Candidates' Views on Separation of Church and State

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posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 01:32 PM
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Originally posted by loam
I find it amusing that you'd pass on that and his commitment to faith based organizations as a material part of his administration,


I passed on it because I have thoroughly investigated it and have found NO evidence that he will impose his religious views in his legislature. In other words, he will "make no law respecting an establishment of religion".

What his plan entails is to work with churches and other organizations to help needy people in the community. That's not making laws based on religion. There's a huge difference. There's nothing wrong with the government working with religious organizations to help people, as long as those people don't have to go to church and accept Christ as their savior to get the help, AND as long as the government doesn't support the church itself, but just the charitable program.

There is the danger of crossing the line, but it's not inherent in the program. If it's done honestly (and there ARE safeguards) there's not a thing wrong with it. As long as the work is being done in a secular way (no discrimination of gay people in hiring, for example) and there are safeguards in place to insure that the religion isn't imposed on the people it's helping, I believe it's actually a great way to bring help to many more people who need it. The government is helping the people. The church is just the middle-man and provides volunteers and physical structures to facilitate the program.

What, about that, violates the first amendment?



I have no beef with people opposing Palin simply because they don't agree with her views. Hell, I don't even agree with most of her views.


I oppose Palin because I don't agree with her views. And one of those views is that she has the power, the desire and the right to make laws that reflect her religion, as I showed in this post.




posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 01:39 PM
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If you look at the way it is written freedom "of", not freedom from, religion.

To me that implies protection for the church from the State and not vice versa.

I also feel that ones spiritual beliefs, or lack of, should not merit any more/less weight on ones ability to be successful in politics.



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 01:42 PM
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I agree with that part, mhc, but the other part: "make no law respecting an establishment of religion", protects the state from the church.



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 01:48 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
I agree with that part, mhc, but the other part: "make no law respecting an establishment of religion", protects the state from the church.


I disagree, actually this is protecting differing spiritual views from gaining more merit or authority over other views.

In politics all religious views should be given equal or no merit, because they are all subjective opinions, speculations and no fact other than your own personal life experiences.



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 01:57 PM
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Originally posted by mhc_70
I disagree, actually this is protecting differing spiritual views from gaining more merit or authority over other views.


Well, that's true, but I believe it's incomplete.




It is one of the fundamental principles of the Supreme Court's Establishment Clause jurisprudence that the Constitution forbids not only state practices that "aid one religion . . . or prefer one religion over another," but also those practices that "aid all religions" and thus endorse or prefer religion over nonreligion.


Source

And, in that way, it "protects the state from religion". That's kind of a sloppy way to say it, I admit, but the quote above makes the point I was trying to make.



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 02:13 PM
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reply to post by Benevolent Heretic
 


Regarding Palin and the State not interferring with Religion....

This is an interesting article (There are assumptions, and opinions, so please read it and formulate your own opinion)
Book Banning Claims

This stood out in the article:

Shortly after taking office in 1996 as mayor of Wasilla, a city of about 7,000 people, Palin asked the city’s head librarian about banning books. Later, the librarian was notified by Palin that she was being fired, although Palin backed off under pressure.

Source

Here is the part that might be relevant to your thread (If True...):

“She asked me if I would object to censorship, and I replied ‘Yup’,” Emmons told a reporter. “And I told her it would not be just me. This was a constitutional question, and the American Civil Liberties Union would get involved, too.”

The Rev. Howard Bess, a liberal Christian preacher in the nearby town of Palmer, said the church Palin and her family attended until 2002, the Wasilla Assembly of God, was pushing to remove his book from local bookstores.

Emmons told him that year that several copies of “Pastor I Am Gay” had disappeared from the library shelves, Bess said.

“Sarah brought pressure on the library about things she didn’t like,” Bess said. “To believe that my book was not targeted in this is a joke.”


Source

I'm just providing the link for your readers to read and make their own conclusion on.

Cheers-





Edit to fix External Quote tags...

[edit on 12-9-2008 by defuntion]



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 02:14 PM
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If obama continues Bush Faith Base program,

I understand this

they can't discriminate who they help or who they hire based on religion.

Does this also mean that they can't talk about their religion to the people they are helping?



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 02:58 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic

Originally posted by mhc_70
I disagree, actually this is protecting differing spiritual views from gaining more merit or authority over other views.


Well, that's true, but I believe it's incomplete.




It is one of the fundamental principles of the Supreme Court's Establishment Clause jurisprudence that the Constitution forbids not only state practices that "aid one religion . . . or prefer one religion over another," but also those practices that "aid all religions" and thus endorse or prefer religion over nonreligion.


Source

And, in that way, it "protects the state from religion". That's kind of a sloppy way to say it, I admit, but the quote above makes the point I was trying to make.


What a hack...Not you.

Thats the ACLUs' attempt to skew the definition.

Again, spiritual opinions, OR LACK OF, should not give one candidate more clout than someone or NFP group who believes there is NO God. This is a faith based issue and it is effectively equaled the playing field for all citizens.

This is protecting non-religious, or lack of belief, citizens from the government.



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 03:01 PM
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reply to post by defuntion
 


Yes, I did know about that and it's another area in which I suspect Palin's faith had some influence.


Originally posted by jam321
Does this also mean that they can't talk about their religion to the people they are helping?


Yes. If you mean "preaching".
That is an important safeguard.

