Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

Like it or not: THIS IS a JUDEO-CHRISTIAN nation

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (Through 2005) Donate to DU
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:09 PM
Original message
Like it or not: THIS IS a JUDEO-CHRISTIAN nation
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 01:13 PM by Doohickie
Now, this isn't necessarily a bad thing, and I agree with all the stuff that states the government is supposed to be secular.

But... if you read ancient history, Rome ruled by force of power. Most ancient regimes did. Within the Roman Empire, there was one group of people who was found to be trustworthy enough to handle other people's money with integrity. They had a set of rules they followed that they took very seriously. This group was the diaspora of the Jewish people. To this day, Jewish people are over-represented in financial industries. They accomplished this not through some conspiracy but because they actually earned the trust of others.

Out of their ranks sprang a man who preached social consciousness and the responsibility we had to take care of each other, even the least among us. You know who- Jesus.

The followers of Judaism and of Christ had stumbled across a set of rules for social discourse that stressed integrity and and the value of every member of society. What started out as a radical concept became a large part of Western civilization.

Just as the Romans admired the Jews for their integrity in financial dealings, we can find much to admire in the teachings of the Judeo-Christian tradition. It is said that Jefferson took a Bible and cut out the miracle stories. The point is that he kept a large portion of it- the portion that is useful to society.

Whether you like Judaism and Christianity or not, many of socieity's rules concerning civil rights and social responsibilty came from the the Judeo-Christian tradition.

So from that standpoint, we adopted the best of Judeo-Christian culture, and the founding fathers declared these "self-evident" truths. To me, the fact that these truths exist and have been declared as such points to a higher power. However, I can see where other people could reach precisely the opposite conclusion. The founding fathers were similar, so they embraced those aspects of the Judeo-Christian tradition which were self-evident no matter what your spiritual beliefs and put up a wall against the spiritual aspects that might spoil that which is self-evident.

My own Presbyterian church recognizes this truth as self-evident. Although we try to bring what we feel to be Good News to others, we espouse in our Confessions the concept that "God alone is Lord of the conscience." While we may try to engage you and explain why we see things the way we do, we would never force you to espouse a belief in something that you just plain can't accept as true.

The faith of our fathers was instrumental in creating our founding documents. Whether they were Deists, Universalists, Quakers, Anglicans, Presbyterians, Lutherans, Jews or Catholics, they took that which they could agree to be self-evident and incorporated it into our Constitution. They understood how in this diversity of religious viewpoints, there was much common ground. That which they knew could be divisive, however, they left out. Thus there was a prohibition against the establishment of a state religion. In our unity was our strength: E pluribus unum.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
Maple Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:11 PM
Response to Original message
1. Apparently you are unaware
of all the law systems saying much the same thing long before Jesus was ever heard of.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Dora Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:12 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. Thank you, Maple.
sigh.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:16 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. I read a fair amount of history
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 01:17 PM by Doohickie
The Greeks were the first to put into place democracy as ruling the people with their fiat.

But by and large, rule was by rule of force, not rule by consent of the ruled or rule of justice.

I also realize that there are other traditions that espouse the best of Judeo-Christian values. But America was not settled by orientals with a Buddhist tradition; it was settled by Europeans with a Judeo-Christian tradition.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Maple Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:19 PM
Response to Reply #4
11. No, they weren't
Western history books simply start with them...leaving out hundreds of other cultures and laws.

Democracy was also around long before the Greeks.

And no culture has ever allowed murder, theft, assaults and so on...anarchy and/or simply doesn't work. It has nothing to do with 'Christian morality.'
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #11
25. Okay, then don't just dispute me,
Educate me. Which ancient people had utopian rule?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
BigMcLargehuge Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:01 PM
Response to Reply #25
64. he didn't say they had utoptian rule
he said they democratic traditions.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:32 PM
Response to Reply #64
200. Okay, fine, whatever
Please, tell me, what other civilizations had democratic traditions?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Maple Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:22 PM
Response to Reply #25
146. Sorry, had to go out
and I gather, from a quick scan, that you've been corrected on utopian and anarchy.

Your and our society are based on a combination of pre-Christian justice, values and ideas,..Saxons, Danes, Celts, Angles etc, Iroquois federation ideas, Greek democratic principles, Roman militarism, Chinese dynastys, and pagan ideals of freedom. Plus the Code of Hammurabi, the Edicts of Asoka, the Laws of Manu and many other justice systems.....they all say pretty much the same thing, and pre-date Christianity or Judaism.

Sumaria managed just fine without Christians.

Morality and common sense in running a society are not exclusively a 'western' concept. And certainly not just American.

You were built by all kinds of immigrants from every traditon the world has ever had.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
progressiveBadger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:18 PM
Response to Reply #146
159. Ever read Ishmael?
I think you might find it interesting...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
el_gato Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #11
45. If you are going to use this word please define it

Anarchy, will you please define what you mean by this term.


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kiki Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:53 PM
Response to Reply #45
99. Anarchy gets a bad rep...
To paraphrase Alan Moore, anarchy means "without leader", NOT "without order". "Anarchy" and "chaos" are two different - and arguably opposite - things.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
el_gato Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:57 PM
Response to Reply #99
130. exactly
Anarchy means an absence of authority, not chaos.
We had anarchy for thousands of years, while humanity lived
in balance with nature. That ended about 10000 years ago.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Hephaistos Donating Member (137 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:06 PM
Response to Reply #130
186. ...in balance with nature...
You mean that in the Hobbesian way, right?

Have you seen the documentaries of chimps making war?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:25 PM
Response to Reply #11
162. One of the first questions
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 05:28 PM by KCabotDullesMarxIII
of a Christian bishop put to the Pope of the day, in the train of Charlemagne's conquest of much of Europe, admittedly by the edge of the sword, was how to treat the sale of a slave for human sacrifice. The reply was "As murder". I think if I'd been a pagan, particularly a female or a child, I'd have been very grateful the Christian ruler prevailed and imposed Christianity, in place of the particular pagan religion or religions in place, edge of the sword or not.

Before Christianity, all religions seemed to believe in human sacrifice. Certainly in Europe. Women and chldren, I believe tended to be the favoured victims. Prior, at least to their evangelisation, when a viking chief died, a young maiden would be knifed by an old crone, experienced in the job. I read of one such occasion in Russia, when the girl, realising what was to happen, was too terrified to move. And now "paganism chic" is all the rage.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:37 PM
Response to Reply #162
168. "Christians" haven't all been saints, either.
Like the Puritans killing Quakers and Witches and people who did not conform to their way of thinking/believing.


So maybe people should throw out ALL religions and start over.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:37 PM
Response to Reply #168
202. If you read my essay, that is exactly what I said the framers did...
They kept the self-evident and omitted the spiritual beliefs.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 12:03 PM
Response to Reply #168
224. Then you
end up with Hitlers, Stalins and Pol Pots.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:33 PM
Response to Reply #224
238. And what do have now
people following Bush**.


I think people could do better.



Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 07:34 AM
Response to Reply #238
240. A major part of the problem is that
Edited on Thu Nov-18-04 07:47 AM by KCabotDullesMarxIII
atheists in bad faith, some of whom clearly have the limited agenda of some form or other of sexual licence, and are not in least interested in economic justice, play into the hands of the neocons and their "fundies".

These can then "divide and rule"; setting Democrat atheists and agnostics (many of the latter, at least, nevertheless "in good faith" from a spiritual perspective) against the genuine, mainstream Christians in your country. These would want the country's ethos based on Christian values, rather than those of another non-European culture or, by far the worst, a chaotic ethos in which eveyone makes up their own moral or immoral code.

Of course, that does not mean that the faith or otherwise of adults would, in principle even, be subject to government control, even ideally. Though I believe the teaching of mainstream Christianity to everyone (in both our countries) in our schools should be compulsory; mainstream Christianity properly being a far cry from the cosmetic, pharisaic, indeed devilish masquerade of Christianity, which aims solely at partisan political power and worldly power and wealth.

I don't mean either that the children of immigrants and people of other cultures and faiths should not be allowed to attend their own religious schools. Simply that to understand our culture and have a chance of assimilating into it at some later date, or indeed in some later generation, an hour or so each week should be set aside for such Christian instruction.


Incidentally, aren't the "fundies" aberrant baptists, schismatic baptists? Someone on this board wrote yesterday that mainstream baptists are *for* separation of church and state for the same reasons that many of you are. Because of the wholesale abuse of Christianity by worldlings among the leaders of the churches over here, in the "old world" that they had come from, conniving and colluding with their national political establishments.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Mandate My Ass Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:55 PM
Response to Reply #162
181. Since Christianity
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 06:03 PM by Mandate My Ass
we've had the Inquisition, the Crusades, the Burning Times, the Salem Witch hunts, Church support for slavery, Church silence on the holocaust, not to mention pogroms and various other purges of heathens and infidels, many of which targeted women and children, but who's counting?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:06 PM
Response to Reply #162
185. The Romans didn't
when they conquered Britain, they were appalled by the human sacrifice by the Druids, and set about killing all of them so they couldn't do it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 12:33 PM
Response to Reply #185
226. Although the Romans,

indeed all the gentiles, were considered by the Jews in New Testament times to be a byword for cruelty (hence the Jewish leaders asked the Romans to crucify Christ), the extract below from a Wikipedia article on the Romans' attitude to human sacrifice, in principle, at least, substantiates the truth of your post concerning the attitude of the Romans to the human sacrifices offered by the Celtic druids.

