The controversy swirling about the Ground Zero Islamic Center has brought discussion of religion and politics to the center of national news and debate. Ironically for nearly a hundred years, American progressives have incorrectly argued the principle of separation of church and state, which appropriately prohibits a state-sponsored or controlled religion, also precludes an individual from expressing their religious perspective in their politics. As a result of this distortion, we have been forbidden to speak of God, invoke God’s blessing, display God’s commandments, or thank God for his myriad blessings in a public setting. In actuality, the First Amendment that prohibits Congress from passing law “respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” was not intended to exclude religion from American government and society but rather, by protecting the individual’s right of religious freedom, to encourage expression of the timeless and absolute virtues and morality common to Judeo-Christian tradition in government and society.
Our nation’s founding irrefutably has its basis in a Judeo-Christian understanding of our
existence – “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that
they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are
life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Our country’s founders held “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” as bestowed gifts intrinsic to our creation, and intended the protection of those unalienable rights would form the immutable and absolute foundation of our government and society. Recognizing that society founded on liberty unguided by virtue would devolve into an immorality and injustice, they understood our God-given “unalienable rights” also conferred a moral responsibility to abide by the absolute and unchanging Natural Law of God. John Adams wrote “We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and virtue…. Our Constitution was made for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” George Washington states in his Farewell Address, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports… reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.”
The same progressive thinking that distorts the intent of “separation of church and state” also fails to grasp or disingenuously does not admit, that by any other name a person’s belief system is still their religion. For the progressives, their “religion” arises from their secular understanding of the world. They attribute the life, wonder, beauty, and obvious order of the Universe to a random cosmic accident. Their “god” is a human conceived vision of perfect humanity; and their vision, by definition, is ever evolving and progressing as science evolves and progresses. In this religion, truth and morality are not absolute but relative to “human progress” and thus ever evolving as needed to achieve human perfection. We now find ourselves at a time of human “progress” that the moral code allows killing of millions of unborn infants; allows confiscating property of some (“the undeserving”) and giving it to others (“the deserving”); assures us that “good” family structure is not limited to 1 mother and 1 father taking responsibility for the caring and teaching of their children but also includes any “loving” couple or trio or village. In the not so distant future, secular morality will call for denouncing/marginalizing and ultimately eliminating Judeo-Christian belief and its intrinsic absolute morality and truth, because absolutism of morality and truth hamper progressive achievement of secular human “perfection”.
By describing their ideology and morality as non-religious, secular, and neutral, the progressives promote their principles as not only allowable but preferred for guiding our politics and society. Similarly, they insist broad tolerance of different beliefs to be secular and neutral and thus legitimate political and societal positions. At the same time, they disallow our foundational Judeo-Christian ideology and morality as well as our affirming the goodness of one belief over another as a biased, extreme, and illegitimate position because it violates “separation of Church and State”. So for example, progressives hold that allowing both traditional marriage and family structure and homosexual marriage and family structure as a secular and neutral, and therefore legitimate political and societal policy. Conversely, they decry as bigots those who believe that only traditional marriage and family structure conforms to God’s instruction and plan for Man, and they deem such belief as an illegitimate political and societal guiding principle. Ultimately in the name of enlightened tolerance, their promotion of acceptance of different, and often conflicting beliefs, implies equal goodness of those beliefs. Or, more correctly understood, goodness does not reside in one or the other beliefs but only in the concept of tolerance. Clearly for many of us, promotion of broad tolerance of conflicting beliefs is not a neutral but rather an extreme stance.
By holding that only their “neutral” secular positions can be justifiably expressed in politics, even though those “neutral” positions are distinct from and irreconcilable with our foundational Judeo-Christian beliefs, the progressives would impose their secular belief system as the exclusive state “religion”. They have imposed their secular, allegedly neutral non-religious religion not only on our politics and government but also on the education system so to indoctrinate our children with their “politically correct” beliefs. Ultimately to the great detriment of our country and society, this secular “religion” disavows the very morality and absolute nature of that morality the founders held critical for a free, just, and prosperous society and sought to promote by protecting religious rights as expressed in the Establishment Clause and in the intent of “separation of Church and State”.
Only by again properly understanding, affirming and enlivening in our society the Judeo-Christian principles underlying our country’s foundation and the resultant traditional American personal freedoms, economic freedoms, and values system, will we truly address the societal and economic corruption threatening the prosperity, freedom, and even sovereignty of our country.