Sunday, February 12, 2012

War on Religion? No, It's Self-Defense | Isa-Lee Wolf | Yahoo! Contributor Network

Fri, Feb 10, 2012

COMMENTARY | We're polite. We're inclusive, giving leeway for ideas not based in logic. We've held our tongues for fear of being offensive, for fear of piercing that bubble that surrounds it.

Yet here we are in a GOP primary with the candidates' religion seemingly discussed as much as their economic plans. Virginia's senate gave the green light to tax-funded groups prohibiting adoptions based on religious objections, reports the Times Dispatch. Oklahoma is considering a Personhood bill so draconian State Senator Constance Johnson has introduced an amendment to ensure that every sperm is sacred , as explained by Jezebel.

I'll say it and I won't say it nicely.

Get your grubby religious paws off of our Constitution. Get your small-minded pseudo-religious ways out of our legislative bodies, and for once, just for once, remember that the First Amendment has not one religion clause, but two: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.

You cannot use the might of the government to force other people to practice your religion. Why? It inherently infringes on my free exercise of my religion. If I must follow laws that, for example, codify conservatives' hatred for people who happen to love people of the same sex, it leaves no room for my own beliefs. If I cannot get contraception from the insurance plan for which I pay a premium because it conflicts with John Boehner's spewing of religious ideology, it hampers me from following my own ideology, which includes the notion that John Boehner is not the boss of my ovaries.

It is a hostile takeover of our nation, coated in sugary religiosity and fiery terms of right and wrong from people who, according to a Rasmussen poll , nearly half of likely voters think are corrupt. There is a difference between genuine faith and faith used as a sword; a means of coercion; a tool of capitulation.

How can I say such a bold, anti-religious thing? Don't I know that it's rude to use the words I'm about use in this sentence when I say these groups' illogical claims often conflict with their own dogma?

I'm going to tell you something, all of you who bemoan your perceived loss of a so-called Christian nation. We never had one. Ever. You cannot lose what you never had, and what you were specifically never meant to have.

How can I make this claim so boldly? I've actually read the Constitution. Every single word of it, and never once does it declare this country a religious anything. In fact, to make sure that the intent was clear, we have the very first clause of the very First Amendment stating that government cannot make laws endorsing religion. If it were a Christian nation, that would be an endorsement of Christianity.

It's that simple.

Can we have an endorsement of Christianity, or any religion for that matter? No, says the First Amendment. Problem solved.

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