"Early Romans practiced various forms of human sacrifice in their first centuries; from Etruscans (or, according to other sources, Sabellians), they adopted the original form of gladiatorial combat where the victim was slain in a ritual battle. During the early republic, criminals who had broken their oaths or defrauded others were sometimes "given to the gods" (that is, executed as a human sacrifice). Prisoners of war and Vestal virgins were buried alive as offerings to Manes and Dil Inferi (infernal gods). Archaeologists have found sacrificial victims buried in building foundations. Ordinarily, deceased Romans were cremated rather than buried.

Religious practices changed over the centuries. According to Pliny, human sacrifice was abolished by a senatorial decree in 97 BCE".

No date is given for the cessation of human sacrifices by the Ancient Greeks, although it is contended by some scholars, that since the accounts of their being performed by the Phoenicians and the Carthaginians, were related by Romans, it may have been propaganda.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Mandate My Ass Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:41 PM
Response to Reply #162
189. Answer the questions below to you first post, KCDMII
Maybe then we can take your spam seriously.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Joe Chi Minh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 12:40 PM
Response to Reply #189
228. Patience,
Edited on Wed Nov-17-04 12:42 PM by KCabotDullesMarxIII
patience....

Oh, and ...what's the magic word?

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:31 PM
Original message
Europeans who promptly set about annihilating the indigenous...
...people whose social order had served them for millenia....
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:35 PM
Original message
Just because they didn't have fire arms
does not mean they didn't go about annihilating each other. War was known in the Americas prior to the Europeans.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:44 PM
Response to Original message
48. oh, I didn't mean to suggest that it wasn't.....
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 01:44 PM by mike_c
Rather, I meant that it's all too easy to forget that the Judeo-Christian values the Europeans brought were deeply flawed and remain so to this day, and that they were certainly not superior to the Amerindian social social orders that they so violently supplanted.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:42 PM
Response to Original message
43. the indigenous people were well anihilated long befor this nation
was founded. They had no resistance to the deseases brought over by the men who sailed with columbus.
We sure did continue to do a number on them though didn't we? But I don't think that has much to do with the original posters assertion. The fact that sometimes europeans are bad people doesn't change history.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
el_gato Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:45 PM
Original message
Not true

There was an active campaign to destroy native North Americans that is well documented and took place after 1776.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:53 PM
Response to Original message
56. read again
the major part of the native american population was already gone. If they had not been the Pilgrims would have had no semi cleared land to settle on. Millions of native americans were wiped out before the pilgrims ever landed, perhaps 2/3 of the population. If you study Geographical Sociology you learn that in college.
That doesn't mean we didn't heard those remaining onto reservations and practice a fair amount of "ethnic" cleansing. But that really has nothing to do with the topic at hand does it?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:59 PM
Response to Reply #56
59. Not even close to accurate
One needs to recognize that this nation started off as 13 "colonies," or states. What you are saying is not true.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #59
68. exuse me but your response seems to have nothing to do with my post
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 02:06 PM by Cheswick2.0
please explain. What I said about the native population is completely true. Ask a sociologist.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:10 PM
Original message
I don't need to .....
it's not anything that I need to depend on anyone else for information on. In fact, what I said has everything to do with correcting the silly thing you wrote. The colonists and earier "pilgrams" did impact specific peoples on the east coast.
The Spanish in Central America had an impact on the Meso-American population, and even Florida. But it was a big world.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Pithlet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:18 PM
Response to Original message
77. Apparently
Things magically become correct based on who you're responding to. The actual facts stated in the post are irrelevant, silly :silly:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
el_gato Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:35 PM
Response to Original message
89. Exactly true H20

There was a systematic campaign of genocide that took place in this country well after the "official" founding of this country.
Ignorance is bliss I guess.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:36 PM
Response to Reply #89
92. "ask a sociologist"
my goodness.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Pithlet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:04 PM
Response to Reply #56
66. You may be right
about your numbers in part, but I think it is irrelevant to the discussion, in fact. The fact that of millions indigenous people were already gone when the papers were signed doesn't bolster the argument that their societies had little or no influence whatsoever on what our country has become, or whether or not any of the Founding Fathers would have learned anything from them, even if they would never give them credit. Millions still remained at that time period, at any rate, so I think you're wrong in more ways than one.

The nation's birth and evolution to the country it is today actually took longer than a few days. It started long before the founding fathers' actions, and continued long after that. Women and minorities may have been horribly disenfranchised in history, but that doesn't mean we had nothing to do with the principles this country was founded on, or contributed in any way to what it has become.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #66
72. I was simply answering someone elses post
and stating facts.
The point I did make about what influenced our founding was that the government structure we settled on was exactly like that of the calvinist churches the founders had been raised in. It seems to me a much more obvious explanation of where our government structure came from.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Pithlet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:17 PM
Response to Reply #72
75. And I was responding to your post.
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 02:26 PM by Pithlet
Your statements about history are and were incorrect, regardless of who you were responding to.

I think what is confusing me is the context of this discussion. I don't understand why you're arguing their numbers to begin with. I still think you're wrong, but I may be incorrect that your argument is that they could have had little or no infuence. I'm not sure why that was brought up.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #72
81. Self deleted.
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 02:27 PM by Doohickie
Dupe... sorry
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Pithlet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:29 PM
Response to Reply #81
84. It does not point to evidence that this is a Christian Nation.
based on Christian principles. The Brits probably called the Revolution all kinds of things. They weren't too happy about it, after all. I guess I'm giving the context of this thread entirely too much weight. I'm not sure why this stuff is being brought up, unless it's as evidence that this country was founded on Christianity, since that is what this thread is about.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #72
82. Actually, the Calvinist link is true
The Brits called the Revolution "the Presbyterian Revolt" and the Constitution does include many parallels to Presbyterian Church polity. This, however, is not so much an attempt to make America a theocracy is it was an attempt to correct the flawed hierarchical church structure; in essence, the Presbyterians "secularized" their church government, understanding that people are flawed and need checks and balances.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Pithlet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:31 PM
Response to Reply #82
86. Just so it isn't confusing for others.
The deleted post that I responded to above was the same one as this one I'm responding to now. It was a dupe.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #82
90. That's not a secret
to anyone who has studied the Revolutionary War.

Now, who influenced the Presbyterians? Just for fun, take a few weeks to study the era just before the Revolutionary War. In particular, if you want to find the truth, study the major trading patterns between NYC, Albany, the German Flats area, and the Fort Stanwick's Treaty. Look into who it was that were the leading figures in the "trading post" settlements that led to the Palantine German families going into Pennsylvania, and who it was that Jefferson, Franklin, and other "Founding Fathers" met with near Philly in the years leading up to the war.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:49 PM
Response to Reply #43
53. hi ches....
I was responding to the suggestion that the JC tradition was somehow superior to other world views, and in particular to the absence of recognition that the Europeans who brought it here violently displaced other social orders that were no less well developed and "moral." Failure to recognize that is also a bit revisionist, at least by neglect.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kcwayne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:20 PM
Response to Reply #43
113. Huh? Was Custer annihilated by angry settlers with deep tans?
I am unaware of any historical evidence that suggests diseases spread by the Spanish in the Caribbean and Central America affected the tribes in Canada, New England, the Mid West, or Western tribes.

As far as I have learned, the Iroquois, Mohawk, Fox, Chippewa, Illini, Cherokee, Sioux, Cheyenne, and many other North American tribes were eradicated by the French, English, and other Northern European settlers, not by Columbus or Conquistadors. Disease was a factor, but so was the US Army.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Dora Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #4
101. America was already "settled" before the Plymouth Rock landing
There were already multiple cultures and societies living and thriving in the geographical expanse we call the United States.

We weren't "settled by Europeans." This land was invaded, stolen, and its original occupants were killed, starved, sold into slavery, and otherwise given the really short end of the stick. Have you ever visted a reservation? I grew up in Arizona. I know what we did to the original settlers.

For as much pride as we need to have in our American history, we also need to have the humility to acknowledge that our forefathers did a lot of things very, very wrong, and that following Judeo-Christian values did not help matters.

Between the English and the Spanish, our historical karma is stained for a hell of a long time.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Trajan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:22 PM
Response to Reply #4
160. You select ONE aspect of the governmental system ...
'consent', and attribute it to a set of 'judeo-christian' values allegedly promulgated by the founding fathers .... But one can easily make the case that the notion of 'consent' was NOT based on any specific 'judeo-christian' value, but was indeed a RADICAL DEPARTURE from such 'values' ...

Men like Locke, Paine, Rousseau, Hobbes, et al, REJECTED the rule of kings, which was the system supported and condoned by 'judeo-christian values' for over a millenae ... They instead promoted a RADICAL shift in how we rule ourselves ... they went AGAINST the status quo established by the 'judeo-christian' plutarchs through the ages ....

Maybe you should read some of these titans: you would get a HUGELY different picture of WHO they were: Paine himself DESPISED the church and christians in general ... Thomas Jefferson made it VERY clear how he felt about the organized church, and expressed a set of DEISTIC values, which were common in the Enlightenment Era, which, I might add, was heretical under the so called 'judeo-christian' system of Europe ....

You PRAISE "Europe" as the source of these values, yet those who came here FLED Europe because it SUPPRESSED Freedom .... They RAN from the organized governments who held 'judeo-christian values' to live in 'freedom' ...

Unfortunately: even the earliest settlers were religious fanatics themselves who were as sectarian as the states they left ....