Obama's Faith-Based and Community Plan



Obama’s initiative will be governed by a set of core principles for federal grant recipients. In order to receive federal funds to provide social services, faith-based organizations:

- Cannot use federal funds to proselytize or provide religious sectarian instruction.
- Cannot discriminate against nonmembers in providing services. They must remain open to all and cannot practice religious discrimination against the populations they serve.
- Must comply with federal anti-discrimination laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Religious organizations that receive federal dollars cannot discriminate with respect to hiring for government-funded social service programs.
- Can only use taxpayer dollars on secular programs and initiatives.
- Must prove their efficacy and be judged based on program effectiveness. They will be expected to demonstrate proven program outcomes to continue to receive funding. Obama will fund programs that work and end funding for programs that do not – whether they are large or small, well-established or new, faith-based or otherwise.


[edit on 12-9-2008 by Benevolent Heretic]



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 03:20 PM
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Originally posted by mhc_70
Thats the ACLUs' attempt to skew the definition.


No. It's the Supreme Court's definition. Here's a non-ACLU source:

First Amendment Center



Conclusion

Although the Court’s interpretation of the establishment clause is in flux, it is likely that for the foreseeable future a majority of the justices will continue to view government neutrality toward religion as the guiding principle. Neutrality means not favoring one religion over another, not favoring religion over non-religion and vice versa.


[edit on 12-9-2008 by Benevolent Heretic]



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 03:34 PM
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Originally posted by 44soulslayer
reply to post by jam321
 


I wish he does do that actually.

"E Pluribus Unum" is a far better description of America's calling in the world than "In God We Trust".



the other side of the great seal says Annuit Cœptis

Hence, the motto and the Eye of Providence both alluded to the same reality. The Eye of Providence was commonly understood as a symbol for God and destiny. Hence, Annuit Cœptis is translated by the U.S. State Department, The U.S. Mint,[4] and the U.S. Treasury[5] as "He (God) has favored our undertakings." (brackets in original).[6]

Bottom line this nation was founded on religious principles. Im not even a religious person but the ideals created this country and by removing them you remove the heart of the united states. Separation of church and state was not meant to keep religion out of government it was meant to keep government out of religion.



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 05:26 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic

Originally posted by mhc_70
Thats the ACLUs' attempt to skew the definition.


No. It's the Supreme Court's definition. Here's a non-ACLU source:

First Amendment Center



Conclusion

Although the Court’s interpretation of the establishment clause is in flux, it is likely that for the foreseeable future a majority of the justices will continue to view government neutrality toward religion as the guiding principle. Neutrality means not favoring one religion over another, not favoring religion over non-religion and vice versa.


[edit on 12-9-2008 by Benevolent Heretic]


The hack reference was directed at the writer from the aclu source you offered.

There is no need to protect the State from the church, this is an automatic result of keeping all faith based opinions equal in politics.



posted on Sep, 12 2008 @ 09:38 PM
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Originally posted by Dronetek
I'm especially blown away by the "pray to make me an instrument of god". Can you imagine if bush said something like that?


Actually, Bush has made it perfectly clear that he considers himself chosen by God to be president, and that the war in Iraq is divinely ordained.

Obama's request for prayer is consistent with his Christian faith. Asking to be made an instrument of God and to know and do God's will is normal for many if not most Christians. Praying to be used as God intends trumps asking for power or money or fame, etc. God could require a life of self-sacrifice.

There is no doubt that Obama is a committed Christian, but I have read or heard nothing that suggests he would impose that faith on others who do not believe as he does. He's made it clear that he does respect the separation of church and state, and that both church and state benefit from that separation.

Similarly, I don't see McCain as any sort of radical believer, though he does oppose abortion rights, which is troublesome for many. He is supported by many who hold extreme positions, though to assume he shares those extremes or would legislate accordingly is guilt by association. The jury's still out on Palin, though I will be reading and watching her interviews in the coming days.

Having or not having a religious faith is not the problem. It's the willingness to impose one's own beliefs on those who do not believe the same way and/or don't agree.

The potential for damage of a president, a Congress, or a Supreme Court that is fanatical in any direction is great. But believers should have a place in those institutions as well as non-believers. So far the Constitution has worked pretty well to keep fanaticism in check.



posted on Sep, 13 2008 @ 02:39 PM
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Originally posted by mhc_70
The hack reference was directed at the writer from the aclu source you offered.


I realize that. That's why I gave you a different source of what the Supreme Court itself said about it.



There is no need to protect the State from the church, this is an automatic result of keeping all faith based opinions equal in politics.


I disagree. I think the government needs to be protected from religion. In other words, I don't think laws should be made based on religious dogma or opinion. And an atheistic or non-religious organization should be equal to all religious organizations in the eyes of the law.



posted on Sep, 13 2008 @ 03:47 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic


There is no need to protect the State from the church, this is an automatic result of keeping all faith based opinions equal in politics.


I disagree. I think the government needs to be protected from religion. In other words, I don't think laws should be made based on religious dogma or opinion.


Then your extrapolating on the original writers intent.

Most people believe their moral code comes from a higher being, or a spiritual side, so their decision is going to have a religious influence. As long as there is "freedom of religion" no moral code will ever trump the other just because of what religion it is based on, instead the merits of the evidence provided towards a better society and/or any negative effects.



And an atheistic or non-religious organization should be equal to all religious organizations in the eyes of the law.


Thats freedom of religion.



posted on Sep, 13 2008 @ 04:16 PM
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I don't really mind what the US President's religion is providing they don't try and force it on everyone else, if they can't do that they shouldn't be President.

Obama seems the closest to the above.





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