washington to John F. Kennedy, has, upon assuming his Office, asked the protection and help of God.

"The Court today says that the state and federal governments are without constitutional power to prescribe any particular form of words to be recited by any group of the American people on any subject touching religion. One of the stanzas of "The Star-Spangled Banner" made our National Anthem by Act of Congress in 1931 contains these verses:

Blest with victory and peace, may the heaven rescued land

Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation,

Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just.

And this is our motto "In God is our Trust."

"In 1954, Congress added a phrase to the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag so that it now contains the words "one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." In 1952, Congress enacted legislation calling upon the President each year to proclaim a National Day of Prayer. Since 1865, the words "IN GOD WE TRUST" have been impressed on our coins.

"Countless similar examples could be listed, but there is no need to belabor the obvious. It was all summed up by this Court just ten years ago in a single sentence: "We are a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being." Zorach v. Clauson, 343 U.S. 306, 313.'


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: Yes, I know what the Fourteenth Amendment was 'really for" in 1868. However, I'm sorry to say, I'm not sure that you do.

The Fourteenth Amendment was one of three amendments which extended constitutional guarantees to blacks. In the process, it fixed an oversight in the Bill of Rights.

What was the oversight? The Bill of Rights was designed to prevent the federal government from abusing US citizens. Unfortunately, it did nothing to prevent the states from those same abuses. The Fourteenth Amendment corrected this in the following emphatic language from Section I:

"No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

Section I is now known as the Equal Protection Clause.

You accuse the Supreme Court of social engineering. I agree with you. One of the inescapable consequences of passing edicts is the changing of public opinion. The Bill of Rights was social engineering, too.

Your hub on Supreme Court progressives didn't demonstrate what you think it did. You provide a single quote in the entire hub. That quote was from Oliver Wendell Holmes, and it concerned eugenics. Was that supposed to be your "self-stated" proof of a social engineering agenda? Your many unsubstantiated assertions do not replace evidence.

Concerning Engel v. Vitale:

Any objections that sole dissenter Justice Stewart makes are addressed in the majority opinion. Stewart invokes the dictum of Justice William Orville Douglas from Zorach v. Clauson, 343 U.S. 306, 313 (1952). As Stewart knew, dictum are not an official part of a legal opinion, and are not binding. Opinions written by the Supreme Court are multi-part. First is "the holding of the case," which is the court's ruling. Second is the ratio decidendi, which is the rational -- the principles of law -- on which the court based its decision. Lastly is the "obiter dictum," from which Stewart quoted Douglas's words, ""We are a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being." Those words aren't factual today, and they weren't factual in 1952.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— In the 1963 Supreme Court case Abington School District v. Schempp (consolidated with the Murray v. Curlett lawsuit brought by famous Atheist (and Communist) Madalyn Murray O'Hair) the court banned the Bible and the Lord's Prayer from public schools. Justice Hugo Black felt that if a student heard the Bible read in school this was the same thing as the United States Congress establishing a compulsory national religion, even though students were free to leave the room if the Bible offended them. The Bible had been read in schools since there had been schools in America.

Justice William Brennan, another Atheist, equated the reading of the Bible to a "substantive evil" and wrote: "There are persons in every community. . . to whom any version of the Judeo-Christian Bible is offensive." Justice Brennan did note that the Bible had always been a part of American education.

Justice Potter Stewart published these words as part of his dissent: "If religious exercises are held to be an impermissible activity in schools, religion is placed in an artificial and state-created disadvantage.... And a refusal to permit religious exercises thus is seen, not as the realization of state neutrality, but rather as the establishment of a religion of secularism, or at least, as governmental support of the beliefs of those who think that religious exercises should be conducted only in private."

The foundation of all worldviews centers around the questions "Who is man?" and "Who is God?" The Christian faith and secular humanism answer these two questions in opposition to each other.

Secular humanism is a bedfellow with socialism and communism. Karl Marx said, "Communism is naturalized humanism." A people who no longer have faith in God, but place their hope in social progress achieved through the power of the state; a populace devoid of spirituality, and free from religious responsibility; is ripe for the pickings by those who would impose a communist, atheist, totalitarian state.