Your claims are laughable .... inside and out ....
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:34 PM
Response to Reply #160
165.  Like the Quakers who were executed for being Quakers in 1660
in Massachusetts - by the Puritans.


There were plenty of things like that going on over here to want to write religion out of the Constitution.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
KnowerOfLogic Donating Member (841 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 07:39 PM
Response to Reply #4
193. Is that why they created an aristocracy of race and sex?
Was that based on "Judeo-Christian values?" Actually, I guess it was; all more reason to dump this tradition. What are you? a conservative? Seems like they are the ones who are always trying to justify present injustices by saying that it was done that way in the past. I don't really give a flip who founded this country and what their particular ignorances were; every american value must be justified today, in the here and now, on the basis its merits.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Betty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 08:03 AM
Response to Reply #4
217. Was this country really "settled" by Christians
when the Native Americans were already here? Don't you think they had a pretty established moral code that had nothing to do with Christianity? I suppose one could argue that since we've pretty much oblieterated that culture and segregated them onto their reservations, the prevailing "morality" of our country is Christian. I wonder what kind of society we'd have if that had not happned.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mogster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 08:45 AM
Response to Reply #4
220. The Norwegian Vikings discovered US before Columbus
They were bloodlusty heathens that had already developed zero tolerance for rightwing fundamentalists.
So make ready for Odin, Thor and the Loke - it's all about drinking beer, screwing and sword fights! No fun! ;-)

No, but to be serious: US is a mix of the whole world's population, no Judeo-Christian (pack away the populist terms, will ya?) supremacist prick can lay sole claim on the country.

In fact, the world sees the US as it's finest product - the spearhead of our common exodus, so to speak. To the average American, the roots is evident and probably makes for an excuse to make a trip abroad now and then.
Not so with the average rightwing Judeo-Christian moron, to busy plotting and scheming to position himself within his inbred stock to lift the head and look above his belly-button.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
yella_dawg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 12:36 PM
Response to Reply #4
227. As a Native American
I beg to differ with your use of the word "settle". We were kinda here first. That would make it "took". Judeo-Christians taking from others. Yeah, that seems in character.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Neshanic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:21 PM
Response to Reply #1
79. Thank you Maple.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
patcox2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #1
136. Christianity did establish a different ethos
Your vague reference to "all the law systems" that did the same thing left me mystified (but then again, so did most of the original posters remarks).

There was a different ethos among the mediterranean and european pagans prior to christianity. Morality was based more on a "heroic" model, might truly did make right. Heroes, "big men," were almost godlike, little people were insignificant. Egalitarianism was very much rarer than it became under chrisitianity, and christianity did take and build upon the strong traditions of social justice which started with the ancient jews.

Of course this was different in other parts of the world; Buddha had already taught his similar ethics prior to Jesus.

But the original post was true to the extent he was trying to say that our culture is so pervasively influenced by the judeo-christian worldview that it is almost impossible, from within our culture, for most people to see the extent of it.

The fact that christian ethical ideals are more often honored in the breach than the observance takes nothing away from this; thats why they are ideals.


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
eataTREE Donating Member (488 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:12 PM
Response to Original message
2. Dude, I so hope you are wearing your asbestos trousers.
Question: By the terms you've described, wouldn't it be just as accurate to describe the USA as a "Greco-Roman Nation?" Because modern Western civilization surely owes as much to Classical philosophy and scholarship as it does to the Judeo-Christian tradition.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:17 PM
Response to Reply #2
6. We always forget the Iroquois Confederacy and its influence
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 01:19 PM by Union Thug
on the US constitution. How connnnveeeeeenient.

edit: bad bad use of apostrophe.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:31 PM
Response to Reply #6
26. To be honest, I haven't heard of this....
care to fill me in (or provide a link)?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #26
35. This is kind of a cool link... broken up into a curriculum plan..
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 01:54 PM by Union Thug
http://www.iroquoisdemocracy.pdx.edu /

It doesn't provide all the details, but gives subject matter on which to research...

This is interesting: http://tuscaroras.com/graydeer/influenc/page1.htm
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:06 PM
Response to Reply #35
69. You could also read
the 9-87 National Geographic, which includes articles by friend Harvey Arden about the early United States and the Iroquois. Further information can be found by reading cousin Oren Lyons' writings; Oren, who worked for the NYS University in Buffalo, is an Onondaga Chief, who sits on the Haudenosaunee's Grand Council of Chiefs; also see writings of Chiefs Jake Swamp, Mohawk; Irving Powless, Onondaga; and a number of books available through Syracuse University Press.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:49 PM
Response to Reply #69
96. thank you, H20 Man!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:40 PM
Response to Reply #96
122. You are most welcome.
This is an important topic. Many of the things we've been led to believe are simply no so. And other things we've never been exposed to are historical truth. I'd note that when Bill Moyers, who is indeed an intelligent man, wanted to learn more about the influence of the Iroquois, he traveled to Oren's home. Bill did a heck of a show with an interview with Oren on a series back around 1990.

Often it is not really complicated .... people are viewing many of the same "facts" .... but just like it makes sense for white folks to talk to black folk to understand the black experience, it really is okay to talk to Indians. It's safe. Bill survived it. Oren didn't hurt him. Bill even learned a great deal.

I would encourage people to read "A Basic Call to Consciousness." It's the Haudenosaunne position paper delivered to the Non-Governmental Organizations of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, in September of 1977.

While I think DUers should read "sociologists," and learn to recognize them, I quote from the BCTC: "What follows are not the research products of psychiatrists, historians, or anthropologists. The papers which follow are he first authentic analyses of the modern world ever committed to writing by an official body of Native people."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:38 PM
Response to Reply #6
39. It is hard to make a case for the exact influence of the Iriquois
when our political structure is almost exactly the same as the political structure of the Presbyterian church .... of which both Jefferson (at times, when he was not attending the Unitarian church) and Madison (and his mentor Witherspoon, the Presby pastor and signer of the constitution) were members.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:01 PM
Response to Reply #39
63. No, it's not.
There is plenty of informataion available for anyone who is interested, although it requires the ability to spell Iroquois.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
datasuspect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:37 PM
Response to Reply #39
119. it's equally hard
to make a case for a case for the influence of any of the indigenous peoples on this continent because they were by and large considered SAVAGES that needed christianity sufficient to turn them into at least third class citizens.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:45 PM
Response to Reply #119
124. It's not hard
with people who are capable of reading. There is more than enough information out there for people who are serious to learn from. If a person even reads Nash's "Red, White, and Black," which should be read in an introductory course on colonial times, clarifies the true relationship betwenn early peoples. I agree that some people with closed minds still cling to faded lies about this country's early history.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Maat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #2
10. I appreciate the responses to this ... ummm .. initial post.
Read the Treaty of Tripoli and the Letter to the Danbury Baptists. While certain priniciples the founding fathers considered may have been commented upon in the Bible, there is no justification for saying that we are a 'Judeo-Christian nation," as that implies that those religions were meant to be state-sponsored, and that is just not true.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:23 PM
Response to Reply #10
16. It doesn't imply that at all
The founders made it very clear this is a secular nation with laws protecting the separation of state and clergy/church. But to pretend that a people who were overwhelmingly Judeo-Christian in their culture did not use those same principals when forming the nation is not rational.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Djinn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:37 PM
Response to Reply #16
169. the point people are making is those "principles"
were around in MANY cultures before Judaism and Christianity - the "principles" talked about here didn't spring fully formed out Jesus.

Both Judaism and Christianity (as laid out in the Bible anyway) support many non "democratic" ideals.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:34 PM
Response to Reply #10
30. A question of definition:
"there is no justification for saying that we are a 'Judeo-Christian nation," as that implies that those religions were meant to be state-sponsored, and that is just not true."

How do you get that from my assertion that America has Judeo-Christian roots it naturally follows "that those religions were meant to be state-sponsored"? I don't think that is what I said at all.

Please don't confuse my little essay with statements made by Dominionists or whatever. I do not at all espouse their views.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:19 PM
Original message
Don't worry, the asbestos undies are in place
I agree that there is a significant Greco-Roman tradition in place too. But as I pointed out, even the Roman tradition was influenced by Judeo-Christian sensibilities.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:30 PM
Response to Reply #2
116. Not to mention Indo-Arabic
whose contributions are often left out of history books...


I think the Judeo-Christian argument is simply made to keep the status quo going and to be able to shrug off any differences of opinion - whether supported by science or reasoning or anything else.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:17 PM
Response to Original message
5. Eh. I guess once you water some concept down to "Judeo-Christian
culture", you aren't even talking about religion at all, so calling the US a Judeo Christian Nation (which is what "Christian Nation" becomes when there is a Jew in the room, proving that people aren't so much providing a concept as a PR slogan) isn't so much wrong as useless.

It might be better to skip trying to give credit to specific religions, since you claim the truths to be self evident.



Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:24 PM
Response to Reply #5
17. You make a good point with respect to
skipping the credit. I think the point is that the basic freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution are self-evident. I also think, however, that in the wake of the Reformation, there was a close examination of Christianity and people keenly sifted through it to see where it had gone wrong. When you take away Divine Right of rule and look instead at Christ's words (and not what the church says about them), you get something that naturally looks much like our current government.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:36 PM
Response to Reply #17
36. It seems you are interested in congratulating Christianity.
I don't know whether you are talking about structure or policies, but there isn't anything in Christ's words that get you a US polity. Granted, a liberal democracy is more likely to provide for its citizenry and approach all sorts of ideals, christianity included, then a oriental despotism or Stalinist bureaucratic nightmare, but that's saying practically nothing at all===again.

