Friday, September 24, 2010
Religions, Anti-Choice, Adoption and Other Oppressions/ Personal Opinions
An avowed atheist, agnostic, deist or pagan, no matter how morally upright, no matter how qualified, could never be elected in this nation. As long as this kind of tyranny persists, adoption, denial of abortion rights and the raiding of other nations for infants and toddlers to fill the cribs of the faithful will continue. When you put religion (superstition) together with capitalism (greed), you have a witch's brew of the vilest nature.
Those who praise the assumed Christian faith of our founding fathers have obviously not read their history. So I pulled up a bit of information about who these people really were and then skipped to my favorite pundit on the world of today.
"All persons shall have full and free liberty of religious opinion; nor shall any be compelled to frequent or maintain any religious institution": freedom for religion, but also freedom from religion. (Edwin S. Gaustad, Faith of Our Fathers: Religion and the New Nation, San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1987, p. 38. Jefferson proposed his language in 1776.)
I may grow rich by an art I am compelled to follow; I may recover health by medicines I am compelled to take against my own judgment; but I cannot be saved by a worship I disbelieve and abhor. (Thomas Jefferson, notes for a speech, c. 1776. From Gorton Carruth and Eugene Ehrlich, eds., The Harper Book of American Quotations, New York: Harper & Row, 1988, p. 498.)
But a short time elapsed after the death of the great reformer [Jesus] of the Jewish religion, before his principles were departed from by those who professed to be his special servants, and perverted into an engine for enslaving mankind, and aggrandizing their oppressors in Church and State. (Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to Samuel Kercheval, 1810; from George Seldes, ed., The Great Quotations, Secaucus, New Jersey: Citadel Press, 1983, p. 370)
The most detestable wickedness, the most horrid cruelties, and the greatest miseries that have afflicted the human race have had their origin in this thing called revelation, or revealed religion. It has been the most dishonorable belief against the character of the Divinity, the most destructive to morality and the peace and happiness of man, that ever was propagated since man began to exist. (Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason, 1794-1795. From Gorton Carruth and Eugene Ehrlich, eds., The Harper Book of American Quotations, New York: Harper & Row, 1988, p. 494.)
George Washington's practice of Christianity was limited and superficial because he was not himself a Christian. In the enlightened tradition of his day, he was a devout Deist--just as many of the clergymen who knew him suspected. (Barry Schwartz, George Washington: The Making of an American Symbol, New York: The Free Press, 1987, pp. 174-175.)
Washington's religious belief was that of the enlightenment: deism. He practically never used the word "God," preferring the more impersonal word "Providence." How little he visualized Providence in personal form is shown by the fact that he interchangeably applied to that force all three possible pronouns: he, she, and it. (James Thomas Flexner, George Washington: Anguish and Farewell [1793-1799], Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1972, p. 490.)
And I have no doubt that every new example will succeed, as every past one has done, in shewing that religion & Govt will both exist in greater purity, the less they are mixed together. (James Madison, letter to Edward Livingston, July 10, 1822; published in The Complete Madison: His Basic Writings, ed. by Saul K. Padover, New York: Harper & Bros., 1953.)
Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprize [sic], every expanded prospect. (James Madison, in a letter to William Bradford, April 1, 1774, as quoted by Edwin S. Gaustad, Faith of Our Fathers: Religion and the New Nation, San Francisco: Harper & Row, 1987, p. 37.)
"Persecution is not an original feature in any religion; but is always the strongly marked feature of all law-religion, or religions established by law." Thomas Paine
(Historian Craig Nelson:) "When Alexander Hamilton was asked why the U.S. Constitution made no mention of God, he said the country did not require 'foreign aid'; when his mother insisted on a serious reply, he explained, 'We forgot.'"
Why am I so intent on this ideal? I have watched, in my lifetime, as the influence of the church continues to spread throughout this nation. I have observed the formation of Christian Political Action Committees and heard the hate-mongering of the judgmental pundits that push this un-American agenda. And I have witnessed the pain of many, many mothers and children separated and poured into the adoption cauldron because of the influence of the Christian church in the US. These folks are more concerned about who had sex than in who lied in order to start a war. They want to control us down to our very most intimate acts, including procreation.
From Thomas Jefferson to Thomas Paine, from George Washington to George Carlin, people have tried to practice and present common sense on this issue. Had they prevailed, I doubt there would be any problems with single motherhood and birth control and a social conscience that would allow us to care for those who need care. So the last word is from the latter George. Same song, present day.
"I'm completely in favor of the separation of Church and State. My idea is that these two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death." George Carlin