To the editor:
"Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between church and State." — Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptist Association, Connecticut, January 1, 1802.
"The civil government functions with complete success by the total separation of the Church from the State." — James Madison, 1819.
"The Government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion." — John Adams, the Treaty of Tripoli, 1798.
Right-wing Christians in this country, especially in our government, believe they have every right to put forth laws based on the Christian religion. I hear them scream time and time again, there is no such thing as separation of church and state, despite Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, James Madison, James Monroe and Thomas Paine using the phrase separation of church and state to describe the meaning behind the First Amendment. We have both, freedom of, and freedom from religion. No one should be allowed to force any form of religious ideology upon anyone else, and that includes those right-wing Christians in our governmental bodies.
I also hear Christians screaming about how the Muslims constantly want to install Sharia Law in our country. Yet? They have no damn problem wanting to install Christian Taliban laws in the United States. Now, the news breaks that Reince Priebus is frothing at the bit to start putting forth laws based on the Christian religion, against abortion, same-sex marriage, and many other things, as are many others like him.
Christians want to force into our public schools their religious ideology. They demand we bring prayer back to our public schools. Of course they hypocritically then strenuously object to having Ppgan religions, or any other religions other than Christianity be taught in our public schools. This is a clear violation of another of Thomas Jefferson's Acts titled the Elementary School Act of 1817, where he stated the Christians and all religions were to stay out of our public schools, that is what religious schools were for, not public. Public schools are run mostly with taxpayer funds, which automatically then forbids any religious ideology being pushed upon public school students, because of the separation of church and state law.
All of these acts are clear violations of the idea of the Founding Fathers and the separation of church and state. Religious belief, is in fact, an opinion. It is the theists opinion their religion is the right one out of the literal thousands of variations on the same theme. We do not have a theocratic government, we have a secular government. Secular means religion stays out.
As Jefferson said, your religion is between you and your God and does not belong in our laws, or legislative actions, or even in our public schools. Separation of church and state is a fact. I and many others are plain sick and tired of Christians trying to force their religious ideology upon the rest of us who want absolutely nothing to do with theirs, or any religion.
It is your right to have a religious belief, just like it is my right to not have one. But when your religious beliefs starts interfering with everyone's right, under the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, to their idea of life, liberty and their pursuit of happiness? That is when I and many others will in fact, draw a line and stand up and fight back.
Again, Christians scream how they do not want Muslim Taliban Sharia Law here in the United States. Well, there are many of us who do not want Christian Taliban Sharia Law here either, and we will fight, tooth and nail, against those who dare violate the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Separation of Church and State rules.
In closing, Thomas Jefferson also stated, in his Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, the most important law first, which is "II. Be it enacted by the General Assembly, that no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods."
So, keep your religious laws out of our government, our laws and our public schools.