I make no secret about my belief system. It is not based in the slippery slope of organization, but instead founded on the idea that humans are excrement and as such, deserve every fucking thing that happens to them.
Whether it is the small child gunned down in his own home as the bullets fly from a drive by or the child who accidentally shoots himself in the brain pan because he found the gun his parent believed was the key to personal safety, we reap what we sow.
I also believe as I have mentioned numerous times, that every bad thing ever done to a human being can be traced back to religion. Along this line, I believe it is the misery created through belief systems that separates us from the lower life forms… not opposable thumbs, but the ability to denigrate and subjugate under the banner of heaven.
One of the things I have tried to explain to the devout (and overly sanctimonious christians that are now in vogue in politics) is that our founding fathers never intended christianity (much less religion of any type) to be the cornerstone of these United States of America.
I often find myself arguing with these good people after some Supreme Court decision that restricts the intrusion of religion into government. Someone, somewhere, will think that these decisions on the grounds that they conflict with the wishes and intents of the “founding fathers.”
Of course, anyone with half a brain and a decent education can actually tie these imbeciles in knots if they so choose. After listening and reading a pile of garbage about the beliefs of the founding fathers and the intent of their words in the constitution, I need to step into the fray and offer my two cents.
The idea that the founding fathers were devout christians is patently false. The primary members of the group of men who “founded” the United States were not believers of much of anything but religious freedom. The case can be made instead that they were deists. Deism was/is a philosophical belief that was widely accepted by heavy thinkers among the colonies during the revolution. Deism is founded on the idea that human reason could readily address most, if not all, social and political problems. They also believed that there was a supreme deity who created the universe to operate solely through natural law. To a deist, this god abandoned his creation shortly after setting it up (to fail or succeed of their own accord). This is where I begin to find a kinship with the founding fathers… they actually believed that this deity who created the heavens and the earth assumed no control, influence, or revelation to man. To these fine men, personal responsibility was the order of the day.
Ok, taking this idea to heart, one must come to terms with a necessary consequence of these beliefs… the rejection of many doctrines central to the Christian religion. Deists did not believe in the virgin birth, divinity, or resurrection of Jesus, the efficacy of prayer, the miracles of the Bible, or even the divine inspiration of the Bible.
Thomas Paine used no uncertain terms when he explained his beliefs in his book Age of Reason. His book created vehement outrage among his contemporaries and when he died, he did so utterly rejected and despised by the nation that considered him one of the fathers of the American Revolution. While some still mistakenly believe Paine was an atheist, he was in fact a Deist. Other notable deists include George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, Ethan Allen, James Madison, and James Monroe.
I die a little inside whenever I hear/read someone perpetuate the myth that the founding fathers intended to establish the country on “biblical” principles. One need not look further than the writings and lives of the men mentioned above to understand that that view is patently false. These men were most definitely not bible-thumping Christians… in fact, Thomas Jefferson was about as anti-cleric as you can get without being an atheist.
In various letters and articles written during his life, Jefferson explained how he believed the true threat to a civil order and good government was interference from the Christian church and its agents. In Notes on the State of Virginia, he said of this religion, “There is not one redeeming feature in our superstition of Christianity. It has made one half the world fools, and the other half hypocrites” (quoted by newspaper columnist William Edelen, “Politics and Religious Illiteracy,” Truth Seeker, Vol. 121, No. 3, p. 33). No, Jefferson definitely did not want religion to play a major role in policy.
Yet, you will still find people who need religion to be part of government in order to justify their own twisted world view. Everything from prayer in school, to abortion, to same-sex marriage is often tied closely with the belief that religion should have a hand at deciding how we govern our lives as a free republic.
I find the selective application of religion in government to be one of the greatest flaws of the christofacists that currently preside over the executive branch of our government. Their ideas and agendas have clearly led us further and further away from the ideal government in which the majority rules. Someday, I hope to see religious influence exterminated from government altogether… but as barnum once said, “there is a sucker born every minute!”