By the way, if the basic freedoms of the Constitution are self evident, then why did our christian forebears neglect to apply them to slaves? It seems that mere christianity didn't supply a lot of the detail then, and it doesn't now.

There's a reason why our fat conservative preachers go to old testament diatribes when they want to bring morality into government. It is easier to pull a prohibition from two thousand years ago than figure out how Christians make a government out of the Beatitudes.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:30 PM
Response to Reply #36
85. "then why did our christian forebears neglect to apply them to slaves?"
They were, in fact, self-evident, which is why abolition of slavery was inevitable.

I kind of think it is self-evident that reliance on fossil fuels is a dead end, but you don't turn a battleship around on a dime.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
noiretextatique Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:01 PM
Response to Reply #85
104. inevitable...it only took a few centuries +
it seems y'alls xtian forebearers weren't particularly bright. not much seems to have changed in that area.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
datasuspect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #85
121. yes, the abolition of slavery
was inevitable.

200 or so years inevitable
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 07:37 AM
Response to Reply #85
215. Inevitable? Not to the hundreds of thousands of slavery adherents,
that we had to kill while they defended destroying the Union rather than have the institution of slavery limited or eliminated. It seems to me that if you have to kill someone in order to change their mind about slavery, it isn't self evident. Union victory wasn't even inevitable.

I suggest to you that you are a little promiscuous with the term "self evident". Declaring a value self evident doesn't make it so, and you seem to be using the term mostly to avoid the time and trouble of convincing those to whom it isn't evident at all.

Once again, I think you are more interested in congratulating christianity than looking at it, so much so that you can't acknowledge the lapse of slavery without dismissing it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
immoderate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #5
32. "when there is a Jew in the room" LOL
Additionally, weren't the nations of Europe, that we broke with, Christian, even more Christian? Weren't the kings empowered directly by the Christan god?

--IMM
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:04 PM
Response to Reply #32
67. Yeah, the European nations were Christian--but the wrong kind of Christian
I guess that crediting Chrisitianity for our form of government and society runs up against the fact that other European nations didn't manage it in the 1300 or so years of Christianity.

If Christian religion is what brought us democracy, then the only explanation is that Europe had the wrong kind of Christianity. Which would lead us to conclude that democracy is a low church Protestant invention, and that Catholics and Anglicans held it back, hardly the purpose behind a make nice, let's all pat ourselves on the back slogan like "Our nation is a Judeo Christian culture".

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:32 PM
Response to Reply #32
87. Divine Right rule was a flawed system
and it was apparent. Just as the church was reformed to correct abuses of power and authority, so too was the U.S. an attempt to reform government.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:45 PM
Response to Reply #5
50. you really can't separate Judeo from Christian
whether there is a jew in the room or not. You also can't really separate the founders from their religion or culture.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:51 PM
Response to Reply #50
54. Um. Yes, you can. It is donet every Sunday morning and Friday night.
But if we, again, want to water down concepts into this "Judeo Christian culture" mishmosh, then yeah, they are "the same" in a very shallow sense.

And while I can't separate the founders from the their religion or culture, what that culture was, and which aspect of the culture affected their views on government, are very much part of this dispute.

Again, it seems like there is little going on besides congratulating Christianity for something it really can't take all the credit for.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:59 PM
Response to Reply #54
61. sorry but you are wrong
speaking as someone who attends church every sunday, you can not separate the basic philosophy of Christ from what he was raised with.

But there is no congratualtions going on here, just a simple relating of rational history. Do you really think that a culture so overwhelminly Christian formed a nation founded on anything but the principals the people were raised with? That makes no sense.
That is different from saying we are a christian theocracy isn't it?

BTW..... did you know that the main sorce if funds for the revolution was a Jewish community in NY? That is why Washington made certain to let them know that they had a place here in American society that could not be take from them and that they were not to be treated as they had in Europe, but as full citizens of the new land.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:14 PM
Response to Reply #61
74. Watered down some more. Fact is, we do separate and are careful to do so.
Watering down to some unstated "basic philosophies" doesn't change the fact that the differences are sufficient to cause Christians and Jews to belong to different religions, no matter what you say.

To state that the nation was found with the principles with which the founders were raised is another meaningless statement, this time a tautology. Their principles included slavery. If the founders were Christian, and owned slaves, therefore slavery is a principle of christianity. It isn't, of course, because you can't put the entire weight of the founders' acts on christianity. That in itself proves there was something else going on. Since we can trace both the language of the declaration to Locke and the federal structure to other enlightment figures, and slavery to the bible, we could have a really bloody go round. But let's not.

And yes, I know there was a Jewish Community in New York. Puritans in Massachusetts, Catholics in Maryland, Quakers in Pennsylvania. Doesn't change much. The colonies all started out with established religions. That, too, is one of the way chrisitianity operates.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
amber dog democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:17 PM
Response to Original message
7. I thought the founding fathers were deists
and never intended to legitimize or promote any particular aspect of religion.
I do not agree this is a Judeo-Christian nation. Especially today.
I appreciate the tolerance and respect I sense in the thrust of this arguement, but I don't at all think we are anything like a nation founded on theocratic principles.

Also what about the indigenous inhabitants ?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
fugue Donating Member (846 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:27 PM
Response to Reply #7
20. Certainly Jefferson was a deist
He compared the story of the virgin birth to the Roman goddess Minerva springing out of her father's head (her father being Jupiter). He thought that some day they would be treated as similarly untrue.

I can dig up the quote if anyone is interested. It was in a letter he was writing to John Adams, who was a Unitarian (also not a Christian).
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:34 PM
Response to Reply #20
29. No Jefferson was a Presbyterian (sometimes Unitarian.)
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 01:48 PM by Cheswick2.0
He may also have had some diest beliefs...which is not inconsistant with being a Presbyterian or Unitarian (there was no universalists at that time and therefor the Unitarians were Christians...just different denominations getting together to fight for one team so to speak). Even if you reject the idea of God controling all aspects of your life, you don't necessarity reject the teachings of Christ about how we should live in the world and treat each other.
The founders made it very clear that these principals were important to them.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
fugue Donating Member (846 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:56 PM
Response to Reply #29
154. No, Jefferson was a deist
Sorry, but you're wrong. Jefferson was a deist. He did not believe in the divinity of Jesus. Presbyterians do.

http://www.deism.com

The Religious Life of Thomas Jefferson by Charles Sanford: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/081391131...

The quote from the letter to Adams (April 11, 1823):

And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
rogerashton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:34 PM
Response to Reply #20
31. Not -- quite.
The congregationalist grouping Adams belonged to gave rise to Unitarianism, but not all congregations made that turn -- and early Unitarians (pre-Emerson) thought of themselves as Christians -- and if you learn more about Adams, it is clear he thought of himself as a Christian. It is true, though, that a 21st century Fundie would not regard Adams as a Christian.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:28 PM
Response to Reply #7
21. The founding fathers were not homogenious
They came from many walks of life. One of the signers of the Declaration of Independence was a Presbyterian minister.

Also, I did not say that the nation was founded on theocratic principles. If you look at my posts, you see that I am a church-going moderate, but certainly not a fundy.

My point in my original post was that there is a large influence from the Judeo-Christian tradition on our founding documents, and notwithstanding the current assault on civil liberties by the religious right, this is not a bad thing.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
amber dog democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:42 PM
Response to Reply #21
44. Granted there is some linkage to the religious traditions from
Protestant Europeans to some of the cultural norms on the Eastern Seaboard from the late 16th C onward. Dutch, English, and other European citizens carried with them their cultural traditions and beliefs - I am just thinking it is a far stretch to generalize that our nation today is as an institutionally based Judeo-Christian country,

There is an arguement that we are also secular in nature. I'd like to see it stay that way.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #7
24. no they were not deists
Only Franklin ever made such a claim. Plus Deism and Christianity are not mutually exlusive. They seemed the pretty average garden variety Christian, questioning everything and rejecting somethings of faith while rejecting others.
Remember that these well educated men studied everything they knew about greek-roman culture and philosophy at Christian colleges and schools. Madison, studied under another founder and signer of the constitution who was a Presbyterian Pastor.
The OP didn't say anything about theocratic principals.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
LisaLynne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:17 PM
Response to Original message
8. Just not true.
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 01:22 PM by LisaLynne
This isn't intended as a flame, but this is just not true:

"many of socieity's rules concerning civil rights and social responsibilty came from the the Judeo-Christian tradition."

Most of the things Jesus supposedly said had been part of philosophical discourse and theory (for lack of a better word) for a very long time before he supposedly was born, as were many of the tales recorded in the Old Testament. I don't point this out to discredit Christianity, but people do need to have a better knowledge of history.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GreenPartyVoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:18 PM
Response to Original message
9. Actually, what we recognize as universal morals :don't kill, don't steal
etc are the foundations of our nation. We are not a theocracy, and Christianity is not the only faith to lay claim to morality.

-----------------------------------
Would Jesus love a liberal? You bet!
http://timeforachange.bluelemur.com /
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Anakin Skywalker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:15 PM
Response to Reply #9
158. Thank You! That Needed to Be Said.
:)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
denverbill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:19 PM
Response to Original message
12. No, it's a Protestant nation.
I don't recall any Jews among the Founding Fathers or Pilgrims. Not many Catholics either, I'd venture.

I do recall several original state constitutions required their elected officials to be Protestant however.

