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Aug 22 2009

RCimT: US Separation of Church and State

Here’s another edition of Random Crap in my Tabs. I’m just going to abbreviate it from now on, in fact — that takes up a lot of title space otherwise.

Wingnuts are freaking out over the proposed new dollar coins, which apparently won’t have “In God We Trust” on them. Except one of the commenters, who says, “uh, yes it will, in the edging”. While I agree that it’s a shame they’re getting rid of the Susan B. Anthony coin, it’s an interesting idea for cutting some of your expenditures — Canada saved a crapload of money by switching to the Loonie, because they last on average ten times longer than the dollar bill. And there’s way more of them, so you’d have to reprint that many bills every year. And ship them back to be destroyed, at that. Lots of overhead. And besides, it’s not like everyone prior to 1956 or whenever, was de facto unpatriotic and unreligious. The “In God We Trust” motto is brand-spanking-new, and merely the result of a whole lot of Russia-hatred.

Ed Brayton quotes and discusses the trials that a non-Christian soldier has had to endure in trying to serve his country without his religion entering into the picture. Needless to say, from taking the oath without “so help me God”, to just going about his daily business without being harassed by his fellow soldiers or superior officers, it is apparently a difficult thing for a heathen to do.

A school principal and his lackey are in hot water over repeatedly trying to lead the faculty and staff in prayers after having had an injunction placed against them for doing so. They may in fact go to jail. If they had prayed silently, as suggested in Matthew 6:5-8, there would have been no problems whatsoever. Or even if they were just praying out loud, to themselves, also no problem. The problem lies entirely in trying to lead others in prayer — making the irreligous or those of other religions uncomfortable and unwelcome. It also establishes the school as a Christian school, when a Christian attempts to lead people into prayer at it. This may not seem like a bad thing to a Christian, but to everyone else, of every other religion, it is a horrible thing for their freedom to practice their own religion as they see fit.

Another place where the separation of church and state is regularly eroded, is in congress. And the media oftentimes turns a blind eye. Or rather, they cover the story, then treat it as though it’s no longer a story, when the issues raised are still relevant and still demonstrably bad for society. Such is the case with the self-professed Christian Mafia, living on C-Street in Washington, DC. The only person still covering this egregious breach of the separation of church and state is Rachel Maddow of MSNBC. And Alternet is shaming the rest of the media for it, because this is huge — this is a group of people with a shared religious belief pulling the levers of power in a concerted effort to promote their religious views and values to the exclusion of everyone else’s.

And finally, apparently Texas Christians have won a victory against the separation of church and state by mandating that classes on the Christian Bible be offered as electives. I look forward to them also mandating elective classes on the Qu’ran, the Old Testament, the Veddas, and the Upanishad. Oh, wait, “teach the controversy” only means “teach OUR version of the creation of the universe, forget about all those other heathen religions and the scientific and by necessity secular version that’s based on reality and undercuts our beliefs”.

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