We here in the United States are a divided bunch, and in most regards that divisiveness is clear after only a brief glance at the composition of our Congress. The reason the term “most” is important here is that there are certain issues that are perceived to be too controversial to be on the wrong side of. One of them is God.
We are a nation composed of Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and many other religions. We also have a substantial population of people who are either unaffiliated or are flat-out nonbelievers. The fact that we continue to legislatively support terms like “under God” and “in God we trust” makes a mockery of our democracy and the First Amendment to our constitution.
As you are surely aware, the First Amendment states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion”, and that clause, known as the Establishment Clause, has been roundly interpreted by not only our Supreme Court but a whole slew of lawmakers to imply a separation of Church and State. Jefferson described it as a wall of separation between Church and State.
The entire idea behind the clause is that one religion should not be given preference over another, that religion in general should not be given preference over non-religion, and that non-religion should not be given preference over religion in general. The fact that our politicians and particularly our presidents are perceived to be somehow unelectable if they even fail to announce their devotion to Christianity represents a tyranny of the majority, and the result is the shameless violation of our Constitution.
As a secular humanist, I am disgusted that as a citizen of this great nation I have no choice but to be associated with a religion that I perceive to be morally bankrupt in many respects. It is not the perspectives of the majority for which the Bill of Rights was established, but for those of the minority. In this instance, I am in that minority, and I implore you all to consider that one day I may not be, and that it is in your interest to consider my words carefully.
Painfully. Slow. Progress.