I guess if we want to honor the wishes of the Founding Fathers we should get Catholics and Jews out of govt.

http://members.tripod.com/~candst/cnstntro.htm

# The New Jersey Constitution of 1776 restricted public office to all but Protestants by its religious test/oath.
# The Delaware Constitution of 1776 demanded an acceptance of the Trinity by its religious test/oath.
# The Pennsylvania Constitution of 1776 had a similar test/oath.
# The Maryland Constitution of 1776 had such a test/oath.
# The North Carolina Constitution of 1776 had a test/oath that restricted all but Protestants from public office.
# The Georgia Constitution of 1777 used an oath/test to screen out all but Protestants.
# The Vermont state charter/constitution of 1777 echoed the Pennsylvania Constitution regarding a test/oath.
# The South Carolina Constitution of 1778 had such a test/oath allowing only Protestants to hold office.
# The Massachusetts Constitution of 1780 and New Hampshire Constitution of 1784 restricted such office holders to Protestants.
# Only Virginia and New York did not have such religious tests/oaths during this time period.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:02 PM
Response to Reply #12
65. Jews actually funded the revolution
But calling something Judeo-Christian simply expresses the fact the Christianity is directly linked to Judaism regardless of the anti semitism rampant in the world during that time and later.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
denverbill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:58 PM
Response to Reply #65
103. By the same line of reasoning then, Saudi Arabia is Judeo-Christian.
After all, they worship the God of Abraham, and believe Jesus was a great Prophet. We could say they are a Judeo-Christian-Muslim nation. But we never hear that said, probably because it would lessen Christians claims to being the inheritors of the 'chosen people' label.

It hard for me to buy that line of reasoning. The reason Christians are Christians and not Jews is because they believe Jesus brought them a 'new covenant', which abolished Jewish laws except for the 10 Commandments. We eat pork and shellfish, we do all sorts of things proscribed by the Old Testament, solely because we are supposed to have a different deal with God. It's the rejection of Judeaic traditions and holidays and laws that make Christians Christians, just as it's the rejection of Catholic doctrine that makes Protestants Protestants.

No, the US is a Protestant nation. They didn't want the Pope ordering them around anymore than they wanted the head of the Anglican Church (King George III) ordering them around, much less paying any attention to people who don't even believe in Christ's divinity. About all we've taken that's Judaic is the 10 Commandments (a few of which are actually even codified in our laws as illegal but many of which aren't ), a storybook about creation, people getting swallowed by whales, great floods, etc, and a Holy Land. We've probably inherited more from European paganism.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:20 PM
Response to Original message
13. OR
Just like the Republicans of today, our founding fathers knew that the best way to get people to follow you was to invoke religion. What better way to convince the people to throw off the rule of the Kings and the Anglican Church? Claim a higher authority.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kcwayne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:21 PM
Response to Original message
14. Nice Spin
you conveniently leave out the contributions of the Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Assyrians, Egyptians, Babylonians, Mesopotamians, Chinese, Indians, and others that contributed to the evolution of societal ideas over the 3000 years of recorded history that preceded Christianity.

Moses didn't come down from the mountain with a tablet of commandments having gone up there illiterate. The invention of writing preceded him by a couple of thousand years. Those people intelligent enough to come up with those ideas of making communication transportable had ideas that were borrowed from heavily by the tribes of Israel and the early Christians. They did not invent as much as they institutionalized, and as the fortunes of empires go, those Judeo-Christian institutions have survived as winners.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
wickywom Donating Member (383 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #14
46. Amen !
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
noiretextatique Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:02 PM
Response to Reply #14
106. psst...
i don't think the poster knows about them.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Technowitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:23 PM
Response to Original message
15. Sorry, but I don't buy this argument
First of all, a great many of the so-called 'founding fathers' were in fact Free Masons (a decidedly non-Christian faith). A number of others were atheists or agnostics.

Secondly, you say that this is a "Judeo-Christian Nation" as if that which happens simply to be a majority is therefore what the thing is. Tyranny of the majority is precisely one of the conditions that the founders of this nation tried to prevent. This is also why the wall between Church and State was built -- to keep ANY majority from trying to impose its beliefs on the rest of us.

I would actually argue that the Jewish influence on government is nowhere near as prevalent as that of the Christian faiths--and lately, it seems to be mostly Methodists and Evangelicals who are calling the shots. You think the Quakers (pacifists) ever would've gone to war with Iraq, for instance, whatever the stated reason?

Just because you outnumber us does not mean that those of us who count ourselves as Buddhists, Shinto, Muslim, Native American, or follow some other deity or faith don't exist. I myself am Wiccan. There are also many atheists and agnostics. Are we not all Americans, too?

Do we not contribute to the culture? Or are we like a dash of salt to the heavy stew that is your particular brand of god-worship? Interesting to have in the mix, but not essential?

Know what part of the problem is? We can't get elected to public office, and so we depend on that critical amendment to our nation's Constitution to protect us. And what we see is people like you saying that this is a Christian nation and as such we are bound to follow your particular brand of deistic ethics and morality.

I know you mean well in this, friend, but you happen to be the 'light side' of the coin. The other side would outlaw our faith, force us and our children to make public declarations for YOUR religion.

Religious faith is and ought to be a private thing, for each individual to decide for him- or herself. EVERY time religion has gotten its claws into the government, it's spelled oppression and sometimes outright genocide for those who deviate from the official established dogma.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
underseasurveyor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:37 PM
Response to Reply #15
37. Now that was tasty to read
Good eatin' for the soul TW :thumbsup:

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Technowitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:47 PM
Response to Reply #37
52. Thanks RFK2!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cheswick2.0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:20 PM
Response to Reply #15
78. yeah...just not true on the atheist free mason thing
They may or may have not attended or fooled around with the idea of free masonry but they were also raised in christian schools, families and churches which they continued to attend all their lives.
Your ideas are unfortunately a creation of a lot of conjecture on sights like www.deist.com and www.atheist.org . and other people who use that as an argument against the religious rights assertion that there is no separation of Church and state.

Where the oringinal charges of atheism came from was from other more fundamentalist people who wanted to tar many of the other founders because they were not religious enough.

There were many arguments and they fought hard for how much or how little influence religion would play in government. Remember that many of the original states did have state religions. The liberals won, but you can't discount the influence of the others. But that doesn't change the other fact, that even they were life long members of Christian churhes.

I am sure there are many dominionists who would say I was not a christian either..but they would be wrong.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RevCheesehead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #15
83. I must take issue with your claim about Methodists.
Bush may be a United Methodist (in my opinion, in name only), but he does NOT speak on behalf of the United Methodist Church. Neither does any individual, for that matter.

True, there are conservative movements afoot who would probably like to see the conservative agenda of this nation take hold. However, it needs to be pointed out that:

-the United Methodist Bishops spoke out against this war before it even began
-the United Methodist Bishops, like all UM's, are bound by the Book of Discipline and its Social Principles.

We are pro-environment, we recognize science and technology (but do not let science dictate theology). We stand behind the nurturing community (but admittedly have problems agreeing about homosexuality). We stand against domestic violence and sexual harassment. Abortion is a matter left to the parties involved, with medical, pastoral, and other appropriate counsel. We affirm the rights of racial and ethnic persons, and stand against racism, and religious persecution. We believe in the rights of persons of all ages (children - seniors), rights of women, persons with disabilities, equal rights regardless of sexual orientation (again, we have some reconciling to do here). We believe in genetic and medical research, and have even made statements about "media violence and Christian Values" and "the Internet."

It goes on and on. There are statements on the economic community, the political community, and the world.

I leave you with this one thought: (para. 165-B, Book of Discipline)
"National Power and Responsibility - Some nations possess more military and economic power than do others. Upon the powerful rests responsibility to exercise their wealth and influence with restraint. We affirm the right and duty of people of all nations to determine their own destiny. We urge the major political powers to use their nonviolent power to maximize the political, social, and economic self-determination of other nations rather than to further their own special interests. We applaud international efforts to develop a more just international economic order in which the limited resources of the earth will be used to the maximum benefit of all nations and peoples. We urge Christians in every society to encourage the governments under which they live and the economic entities within their societies to aid and work for the development of more just economic orders."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:47 PM
Response to Reply #15
94. TW
"I know you mean well in this, friend, but you happen to be the 'light side' of the coin. The other side would outlaw our faith, force us and our children to make public declarations for YOUR religion."

You're right; I mean well. Watching all the discussion regarding my essay, I've begun to wonder why I started it. I think the reason is this: As a Christian, I feel strongly drawn to the Democratic Party. Yet, many of the most outspoken here on DU are vehemently anti-Christian. The reality is that Christianity is the majority religion in the U.S., at least in a nominal sense. This means that if you want any empowerment at all, you need to find allies withing the Christian faith.

My point of the original essay, in a nutshell is is, I think: "Christianity is NOT a four-letter word."

I just get tired of having my faith villified when I am aligned with the majority of Democratic planks.

And TW, friend, I appreciate your moderate tone (as well as most of the rest of the posters on this thread).
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
VioletLake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #94
100. That's a long way from:
"Like it or not: THIS IS a JUDEO-CHRISTIAN nation"

but ok
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:41 PM
Response to Reply #100
123. Right, but how many people would have read my essay if not
for an inflammatory title?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
VioletLake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:45 PM
Response to Reply #123
125. It's not just the title
but at least you're getting the information you need.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #125
137. Wow
Nice condescention job, Vio
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:27 PM
Response to Reply #137
148. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
VioletLake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:34 PM
Response to Reply #137
166. Doohickie,
I apologize for the content of the deleted response.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:49 PM
Response to Reply #166
204. That's okay, Vio.... PM it to me if you like ;- )
Seriously, if I wasn't ready to take this heat, I shouldn't have stepped into this kitchen, right? I've got no problems with other people posting their views on this thread.