The Supreme Court has steadily advanced the rights of individuals in regard to non-religious expression; while steadily curtailing the rights of individuals in regard to expression of their Christian faith. The Court has decided that it is a grave harm to godless individuals to hear or see expressions of the Christian faith.

As secular humanism has posted its successes at diminishing the influence of the Christian faith, the inevitable cultural decline has progressed. By denying Christian faith a seat at the table of American policy and affairs, it is successfully marginalized and its importance denied. Hostility to the Christian faith has predictably led to a great lowering of standards of personal conduct, civility, self-restraint, and the work ethic; and an explosion of crime, corruption, and the degeneration of our culture. This puts democracy at risk.

As the father of the New Left, Herbert Marcuse, put it, the plan is:

"Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left."


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: You sabotage the integrity of your argument by presenting half-truths. You write, "the court banned the Bible and the Lord's Prayer from public schools." This simply isn't true, as you tacitly acknowledge in your next sentence: "Justice Hugo Black felt that if a student HEARD THE BIBLE READ [emphasis mine] in school this was the same thing as the United States Congress establishing a compulsory national religion, even though students were free to leave the room if the Bible offended them." Justice Black was correct, unless you discount entirely the effects of coercion and intimidation on children.

I don't understand the relevance of the rest of your comment, but none of it supports your contention "that the People of America at its founding and ever since have been a 'Christian People' and therefore a 'Christian Nation,' in the eyes of its citizens and its founders and its leaders."

For the record, I provisionally agree with your contention, while disagreeing that you have provided sound -- or even always pertinent -- evidence to support it.

The implicit assumption underlying this hub is that the disruption of the Christian-centric status quo is a bad thing. You make this clear when you invoke the specter of "a communist, atheist, totalitarian state" which is somehow the consequence of the diminishing influence of the Christian faith.

You might want to revise your opinion: most of the happiest, most prosperous nations on earth are also the most humanist and atheistic.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/114211/Alabamians-Irani...


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— The ACLU views Free Speech and the Free Exercise of Religion as enemies of their agenda for America. In public schools, children have had Valentine cards confiscated that mentioned God; wall tiles for a fundraiser were removed because two said "God Bless" on them; clergymen have been banned from school property; students were prohibited from praying at graduation; football teams cannot pray together before a game; invocations, benedictions banned.

With a budget of $50 billion dollars a year, the ACLU files suit after suit to financially intimidation municipalities. The ACLU has filed lawsuits against public schools over gospel concerts; a teacher who taught Bible lessons for 30 years off school property; teachers meeting on their own time to pray together; and prayer at a high school baseball game—which they called "Immoral" and asked the judge to send school officials to jail.

The ACLU successfully sued Catholic Charities, demanding that their employee health insurance pay for contraceptives, in direct violation of Catholic doctrine. They sued the Salvation Army to force them to hire non-Christians. They sued Yeshiva University to demand they allow two lesbians live together in student housing against their Jewish Faith. They sued the Virginia Military Institute to stop cadets from saying Grace before their meals.

Thank you for that link; it is quite interesting.

Obviously, you think it is OK for students to be indoctrinated with Secular Humanism and Socialism—which they are. And the Supreme Court has ruled that Secular Humanism IS a religion, yes?

You wrote: "The implicit assumption underlying this hub is that the disruption of the Christian-centric status quo is a bad thing."

Well yes. By what measure has it been a good thing?

Is it not true that since Spiritual darkness fell over the public schools in the early 1960s every bad social pathology has increased by 500 to 1000 percent? I won't try to make a complete list but off the top of my head if you campare 1960 with 2010 do you not see at least a quadrupling of: murder, rape, assault, robbery, petty theft, fraud, corruption, corporate crime, lying, babies killed in the womb, child abuse, spousal abuse, divorce, illegitimate children, broken homes, bad manners, poor civility, public profanity, promiscuity, adultery, pornography, and sexual deviancy? Along with poor academic results in spite of spending far more on education? Metal detectors and armed guards in schools; bad behavior among students at school; gang warfare; gated communities; burglar alarms?


