March 04, 2006

Missouri’s official religion

Missouri legislators in Jefferson City considered a bill that would name Christianity the state's official "majority" religion. Nice to know that they remember the founding fathers decided to explicitly make church and state separate when they created the United States.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not really true prior to the passage of the 14th amendment. States (some) had (degrees of) establishment; the US couldn't. Good quick overview here:


5:22 pm  
Blogger tomdg said...

Yes, this is a stupid thing to legislate on. What on earth is the point?

I suspect it doesn't violate the constitution because it doesn't actually do anything - other than start an ungodly argument. I doubt they are trying to take control over the Christian churches in the state, or to give them any ex officio role in state governance.

Even so, the way "freedom of religion" is applied in the US is stupid. In some cases its interpretation prevents people following their religion, e.g. where their religeon involves proselytising. Freedom of religion does not mean enforcing atheism, capitalism and nationalism as a state "religion".

And when the founding fathers talked about one nation "under God", who were they thinking about? Not Allah, for certain, and not Richard Dawkins either.

But I'm all for separating church and state. I think they are natural enemies: an honest church will be a frequent critic of government policy, and the state demands obedience which only God deserves. When they get too close together, the inherent corruption of government tends to rub off on the church. As no doubt has happened in this situation.

1:16 pm  

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