Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Getting Ahead of Us

JEFFERSON CITY – Rep. David Sater (R-Cassville) filed House Concurrent Resolution 13 to establish Christianity as the official religion of Missouri, according to a March 4 report from the CBS affiliate, KMOV, in St. Louis.

The resolution establishes that the forefathers recognized a Christian God and used the principles of that God as the founding principles of this nation. It further establishes that the General Assembly “exercise the common sense that voluntary prayer in public schools and religious displays on public property are not a coalition of church and state, but rather the justified recognition of the positive role that Christianity has played in this great nation ….”

What is this really about? As my wife pointed out when we first heard of this (packaged as establishing Christianity as the state’s official religion) that this was really about prayer in school. She was right. The actual language of the resolution never says anything about establishing Christianity as the state’s official religion, at least now how I read it.

But this is really about something more. This is about protecting the majority against the minority and about being right. As one of my older family members says: “The are trying to get ahead of us.” This is a core element in her belief system and I think it is much more prevalent in America than we want to think. I just most folks know who they can and who they cannot say this to. My family member who says this thinks “we” all think the say way she does. She has no concept that others may feel differently.

The language in this resolution talks about protecting the majority, which is a politically correct way of keeping “us” ahead of “them.” Our founding fathers felt persecuted because their beliefs were different than the Church of England. They left and came here to establish rule that allowed the people to be free to practice faith in their own way. Our founding fathers were trying, in essence, to protect the minority from the dominance and oppression of the majority. This bill is trying to “protect the majority” which is not, as is maintained in the bill, the tenants of this country’s founders.

Setting an official state religion does not protect the majority or solidify freedom. It is just one more way to erode the freedoms that all persons have. In fact, God himself does not force Christianity on us. He gives us free will to choose him, choose another god(s) or to choose nothing. That freedom of choice, free will, is what Christianity is all about. Maybe our attempts to establish an official state religion or forced prayer in school will erode those Christian tenants and make us less free.

I am glad that I am free to choose Christianity. I come to Christ, to God, willingly and knowingly.


Unknown said...

Maybe I am being naive but I assumed it was like so much other legislation, just for show. They pass legislation all the time declaring this day to honor this person and this day to do that but it has no teeth and is just for show. I was assuming that this legislation is similar. This way the state can recognize its heritage and not really do anything else. Maybe you are right but I can not see that kind of legislation standing up in court so it would be an insane thing to do at this time. Of course, our legislature can be a little insane as we have seen. It will be interesting to see how it plays out.

admin said...

This resolution does more than recognize heritage. It specifies that there is NO coalition between state and religion for two issues: prayer in school and public displays of Ten Commandments.

How it stands up to legal scrutiny, is a different matter.

Unknown said...

I don't understand what the issue is with “voluntary prayer in public schools and religious displays on public property". If done right, both are already legal. In my opinion from reading the link (and other local articles on this) this does not have really do anything but make this declaration.