You may remember that I recently wrote “Inauguration or Church Service?” in response to the planned religious involvement in Obama’s upcoming inauguration, but I’m not the only one who noticed.
Charlie, whether you realize it or not, Mr. Newdow is fighting for your rights as well. If the inauguration contained prayers to a different god, I’m pretty sure you would be (possibly literally) up in arms about it, even if 80% of the country had converted to this other religion.
The point of fighting for separation of church and state is not to take away your right to believe in any religion you choose, it is to protect all of our rights, and particularly to protect our government from undue influence by any specific religious sect.
When you go to get your driver’s license, do you have to affirm your Christian faith before you will be trusted to drive? When a police officer joins the force, do they swear to uphold God’s Holy Law, or the laws and constitution of the United States of America?
If religion had never been a factor in the inauguration, few people would push to have it added, or even notice its absence. Inclusion of religious activities in official government events is always divisive, and completely irrelevant to what our government is supposed to be.
Let’s look at a few of the main claims you make, and see if they’re true.
- If you look at this issue using cowboy logic, if atheists don’t believe there is a God, why do they care where his name appears? Atheists by their very supposed beliefs claim they don’t believe in religion.
You ask us to look at this issue using “cowboy logic”, but your “cowboy logic” seems to be no logic at all. I’m guessing that you don’t believe in Allah, Zeus or Baal, but if any one of them were praised on our money, in our schools or in the presidential inauguration, I think your “cowboy logic” would go haywire.
If you really think that not believing in something makes implicit government endorsement of it acceptable, then if I petition for Baal to be praised in schools, will you support me?
- Just what in the name of Sam Hill is atheism, if not a religion? It’s a belief, a choice concerning the deity, whether pro or con, so what atheists are doing is trying to force their religion on everybody else.
Atheism is nothing like a religion. We have no dogma or belief system, no Atheist Pope, no belief in any gods. We have nothing that makes a religion a religion, and objecting to religion in government in no way prevents the free exercise of religion by any person in the country.
- Now Mr. Newdow … wants prayer taken out of Obama’s inauguration claiming that it amounts to the government endorsing religion. Well if Mr. Newdow has his way and they take the prayer out doesn’t that amount to the government endorsing atheism?
You seem to be admitting here that including Christian prayer in the inauguration is an endorsement of Christianity, you just object to it being changed to an endorsement of atheism.
Removing a Christian prayer is no more an endorsement of atheism than it is an endorsement of Islam. If Mr. Newdow was instead invited to speak, along with another famous atheist, with the expressed intent of promoting atheism, then that would be an endorsement of atheism.
A lack of religious involvement in an activity makes it secular, not atheistic, and as much as it pains many fundamentalist Christians, a secular government is exactly what the founders of this country intended.
- The last I heard something like 80% of Americans believe in God in one-way or another. If this is truly a nation “by the people and for the people” where the majority rules, there should not even be a question of what should happen at President Obama’s inauguration.
If this is truly a nation based on the constitution laid down at its founding, then there really is no question what should not happen. There should not be religion inserted into government events. It wouldn’t matter if 100% of US citizens were Christians, it would still not be an appropriate time for prayers or other religious activities.
- I can’t imagine living in a dark world of believing that there is no Heaven, no Hell and no hope, that prayers are never answered because there’s no divine being to answer them.
You also go on to imply that we are all secretly terrified of your god, but does this really make any sense?
Do you really think that we are all liars who are simply unafraid of the Hell that we know awaits us, and so sinister that we are trying to take everyone else there with us?
I accept that many if not most Christians truly believe that their god is real and at the same time believe that no other gods are. Is it so hard to accept that we feel the same way about your god as well?
- If we deny God His rightful place in the affairs of this nation should we expect Him to intervene when we need protection? Just what do you think has kept us safe from terrorist attacks since 9/11? It certainly wasn’t the atheists.
Like God intervened to prevent 9/11 since we’ve had prayer in our inaugurations and “under God” in the pledge recited in our schools and “In God We Trust” on or money for many years now?
Oh, right, he didn’t.
You’re right about one thing though, Charlie, it wasn’t the atheists who have kept this country safe from terrorist attacks since 9/11. It was my lucky horse shoe.
On September 12th, 2001 I bought my horse shoe from a particularly powerful witch, and I have selflessly used it to protect the United States from terrorist attacks rather than using it to make myself rich and powerful. No one seems to be grateful though, and I’ve had just about enough of this.
Your lies and insults were the straw that broke the camel’s back. I hereby withdraw my horse shoe’s protection against terrorist attacks. Now whenever there is another terrorist attack in the US, you’ll know the true power it wields.
Stick that in your “cowboy logic” and smoke it!