It gets a little frustrating when I catch hate merely for being Christian, though. On the one hand, I am no more welcome in a Religious Right church than an atheist; on the other, even the atheists hate me. *Sigh*
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
VioletLake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:58 PM
Response to Reply #204
207. It must be tough being everyone's victim ;)
Hate is a strong word.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 10:58 PM
Response to Reply #207
210. You're right.... it is a strong word
But there is hate going around when religion comes up. I realize that unless I bring up religion, most DUers are perfectly congenial to me, and I know they don't hate me.

It is the fact that people are in charge of this nation that threaten to take rights away from others. By identifying as a Christian, I catch some of that frustration. I know I'm not some kind of victim or martyr being persecuted for my faith; I harbor no illusions about that. It's just that because I am a Christian, people associate me with the right... which couldn't be further from the truth.

The message I hope to get out... if any at all gets out... is that Christians are not the enemy. Christians who seek to impose their faith on others are the enemy. There's an important distinction there. Maybe my original post made it sound like I was trying to impose my faith on others. If this was the case, I apologize; that was not my intent. I also now recognize that my title was both inaccurate and inflammatory. But stating that the institutions of our nation were influenced by Judeo-Chrisitian tradition- I stand by that. I think the founding fathers were well aware of that tradition and picked the best parts to include in the Constitution.

If I've learned anything on this thread, it is this: That along with the positive influence Judeo-Christian tradition had on our country, there was also a strong reaction to the worst aspects of that tradition. The founding fathers saw that absolute power corrupts absolutely. They sought to prevent this by placing checks and balances in the system to try to make sure a single person did not attain too much power.

I've heard that many governments either assumed their people were somehow perfect or that their governing system would create a perfect society, but that the American repulican form of government was the first to recognize that it was not a perfect form of government, nor did it assume perfection from its people. Therein lies the beauty of our government. A beauty that will become tarnished, however, if any single person is allowed to control too much power.

Many of us are worried that this is happening. I don't know if it is. At this point, even if there are no recounts or proof of fraud and W gets four more years, I feel that somehow the checks and balances the founding fathers put in place will exercise themselves to correct the situation.

Maybe it's just dumb faith on my part, but having faith in higher things is what I'm about.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
VioletLake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 06:39 AM
Response to Reply #210
214. Much better than the original post.
Don't "misunderestimate" the collective intelligence of this group. ;)

I learned some things from your thread too.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
CarbonDate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 09:23 AM
Response to Reply #204
244. I'm a liberal pagan GI
So I can relate, sort of.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Djinn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:44 PM
Response to Reply #137
172. But "like it or not"
wasn't condescending?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
VioletLake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:51 PM
Response to Reply #172
178. Thanks, Djinn.
That's what I should have said in the first place.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:52 PM
Response to Reply #172
205. The condescending part was
"It's not just the title ...but at least you're getting the information you need."

...as if I am not capable of learning unless I have the collective intelligence of this group to guide me. I dunno... if I said something similar, I would expect you to find it condescending.

Wait... I guess I did in the title of the thread.

Nevermind.... carry on.

;)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
MadHound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:17 PM
Response to Reply #94
112. Christianity may not, and should not, be a four letter word, however
Many many Christians think that any religious/spiritual belief other than Christianity IS a four letter word, and in many cases, much worse. That is why you see so much vitriol directed towards Christianity around here.

Another matter for you to consider is that, despite the religious/spiritual leanings of the founding fathers(and some of those leanings are pretty interesting), they did create this country as a SECULAR nation, wherein one is free to worship as one wishes, without fear or reprisal. And the government is, in theory, free of the influence of ANY religion. And yet that is where the rub is coming these days. The evangelical right wing Christians in this country are pushing hard to break down the barrier between church and state, and our leadership seems to be rolling over on this issue. Not a good thing to roll on. Have you ever read the Handmaiden's Tale? A scary, but insightful look at what an American based theocracy could lead to.

And many of this see this future coming closer every day. The whole row over the Pledge of Allegiance, the issue of gay marriage, abortion, prayer in the school, the list is long, and we are getting hammered on it. It is time to start fighting back, and I also think that is part of the mood that you're catching here, that fighting spirit.

As far as your original post goes, I suggest that you go and do a little more historical digging. Our country, our society has as many roots in non judeo-christian underpinnings as it does in them. And christianity itself is a conglomeration of other religious traditions thrown together to form a mogrelized version of itself. Stating that this is a judeo-christian nation is giving short shrift to many other cultural influences that should be recognized.

You, as a Christian, as a liberal, have a stark choice before you. Do you follow the lead of your current church hierarchy, and try to change this country into a theocracy? Or do you join with us heathans,pagans, aetheists, and agnostics in order to preserve our country as it was intended to be, a secular free nation, open to all faiths? The choice is plain before you, and the time to decide is running short. Perhaps your time is better spent pondering your choices than berating us about ours.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:30 PM
Response to Reply #112
117. An answer... and a choice for you:
"You, as a Christian, as a liberal, have a stark choice before you. Do you follow the lead of your current church hierarchy, and try to change this country into a theocracy?"

MY church hierarchy has no desire to turn this country into a theocracy. It is precisely that sort of generalization that inspired me to write my little essay. My church has officially come out against the War in Iraq, calling it immoral and illegal under international law.

"Or do you join with us heathans,pagans, aetheists, and agnostics in order to preserve our country as it was intended to be, a secular free nation, open to all faiths?"

My answer to that is this: I am ALREADY with you and yours. But you have a choice. Because of your frustration with those who identify themselves as Christian, do you seek to alienate all of Christianity, including those factions that are sympathetic to your views?

We need to stick together.

I did not intend for my essay to be divisive, although I can see how it was. My hope was to paint a face of moderate Christianity. This is a face the left should embrace. I was not so much trying to convince anyone that my view is correct, as I was trying to express my view that Christianity and democracy can, in fact, peacefully coexist.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
MadHound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:59 PM
Response to Reply #117
131. I think that you had better look to your own house a little,
Before you criticize mine. While the PCA is a broadbased, Reformation minded church, it still has large pockets of conservative Southern and Evangelical Presbyterians who are trying like hell to steer the church onto a more conservative, theocratic path. The edge that the PCA is as slim as a knife, and if the leadership missteps, the more reactionary minded amongst you will hold sway.

I am an observant, astute student of this country's religions, though I gave up Christianity at the age of twelve(after being baptized as both a Southern Baptist and a Roman Catholic, don't ask). And in the past thirty years, all demoninations, with the exception of Unitarians, and a couple of other small sects, have become much more reactionary, much more conservative. This is a fact, this entire country it seems at times, has become one large Burnt Over District. And much of this was allowed to occur while the more liberal and moderate members of the various Christian Sects slept. If you want to help us, and don't mistake me, your help is always welcome, then you and others of a like mind and faith, need to start taking their denominations back from the forces of suppression and theocracy. All too many times of late we have heard the pious words of tolerance and acceptance from you folks, yet you have let your church slip into the hands of the bigoted and intolerant. They are a minority! And yet for some reason they hold the whip. Why?

As I have said here, and elsewhere, I welcome the help of any Christians willing to preserve the United States as a secular state. But I also think that our Christian brethern need to grow a bit thicker skin. Your react to our venting and frustration as though we are talking to you specifically. Yes, there is a lot of broad brush painting going on, and that needs to be addressed. But realize that for many of us it is a matter of venting such frustration now or going insane at the sheer stupidity and bigotry of the religious right. And you also need to realize that what you are feeling now is merely a taste of what those of us who are not of your faith have recieved from the Christian right. Insults, violence, even death have occurred in the name of God in this country over the past thirty years. Yet those of you who are more moderate simply stood by and watched as your churches drifted ever rightward. It is high time that you cleaned your own house before you start thinking about the cleanliness of mind. I'm sorry if you feel offended, but there are much more important matters afoot, and you can either shake it off and join us in this fight for our country, or you can do as most modern congregations have done for the past thirty years, stand back and let it happen. I realize that you and many others are on our side, and for that we are grateful. Just please understand where those of us who've been through the religious wringer are coming from, and try not to be so easily offended. In return, I will continue to try not to paint with a broad brush. OK?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:07 PM
Response to Reply #131
139. My house is
The Presbyterian Church (USA), not the PCA.

PCUSA is far more liberal, thankyouverymuch.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:59 PM
Response to Reply #131
208. And furthermore, Madhound
I admit that I didn't read that post fully the first time through.

I understand what you say, and I realize the rightness of it. But does it seem right that I, merely because I wear the title of Christian, deserve to get blamed for that which I oppose?

A common response is that people are just giving has they have received. It has to stop somewhere, though, if we're ever going to move forward. I appreciate your offering of the olive branch, I will also try not to be too strident.

