~ by Melvin Whitlock
The most fundamental law instituted in the United States Constitution, the First Amendment; has long been under reconstruction by secularists groups in America. In reframing the words of Thomas Jefferson, secular groups have often replaced the preposition “of” with “from” in Jefferson’s famous “separation of Church and State” quote, in a frail attempt to promote the ideal of a godless government.
The First Amendment has been interpreted by secular groups as a clear indication that religion has no bearing on public policy. The First Amendment reads:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
When reading the words by the Founders; based on the First Amendment, there is no evidence to suggests that religion should be void in public society. In fact, the phrase ‘separation of church and state’ does not appear in the constitution at all. The phrase ‘separation of church and state’ was taken from a Jefferson letter, which Jefferson wrote to the Danbury Baptist Association in 1802; offering assurance to the group that neither the State, nor the Federal government, would ever infringe upon their religious freedom.
Still, we are often told from a secular perspective that Jefferson’s letter was not to protect religious freedom, but rather to enforce the opposite. The secular perspective often views the ‘separation of church’ phrase by Jefferson, as an affirmation of silencing the religious perspective from public discussion. As a result of secular misinterpretation towards Jefferson’s letter, as well as the First Amendment; I make the argument that Secularists have shown a strong willingness to redirect the constitution from promoting religious freedom, to enforcing a position of taciturnity for the voice of religion
Liberal ideology has long been associated with secularism as well as other anti-religious political positions, and I encourage liberal Christians to reconsider aligning themselves with a belief structure that favors the absence of faith over its inclusion. In my opinion, secularism targets Christianity more aggressively than it does any other religion. My assertion that Christianity is the prime target of secularism is evidenced by the following:
• Attempts by these groups to restructure the purpose of Christmas into a secularized celebration, rather than respecting it as the birth of Jesus Christ. For example: “Merry Christmas” is replaced with “Happy Holidays.”
• Attempts by these secular groups to restrict our children’s freedoms for religion in the public school sector. An example of this would be: disallowing a high school Valedictorian the ability to mention God or provide testimony in graduation speeches. I consider Secular restriction to faith as, the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” approach to religion.
• Scrutiny towards religious symbols such as in the Ten Commandments in courthouse buildings. Ironically, there is a depiction of Moses embedded on the Supreme Court building in D.C.
• Defamation of the Christian faith with inaccurate accounts of history in regards to The Crusades, Adolf Hitler, and Hate Speech Legislation.
Christianity is centered on an uncompromised truth of right and wrong, as instructed through an inerrant view of the Bible. I contend that whether one is: conservative or liberal, and believes the Bible to hold ‘all truth;’ there must be a common ground for morality. As a Christian conservative, I cannot view my liberal brother of the same faith as my adversary. In faith, it matters more to me that we arrive at the same destination, than it does on how we get there. Christians must be mindful not to stand alongside those who are ‘yoked’ against our faith, and remember that; despite political allegiance with a Party, our moral standard must never be compromised.
I argue that ACLU-type organizations could not support the Civil Rights Movements of the 20th century based on the ACLU and other similar organizations concreteness of the ‘wall of separation.’ The Civil Rights Movements during the twentieth century strongly connected its mission to the Christian faith, and this is evidenced by:
• Pastoral leadership-Many Pastors preached the message of Civil Rights from their pulpits. The ACLU has been instrumental in filing complaints with the IRS against Pastors who use the pulpit as a political engine.
• The Church Building-Often used as a meeting place for civil rights discussion, which as a result, caused many churches to be targets of bombings. The ACLU has been instrumental in filing complaints to the IRS against any church that allows political meetings to take place within that church’s’ walls.
• Prayer and Protest-Many civil rights protests against segregation often involved prayer and spiritual hymnals. Groups such as the ACLU have shown adamant disapproval against prayer in public buildings.
Secular organizations are heavy in opposition towards Christian leaders’ influencing public policy decisions. It is unlikely that the secular groups of today would have allied themselves with the civil rights movements of yesterday. Take for instance Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963: here is a man standing on the steps of a publicly funded memorial, given public-funded security, delivering a very Christian-toned message, and wearing the traditional pastoral robe. If the ACLU were to advocate a message such as Dr. King’s in 1963, then their advocacy shows a double-standard of their interpretation of the law.
Three things one should take from the ACLU and other Secular-supported organizations attempt to hijack the fight for Civil Rights:
1. Their beliefs are hypocritical, and they often retract from their own conviction of truth.
2. Their position is manipulative in the attempt to draw from the support that Civil Rights receives, while not believing in the legacy of those who marched for change.
3. Their attack is solely against those who are Christian Conservative, and not against those who have traditionally aligned themselves with liberalism.
It is clear that the Civil Rights Movements were heavily influenced by Christianity, and one must accept that the relationship between Christianity and civil rights in America strongly exists. If Secular groups were to applaud the actions of civil rights leaders in the 1950s and 1960s, then it would appear that their ‘wall of separation’ is in fact, flexible for religious influence; and that separation of church and state is merely a relative concept with no concreteness to the First Amendment.
Christians who align themselves with liberalism please understand; secular groups within the liberal circle have long vilified the very faith you profess, in an attempt to remove the relevance of Christian influence from society. Often I cite Dr. King in many of my writings, because he provides a true philosophical insight that has transcended all societies both past and present. In Dr. King’s Rediscovering Our Lost Values sermon in 1954, King stated “…as long as we adopt this relative attitude toward right and wrong, we are revolting against the very laws of God himself.”
Let us remember the warning of adopting a relative approach to morality, as Dr. King had stated. Let us as Christians understand: it is wrong to side with evil, and this is evidenced through the fall of Adam. Whether one is liberal, whether on is conservative, whether on is black, whether on is white; we cannot stand with those of unbelief, while ignoring the voices of our fellow brethren.