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: The ACLU doesn't have a budget of $50 billion dollars a year, or anywhere near that. It publishes its financials annually.

Here are its financials from 2010 (in PDF form):

http://www.aclu.org/files/pdfs/about/fy2010_aclu_f...

Due to market conditions, The ACLU recently lost its biggest donor -- who donated $20 dollars in 2009 -- and this loss creates a shortfall of nearly 25% of their entire budget.

The ACLU defends all of our rights, not just the few.

The ACLU defends Christian athletes:

http://www2.wsls.com/news/2011/feb/25/aclu-virgini...

The ACLU defends Christian Ministry for the Homeless

http://aclu-md.org/aPress/Press2009/themeetinggrou...

The ACLU defends the right of a Pentecostal minister to Preach In Prison:

http://www.aclu.org/religion-belief/ordained-pente...

The ACLU defends the First Baptist church of Ferndale http://www.aclu.org/religion-belief/ordained-pente...

The ACLU defends student preachers:

http://www.aclu.org/religion-belief/aclu-tn-succes...

The ACLU fights to end censorship of religious material:

http://www.aclu.org/prisoners-rights/aclu-seeks-en...

I could easily produce dozens of further examples refuting your assertion that, "the ACLU views Free Speech and the Free Exercise of Religion as enemies of their agenda for America." In fact, you have just provided me strong motivation to write a hub on the subject.

Has the supreme Court rules that secular humanism is a religion? No, it has not. In Torcaso v. Watkins, Justice Black referred to secular humanism as a religion in a footnote -- i.e., in the obiter dictum -- which is not binding and not part of the Court's ruling. In United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Peloza v. Capistrano School District, the Court of Appeals wrote, "We reject this claim because neither the Supreme Court, nor this circuit, has ever held that evolutionism or Secular Humanism are 'religions' for Establishment Clause purposes."

I obviously disagree that disruption of the Christian-centric status quo is a bad thing. I've presented evidence that it is, in fact, a good thing. Yes, crime has increased, but not steadily. From 1993, it has hugely declined. Some argue that legalized abortion is responsible for the drop. Whatever the cause of the increase, and whatever the cause of the decrease, remember that correlation does not imply causation. Students continue to pray and continue to read their Bible, arguably in greater numbers than they ever have before.


Chasuk 5 years ago

Whoops.

"who donated $20 dollars in 2009" == "who donated $20 million in 2009"


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— I was wrong about the annual budget of the ACLU by a long ways. Thank you for the correction. I am not sure where I got that number. The $50B might represent the total spent by the ACLU over the years in its anti-Christian activities. It probably came from this book:

http://www.amazon.com/ACLU-vs-America-Exposing-Red...

I appreciate the links you provided, which show that the ACLU does sometimes sue for conservative purposes. Of course, this is for show. The founder of the ACLU, Roger Baldwin, explained his strategy to dupe the American Public with these words: "We want also to look like patriots in everything we do. We want to get a good lot of flags, talk a good deal about the Constitution and what our forefathers wanted to make of this country." He also developed the strategy of defending a few ultra conservative nuts here and there such as Nazis or the KKK to create the appearance of non-partisanship.

As for the true goals of the ACLU, Roger Baldwin said these words: "We are for Socialism, disarmament, and ultimately for abolishing the state itself. We seek the social ownership of property, the abolition of the propertied class, and the sole control of those who produce wealth. Communism is the goal."

The ACLU has been suing the Boy Scouts since 1980—that first case went on for 17 years—at enormous expense to the Scouts. The root issue is Freedom of Association in the United States Constitution. The ACLU relies on this very Right to exclude from leadership in their organization those who disagree with their views. To again quote Roger Baldwin: "The ACLU is a private organization . . . like a church. You don't take nonbelievers into the church. We are a church."

In Torkoso v. Watkins (1961), the Supreme Court said that "among religions ... are Buddhism ... and secular humanism," etc.

