Saturday, February 25, 2012

More Wilheru: Focusing on Founding Fathers and the Constitution

America's Christian Foundation
John R. Houk
© February 25, 2012

Wilheru comments on my comment which is as follows:

Implication is the Leftist/Atheist reasoning to abandon Original Intent in favor of the Living Constitution fallacy that Left Wing activist judges have employed since the middle 20th century.

THOSE QUOTES ARE NOT FAKE! To say they are fake is like a person from Chicago talking about a river in Egypt – Da Nile. [Editor: this is edited slightly from the original comment]

The line of comments comes from a post entitled: “Wilheru Criticizes Standing Up to Militant Atheists”. You can read the context of our comments by reading the post (which has been cross posted on several of my blogs) and the comments following.


Wilheru says:

What is the NeoCon (assuming) biblical literalist reasoning to abandon almost all laws from Leviticus?

John says:

Hmm … I thought I had already covered my stand about the Law of the Old Testament vis-a-vie the New Testament. It could have been someone else though. Here it goes.

Christ is the fulfillment of the Law which does not end the Law; however Christ’s Atonement expiates the penalty (aka curse) of the Law. Thus the Law of Moses is part of the Judeo-Christian foundation influencing the Founding Fathers and the Great Commission of Christ to share the Good News of Redemption has enabled the West (not just America) to move out of medieval punishments that are now considered ridiculous.

Wilheru says:

Besides, nowhere in the Constitution or its amendments is there any mention that churches should be subsidized by the Government, but there is a clear implication that they should not be subsidized because that would be a step in the direction of a state church.

John says:

Actually the Constitution says nothing about “Churches” and uses the term “religion”. From the writings of the most ardent of Deists as well as Christian Founding Fathers, it is evident that “religion” referred to Christianity.

The First Amendment specifically says:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,

So let’s see. The Legislative Branch (i.e. Congress) shall make NO Law Establishing a State religion; which is to say in context of the Founding Fathers, Congress shall make no Christian Denomination the State religion of the USA.

There is NO place here that forbids Christianity from being an influence or having a political voice in the U.S. Government (i.e. Executive Branch, Legislative Branch AND Judicial Branch). It is simple; Congress cannot establish a State Church. Since there is no mention of Christianity being forbidden from interacting with the government, any interpretation that presumes Christianity must stay off of taxpayer owned public property is a false assumption.

AND to nail my point the First Amendment continues:

or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Congress cannot legislate the free exercise of religion which would include in government. Congress cannot legislate the abridgement of Free Speech which is inclusive of religion in government. Congress cannot legislate the abridgement of a Free Press which would include religion writing about government. Congress cannot abridge the right of people to assemble peaceably which would include a religious service on taxpayer-public property. Congress cannot abridge the right of people to petition THE GOVERNMENT for redress of grievances which would include the various Christian Denominations that may have a private or public grievance.

There has been a lot of clarity there until the Judicial Branch began muddying that clarity by legislating from the Bench rather than interpreting the Original Intent of the U.S. Constitution. The Judicial Branch has become nearly despotic in its authority in the last 60 to 70 years. The Judicial Branch needs reformed to restrict its duty to interpretation rather than legislating.

Wilheru says:

You’re right about the first quote thing, sorry. It isn’t fake, however it isn’t authored by Washington, so it’s hard to tell if he really believed that. Some quotes by Jefferson, on the other hand, are clearly quote mined. Reading the text in full contradicts the conclusions one might draw from reading just the quote.

John says:

As to quoting Jefferson, I don’t think there is as much quote mining as there is political spectrum mining. A Secularist (in the sense of Separation of Church and State Christians or other religions), Secular Humanist, and/or atheists can easily interpret Jefferson quotes as keeping Christianity out of the government as in the political process. Jefferson was clearly more Deist in the humanist sense than many other Founding Fathers; however some of the scholarship and writings of Jefferson also clearly shows he was not anti-Christian as the European Deists (as espoused by the French Revolution). Jefferson did write a Bible that included Christian Morality and Principles but abandoned the Christian Miraculous. I believe quotes of Jefferson read in the perspective of his own Bible demonstrates his thoughts that Christianity as an influence is something government should not restrict but rather to embrace as a way to keep society devolving into the dark side of majority rule democracy with the corruption of cultural values. In thus way the Right Side of the political spectrum can still claim Jefferson regarded the influence of Christianity as part of the Foundation (but CERTAINLY not the only influence) of the America Republic.

Wilheru says:

At some point I just gave up tracking down all quotes and am no longer interested. I have more important things to do than to argue with someone over the Internet who doesn’t accept reason (otherwise that one wouldn’t need to quote mine people) over what people who died more than three centuries ago felt. Goodbye and enjoy!

John says:

Actually Wilheru I believe I used a great deal of reason to demonstrate the Founding Fathers believed Christianity was a part of the foundation for America. I have to say also part of that foundation included the classics of Greco-Roman philosophy. However some of the greatest influence was from John Locke of which large portions of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution can be seen sometimes verbatim. Read John Locke’s Second Treatise on Government, also titled A Essay Concerning the true original, extent, and end of Civil Government, Book Two. John Locke is steeped in the Christian faith as an influence on secular government. Locke was not too popular with the British Monarchy.

Wilheru when you write in disdain of people who died more than three centuries ago you beckon to my point of Original Intent over the relatively modern political thought that the U.S. Constitution is a Living Constitution that can be molded to any interpretation a political ideology demands (typically judicial fiat) rather than the Constitutional process of Amendments.

If this is the last we are to comment to each other I bid you farewell or as the Founding Fathers' would have said, I bid you Godspeed.

JRH 2/25/12

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