Peace to you.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
MrMonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:38 PM
Response to Reply #112
120. I'll throw this bomb and run.
The government of the United States was secular at the time the Constitution was adopted, and still is (though it seems to be hanging on to its secularism by a few worn threads). BUT the nation was Christian (primarily Protestant) at the time the Constitution was adopted. The government is by the people, but the nation is the people.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Commie Pinko Dirtbag Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:03 PM
Response to Reply #120
184. Nations don't have religion. People do.
Nations may IMPOSE a religion upon its people if they're undemocratic theocracies. That's as close as it gets for a nation to "be" of some religion.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
PhuLoi Donating Member (748 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:37 PM
Response to Reply #15
150. Carefull TW, we pagans are to remain quiet and tolerate
whatever is said. Granted that tolerance very nearly caused us to be wiped from the face of the earth, but at least we were polite. It is rude, apparently, to point out that Christianity is a wholesale plagerism of Indo-European paganism. Therefore it is ruder still to point out that in fact our culture is based upon the core beliefs of paganism. If only Socrates or Pythagaras had thought to get a copyright.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
prairierose Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 10:24 PM
Response to Reply #15
209. Thanks Technowitch
a reasonable view. I have always believed that freedom of religion also included freedom "from" religion. An idea we don't see today.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
CarbonDate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #15
242. Don't worry, TW
Based on current demographic trends, this nation will be a majority atheist nation by 2050. I'll be an old man, but barring some freak accident, I should still be around to see it. Then the Christians will come around to our side (I'm a fellow Wiccan).
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
jukes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #15
245. excellent riposte
& absolutely valid.


TX++!!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Comadreja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:24 PM
Response to Original message
18. They were Enlightenment men
The Founders consciously turned away from religion in writing the Constitution, because they were students of the French Enlightenment. If our nation were "Judeo-Christian' (which is a doubtful term to start with)why doesn't it say so in the Constitution. Originally, there was no custom of even swearing by the Bible. They had seen the Puritan theocracy, as their muse John Locke had seen them in the civil war in England. They wanted no part of the "Divine Right of Kings" or the "appointed by God" claptrap.

The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion: Thomas Paine

Persecution is not an original feature in any religion; but it is always the strongly marked feature of all religions established by law. -- Thomas Paine

Question with boldness even the existence of God; because if there be one, He must approve the homage of Reason rather than that of blindfolded Fear. -- Thomas Jefferson

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cocoa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:31 PM
Response to Reply #18
27. that's what I think
the people that focus on the Bible really see the fouding of the United States as an unfortunate interruption to America's destiny. They don't say it, but they despise the Founding Fathers.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:45 PM
Response to Reply #18
49. "Life, liberty, and right to property". Not Jesus. Locke, stolen by TJ
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:45 PM
Response to Reply #18
51. "Life, liberty, and right to property". Not Jesus. Locke, stolen by TJ
Hard to find many biblical concepts in the founding docs, but lots of Locke, Montesque (sp) and enlightment concepts.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mmonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:26 PM
Response to Original message
19. While states had
anti-religious laws (those not protestant, not legally protected), The Constitution was deliberately secular and did not use Christianity or the "bible" as its basis for law and power seperations.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Hey Zeus Donating Member (110 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:28 PM
Response to Original message
22. very insightful...
and correct
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Union Thug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:28 PM
Response to Original message
23. So let's assume you are right (which I don't believe), but
assuming you are right and this country is an xtian nation. When exactly do we decide that it's okay to cast off this ridiculous notion of faith and god as founding principles? Do we as a society still conduct witch hunts and torture people into confessions about pacts with the devil? No. People grew up. Is slavery still legal? No. We as a nation decided slavery violates human rights. Our forbears saw the benefit of abandoning certain practices when it was clear that they were not useful and were collectively harmful to our nation and its people.

So why is it that people want to hold on to this magical world view when it is so blatant'y in contradiction to reality? Global warming? Screw it, the rapture is coming! Getting fucked over on the job? Don't worry, there's pie in the sky when you die. All justice will be served in some magical nether realm. Teach a science curriculum that includes sound ideas around the origins of life? No, we have a talking snake theory that fits our magical world view. Screw science.

Time to grow up, America.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:50 PM
Response to Reply #23
97. Union Thug
I agree that we are to grow up.

Just as we did with the abolition of slavery.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DrWeird Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:32 PM
Response to Original message
28. Don't go blaming jews and christians for this mess.
That's like blaming Islam for terrorism.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:35 PM
Response to Original message
33. A thought from James Madison.
"What influence, in fact, have ecclesiastical establishments had on society? In some instances they have been seen to erect a spiritual tyranny on the ruins of the civil authority; on many instances they have been seen upholding the thrones of political tyranny; in no instance have they been the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wish to subvert the public liberty may have found an established clergy convenient auxiliaries. A just government, instituted to secure and perpetuate it, needs them not."
--- James Madison, "A Memorial and Remonstrance", 1785
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:38 PM
Response to Reply #33
40. A thought from Thomas Jefferson
"In every country and in every age the priest has been hostile to
liberty; he is always in allegiance to the despot, abetting his
abuses in return for protection of his own."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #40
42. A thought from George Washington
"The blessed Religion revealed in the word of God will remain an
eternal and awful monument to prove that the best Institutions may be
abused by human depravity; and that they may even, in some instances,
be made subservient to the vilest of purposes."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:35 PM
Response to Original message
34. Your post distorted so many things...
where to start...someone has already mentioned The Treaty of Tripoli and the statement to the Danbury Baptist church, in both of which the founders stated the United States was not a Christian nation.

the founders were part of The Enlightenment. without that, there would not have been the push for democracies in Europe and America because the Enlightenment, in the simplest terms, undid the belief in the divine right of kings (and the alignment of govt with religion that this entailed.)

John Locke, of course, was also important in developing the idea of individual rights.

Jefferson cut out the supernatural parts of the gospels because he thought that Jesus was an excellent social philosopher. The Old Testament wasn't part of the consideration...so you shouldn't elide his actions to mean a wholesale acceptance of everything in the Bible...that's a distortion of what he did and what he said about his actions.

Jews of the Diaspora were put into positions of bankers because of laws AGAINST usury by other faiths (Islam and Christianity), so your characterization, again, doesn't seem to quite fit the historical development of their involvement in finance because "they were good at this..." They were excluded from many professions and they needed to survive.

And, along with your other distortions, your heading, that this is a Judeo-Christian nation is a lie.

Yes, the majority of people in this nation have been from the Judeo-Christian tradition. But we are not a theocracy. We are not ruled by the ten commandments. We do not, as a nation, accept the infallibility of the Bible. We do not require a religious test (at least according to the Constitution...but in fact, this has become a de facto part of the extreme right wing..but it's still unconstitutional).

If you want to practice a religion, fine. Do it. But will you please stop trying to proselytze to people who are well aware of the Bible and have formed their own opinions?

This sort of "in your face" behavior by evangelicals and fundamentalists infringes upon my right to freedom of and from religion, and therefore, you are not being a "good American" to insist that everyone must think as you do or follow your religious opinion.


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:46 PM
Response to Reply #34
126. "Your post distorted so many things..."
Well, this is a discussion board. When do facts actually come into it?

Seriously... I don't think I proselytized in my original post.

As for my "distortions", I could say the same of your assertions. For instance, the fact that Jews could be trusted with money because of their beliefs is a big part of the reason they became involved in banking. You're right that other groups were prohibited. But the Romans could have banked for themselves, couldn't they? There was a reason they preferred Jewish bankers: They could be trusted.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Malva Zebrina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:38 PM
Response to Original message
38. What exactly is Judeo-Christian?
Christians do not worship the same god as the Jews. Why do they adopt the Judeo thing?

I have often wondered about that. Some have told me it is because they consider themselves a branch off the vine (the old testament god)--in other words, they are worshipping the god of Abraham right along with the Jews.

However, even though the Jews do worship the god of Abraham, they do not worship the notion of the trinity or the notion that Jesus was the messiah and a god or the Holy Ghost as a god. So there is actually no similarity at all.

So, applying the name of the Jews and rather arrogantly, imo, applying it to Christianity seems to me to be rather disingenous.

Without the application, however, all of those OT prophecies that are so prevalent in Christian thought and dogma, would go away, so I suppose out of expediency and in an attempt to give legitimacy to the Christian belief, it is necessary to attach the Judaeo even though no serious Jew could say it is the same god or the same religion.


Just one of the many thought I have now and then.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Inland Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #38
47. what "Chrisitan" becomes when there is a Jew in the room.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RainDog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:52 PM
Response to Reply #47
55. LOL!!! n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RevCheesehead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:40 PM
Response to Reply #38
93. We do too most certainly worship the same God!
The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the God of Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus was (is) a Jew, and his scripture was the Old Testament. The letters of Paul and others were addressed to the early Christian communities in the first generations of Christianity. And it was much later that the Gospel accounts were written.

The use of the term "Judeo-Christian" is meant to imply that we have more in common that people think. And although its term can be seen as perjorative to Jewish people, I believe its use is important: to remind CHRISTIANS of their JEWISH HERITAGE.

A Christian CANNOT be an anti-semite, because Jesus was/is Jewish.. and for those who claim it's those who came AFTER Jesus, they need to read Paul's letter to the Romans. He clearly states that what God chooses to do with the Jews who do not recognize Jesus is not a matter for us to be concerned about. The Jews are already God's chosen people, and they will stand before God as being already chosen by God to be a light unto the nations.

Now, if you want to get Trinitarian - that's a discussion for another thread. But MY God, the God of Jesus, is YHWH (with apologies for those who may think I am blaspheming the name of the LORD).
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Malva Zebrina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:44 PM
Response to Reply #93
152. Well then I am confused
Are Christians Jews because Jesus was a Jew?

There seems to be a disconnect somewhere. Sorry I asked but the question was a logical inquiry.