Humanism has its own organized belief system, publications and preachers. Like other religions, it also has a goal: the supplanting of all other religions with its own. It also receives a religious tax exemption. It even calls itself a religion. (The Humanist, Sept. 1984) The title of an article in The Humanist, Feb. 1983, for example, describes the movement as "A Religion for a New Age." In the article, teachers are charged with the role of "preachers ... ministers of another sort."


Chasuk 5 years ago

At least one of the Baldwin quotes you provided is of dubious provenance. I know someone who owns the "Harvard Class Book of 1935" in which the infamous "We are for Socialism" line supposedly appears, and he assures me that it isn't there. But maybe it is; I have never seen the book, so I can't say for sure. However, assuming that Baldwin did say it, so what? Yes, he was one of the founders of the ACLU, but organizations are more than the intentions of their founders.

I don't necessarily agree with everything that the ACLU has defended, nor everything that they do. I think they are foolish and hypocritical for going after the Boy Scouts. Still, I support them in the majority of their cases.

As for your Torcaso v. Watkins assertion, to quote myself, "Justice Black referred to secular humanism as a religion in a footnote -- i.e., in the obiter dictum -- which is not binding and not part of the Court's ruling."

I would consider myself a humanist, but not a Humanist. There are secular humanists and religious humanists. I have personally known many -- hundreds -- of Christian humanists. Most humanists are unaware of the label, in the same way that one can be an omnivore for all of one's life without knowing what "omnivore" means. Few humanists are members of Humanist organizations.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— Thank you for these interesting comments.

I would just add food for thought that sometimes the ideas of idealists simply have horrible unforeseen consequences. Since this spiritual darkness has descended across America, not only have all of these pathologies infested our people that I have listed for you, but maybe up to 30 percent of American adults are on anti-depressants; plastic surgery runs rampant at a cost of much treasury (that could go to the poor); the suicide rate is very high; all sorts of new neuroses have been named to explain the state of the American psyche. Something is clearly wrong with the soul of the nation and its people. I can trace all of this easily to the mid-sixties when perhaps 250,000 Secular Humanists began to impose their will on hundreds of millions of Americans.

95 percent of all cervical cancer in women is the result of STDs. 19 million persons are infected with a STD each year in America—4 million of them teenagers. 65 million Americans have a contagious Sexually Transmitted Disease right now. 25 percent of all American adults have a lifelong incurable STD.

The number of Americans infected with STDs has exploded by the astonishing figure of 900 percent since the the Sixties. Add to those tragic numbers the promotion of homosexuality by Social Liberals—and the resultant health problems directly imperiling the general population via AIDS.

Suffice it to say that if people are taught that they are nothing more than animals; there is no God observing what they do in the darkness; there is no judgment day at which to answer for ones conduct: all boundaries to sexual behavior have melted away. Anything goes. Sex has been cheapened and rendered meaningless. Widespread, casual, recreational sex is epidemic among our youth. They call it "hooking up." Sexual activity and sexually transmitted diseases are now present in huge numbers of children not yet even in high school.

If this is the future secular humanists thought they would get when they fought against Christ, then damn them. If it is not, then they at least ought to admit how wrong they were and apologize.


Chasuk 5 years ago

Sorry, James, maybe you can trace plastic surgery and cervical cancer to a few wise supreme Court decisions, but the facts can't.

As many Christians get STDs as secular humanists, and these Christians believe that God observes them in the darkness. Your claim doesn't compute, and you know it.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— No, I don't know it. It computes the way I see it. I understand it is hard for a supporter of certain views to admit the damage done by their ideals. Hey, Leftist Americans still defended Joe Stalin up into the 1980s. Because to do otherwise would have meant to admit the truth of the consequences of what they believed in for decades. And people are loath to do so.


Chasuk 5 years ago

@James A Watkins: I disagreed with you enough that I wrote a hub about it:

http://hubpages.com/hub/Atheism-Ronald-Reagan-and-...


