No. 118 (essentialsaltes) wrote,
No. 118

Inbox Fury

A relative passed along a little rant entitled We The People..... Of The United States. I couldn't let it go, so I reply all'ed. And now, my captive audience, you too can read my response.

ARTICLE XI: You do not have the right to change our country's history or
heritage. This country was founded on the belief in one true God. And
yet, you are given the freedom to believe in any religion, any faith, or
no faith at all; with no fear of persecution. The phrase IN GOD WE TRUST
is part of our heritage and history, and if you are uncomfortable with
it, TOUGH!!!!

For the most part, I don't disagree strongly with any of the points except this last. Certainly it's true that America was colonized and founded by many people who took religion seriously and were seeking religious freedom. But that's very different from saying that the country was founded on the belief in one true god. In fact, the country was founded on the Constitution, which makes no mention of either God or religion except to say that government should stay out of it altogether.

The phrase "In God We Trust" was adopted by the US as a motto in 1956, so I'm not sure how much heritage and history it has. Before it became the motto, it was used on coinage starting in 1864. It's interesting to read the history of how that came to happen.

To summarize, a squeaky wheel (one of those complainers who thinks he has a right to be offended) wanted a religious reference added to the coins and wrote a letter to the Secretary of the Treasury. He said that adding God to our coins "would relieve us from the ignominy of heathenism" and eliminate "our national shame in disowning God". In other words, he was complaining that the Founding Fathers had set up a secular government. So when someone talks about our heritage and history, I think they ought to look back to the actual Constitution and the actual Founding Fathers as their guide, rather than what they think our country's history is. Many of the Founding Fathers were religious men, but in their wisdom they set up a 'heathen' government so that all could be free.
Tags: blog, politics, religion

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