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Chasuk— Very interesting. I'll come over and read it soon. Thanks for the link.


platinumOwl4 profile image

platinumOwl4 4 years ago

James A Watkins, I am currently reading The Everything founding Fathers Book by Meg Greene, and Paula M. Stathakis, Once I finished I will comment on this hub. Keep up the great work.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago Author

platinumOwl4— It is wonderful to hear from you again, my friend. I had not heard of the book you mentioned but I did read a few reviews of it just now. Perhaps this is a subject I should explore further.

Thank you for your kind words. I appreciate the visit and your comments.


Levertis Steele profile image

Levertis Steele 4 years ago from Southern Clime

Well done, James!

You quoted, 'President John F. Kennedy declared that `The rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God.'

I wholeheartedly agree with this. "To God be the glory!"

911 was enough to make more protesters have a change of heart and "pledge allegiance." :)

My grands are learning founding history in schol. I assumed most schols still taught that. Maybe not


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago Author

Levertis Steele— I am so glad that you came by and read this Hub and that you approve of it and that you once again affirm and encouragement me in my writings.

I love that quote by JFK too. "To God be the Glory!" Indeed!!

Amen.

We should all pledge allegiance to the flag, of the United States of America, and to the republic, for which its stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.


wba108@yahoo.com profile image

wba108@yahoo.com 4 years ago from upstate, NY

I think this is the best Hub you've ever written, at least the best for me! This information needs to be trumpeted across this nation and shouted from the rooftops!

"Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good America will cease to be great." Alexis De Tocqueville"

This says it all, the real power of America is in our God, period!

Thomas Jefferson said, "If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people, under the pretense of taking care of them, they must become happy."

I could swear he's (Jefferson) plagerizing my Hubs! I don't know how many times I've said this! Isn't this exactly what liberalism is all about, "Mommy fascism"!

Samuel Adams added, "The Utopian schemes of leveling (redistribution of the wealth) . . . are arbitrary, despotic, and in our government, unconstitutional."

Now I know why the Democrats don't want the Constitution read in congress and feel the need to impune the founders!

I think your hub show be required reading for our members of Congress! Great Job!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago Author

wba108@yahoo.com— Thank you ever much for the high praise indeed! The best Hub I have ever writte, eh? Why, you have made my day. :)

I agree with you that Tocqueville truly grasped what it was that made young America great. Of course all nations are flawed as all men are flawed. But what many children are taught now in our public schools is that America rarely did anything right. It must make the kids wonder why so many tens of millions came here from around the world—on leaky rafts across shark-infested waters; across the Rio Grande; stowed away on Asia cargo ships. Who would want to come to such an awful place!?

I sure appreciate this visitation from you and your excellent comments. Well said!


Bobby Hill 3 years ago

The killing of our own children is what's wrong with america. Simple as that.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 3 years ago from Chicago Author

Bobby Hill— I certainly agree with you, my friend. Thank you for visiting my Hub and posting such a great comment.

You never played second base for the Cubs, did you?


John 3 years ago

Treaty of Paris did not found us as a nation. The Constitution did this. Until that point there was de jure no United States. Of course, the document begins in God's name. The several colonies were Christian. That changes when the nation is founded as a secular nation. Consequently, one by one references to Jesus in state constitutions disappear as there is not one mention of God in the new federal constitution.

Your scholarship needs imrpoving. A tratey does not found a natiion as you stated ergo your other erroneious conclusions follow


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 3 years ago from Chicago Author

John— Thank you very much for taking the time to read my article. I appreciate your comments.

You write that the "Treaty of Paris did not found us as a nation. The Constitution did this."

Please pardon my ignorance, but I must confess that I am baffled by these sentences. I just now re-read my article and I do not see where I made any such assertions as you credit to me. What are you talking about?

This Hub lists quotes by the Founding Fathers of our nation and many Presidents who came after them. Are you saying I have misquoted any of the men featured on this page? If so, please tell me specifically what quote is misattributed. If not, you might want to shut the hell up. Or at least clarify what you are trying to say. :D

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