And no--the question of trinity is quite relevant as to which god the Christians worship and which god the Jews worship and there is a distinct difference. You will notice that Jews do not refer to their religion as the Judaeo Christian religion and the reason is obvious.

Now I do not want to start a conflict or the post will be deleted for inflaming somebody or being provocative or bigoted.

Let's go to the religion and theology forum to continue the discussion.

I would invite your to go to the atheist forum, but apparently it was refused space here. I have had many a conversation with clergy, many nice conversations with clergy, while discussing these topics.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:09 PM
Response to Reply #152
156. It is my understanding
that the God of the Jews is the God of the Trinity without the Holy Spirit and Jesus componant.

The same as the God of the Muslims - the God of Abraham.


I don't know what kind of clergy are saying otherwise. Some people in some denominations say that Catholics are not Christians and I find that equally ridiculous.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Philostopher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:39 PM
Response to Reply #156
188. As far as 'Catholics are not Christian' ...
"I don't know what kind of clergy are saying otherwise. Some people in some denominations say that Catholics are not Christians and I find that equally ridiculous."

I can only address my personal experience insofar as reasons some Christian denominations may say that Catholics aren't Christian:

Some evangelical sects say that Catholics are pagans because they (reputedly) 'deify' the virgin. As far as some evangelicals are concerned, Mary was only a tool of God, she wasn't otherwise blessed -- she was just a player in the game. Catholics actually pray to her, by saying the Catechism, and some evangelicals view that as trying to shoehorn her into the trinity with Jesus, God and the Holy Spirit.

They also don't like the idea of the 'lost books' of the bible; they claim they were only written to serve the purpose of Catholicism, and weren't 'real' books intended to be part of the 'real' bible.

Me, I'm agnostic (maybe Deist) and have no dog in this fight, but I thought I'd clear that question up for you. It doesn't cover every denomination that claims this, or every reason any protestant may say it, but I think it covers more than just my one conservative evangelical denominational experience, and probably some fundamentalist evangelical denominations.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:41 PM
Response to Reply #152
203. many Christians do not
believe in what you call "the trinity." And most are not Jews, as the Jewish people are an ethnic group, the majority of whom belong to one of the most beautiful of all religions.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 08:28 AM
Response to Reply #152
218. I never claimed there was a "Judeo-Christian" religion
The phrase "Judeo-Christian" refers to the cultural heritage of both Christianity and Judaism, from which Christianity branched off. By saying a "Judeo-Christian nation", people assumed a religious aspect. The reference was intended more in a sociological sense.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
immoderate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #93
236. "A Christian CANNOT be an anti-semite"
Torquemada and Hitler might disagree. Not to mention Walt Disney.

--IMM
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:56 PM
Response to Reply #38
102. Actually, Christians DO, in fact, worship the God of Abraham
So do Muslims, for that matter. Our understanding of God is admittedly different, but we all see God as the Creator. Is it arrogant to worship the same God, but recognize that we have different understandings of that God?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
wickywom Donating Member (383 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:39 PM
Response to Original message
41. Church going in this country has always been a social
necessity for "civilized" members of the community.
Many of our VERY deist free thinkers belonged to churches.
You just did.
my grandfather belonged and gave money to his church for70 years and went
only a handful of times.
That is what I think has been changing in our country..
People have moved beyond "having" to belong to a congregations... and
that hurts the coffers.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Pithlet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:53 PM
Response to Original message
57. "Christian Nation"
If this country is governed by a secular government, which it should be, and that is what the "Founding Fathers" intended, then whatever religious background they came from is irrelevant. I think that arguments that this is a Christian nation were exactly what they were trying to avoid. For the most part, they left their own personal beliefs out of it.

Your argument seems to be that all the wonderful and good things we enjoy in our free society came from Christian beliefs because a majority of the Founding Fathers belonged to that faith, which also seems to rest on the false assumption those principles could only come from a Judeo-Christian faith. Don't forget that it wasn't just the founding fathers that got the ball rolling. Millions of people through history have a hand in that, from many different backgrounds and beliefs, and it is a process that continues through the present. The Founding Fathers could not have done it alone.

People like to point out the The Founding Fathers' belief in God a lot. The founding fathers were all white men, some of whom owned slaves. How much of THAT had anything to do with the Rules of Society today? Were they influenced at all by those aspects of their lives? Those gets conveniently ignored, or argued away as irrelevant while their faith in God is given tons of credit. I wonder why that is?

Sorry, but I've been told a million times that people like me are irrelevant because this is a Christian Nation. And people are fighting like mad to chip away at the barriers between Church and State and using the exact same argument you are using now, your assertion that you like secular government aside.

I don't like to be told to thank my lucky stars that it was Christians who founded this nation, and that anyone else wouldn't have been inclined to found the free and wonderful country that is the USA because Christianity has the market cornered on those principles. I don't like to be told that because Christians are in the majority, that we are a Christian nation whether I like it or not. If we are all equal, and all free, regardless of who and what we believe in, then we are NOT a Judeo-Christian nation.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Mandate My Ass Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:56 PM
Response to Original message
58. "socieity's(sic) rules concerning civil rights
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 02:01 PM by Mandate My Ass
...came from the the Judeo-Christian tradition."

As I recall, civil rights had to be wrested, at the cost of terrible loss of life, from the government.

Ditto, workers' rights, abolition, women's rights....
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
wickywom Donating Member (383 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #58
91. the kkk
is Christian org.



Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
HEIL PRESIDENT GOD Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 01:59 PM
Response to Original message
60. Your history is way off
Jews became moneylenders because the early church said Christians would go to hell if they earned interest, but the nobles still needed to borrow to build castles and fight wars. Had nothing to do with the Roman empire. Any Roman could lend money.

Rome was a Republic before it was an Empire, just like us, and it was the primary model for our "founding fathers."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Ready4Change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:00 PM
Response to Original message
62. There is a BIG difference...
There is a big difference between "composed of and founded by many Judeo-Christains" and "is a Judeo-Christian nation."

If there is no such difference, I'll be entertained by your explaination for why this nations first amendment firmly severs religion from it's government.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:02 PM
Response to Reply #62
105. My bad
I totally agree with you.

Poor choice of words on my part, it light of the discussion that followed. When I said "Judeo-Christian Nation", the thrust of that was that the government was an attempt to espouse solid values, as understood by the founding fathers (many of whom came from the Judeo-Christian tradition).
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
VioletLake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:09 PM
Response to Original message
70. Is Ford Motor Company
a Judeo-Christian company?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
BurtWorm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:10 PM
Response to Original message
71. You might as well call this a pagan nation, as paganism preceded
both Judaism and Christianity, both of which borrowed from it. To call it a Judeo-Christian nation is to ignore the fact that the Constitution specifically denies establishment of any state religion. If you want to say Judaism and Christianity influenced the creation of the American nation, no one will argue against that. But this is not a Judeo-Christian nation anymore than it's a pagan nation, Deist nation, or atheist nation.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #71
107. Agreed, Burt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DuaneBidoux Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:12 PM
Response to Original message
73. I'm sure religion of the founding fathers influenced the creation of
our Constitution. But I challenge you anywhere in the Constitution to find a mention of Jesus, or God. It isn't there.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #73
108. I don't think I said that.
On the contrary, I said, "they embraced those aspects of the Judeo-Christian tradition which were self-evident no matter what your spiritual beliefs and put up a wall against the spiritual aspects that might spoil that which is self-evident."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DuaneBidoux Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:47 PM
Response to Reply #108
174. Like it or not America is a WHITE nation
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
jukes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #174
247. ouch! good 1!
i understand the orig poster's intent in stimulating a discussion, but disagree w/ many assumptions.

much of "christianity" is borrowed from indo-european tribal societies eventually subsumed by xianity, @ least from the historical perspective of those that, looking from the outside/in, see little bearing on xian dogma from the (supposed) teachings of the biblical "jesus".

there is a very strong school of thought that suspects no such person actually existed, and that the figurehead of xian theology was a borrowing from other extant fertility cults.

we may very well owe as much to "mithra" as "jesus", as far as cultural heritage goes.

a strong atheist, i do agree w/ subsequent postings by orig poster that Christians shd NOT be disenfranchised by our party based on their faith; some Christian individuals most def belong w/us.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
wickywom Donating Member (383 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:17 PM
Response to Original message
76. It doesn't freaking matter...
Things happened the way they did because there were just more Christians than anyone else.

Our forefathers were well aware of what religion did to Europe ...
As they were aware of what monarchies did.

So in an effort to avoid that fate they choose to keep religion seperated...
outside of the pomp and circumstance to keep the masses of Christians comfortable.

Period.

If different religions had been more prevelant... they may have been more prevelant.

Our forefathers --- in the Treaty of Tripoli sought peace with the Muslims in claiming this is not a Christian nation....

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Walt Starr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:21 PM
Response to Original message
80. Makes as much sense as claiming this is a WHITE NATION
Or make that a WHITE SLAVEHOLDING NATION.

Or anything similar.

This is a SECULAR nation as evidenced byt this nation's defining document, the constitution.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:06 PM
Response to Reply #80
109. Et tu, Walt?
;)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:33 PM
Response to Original message
88. You want me to leave?
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 02:34 PM by robbedvoter
Careful what you wish!

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
datasuspect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:48 PM
Response to Original message
95. jesus
did i just stumble on freerepublic.com
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Cleita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 02:52 PM
Response to Original message
98. The religion of this nation was animism and shamanism
before the white Christians and Jews arrived.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:12 PM
Response to Original message
110. Wow, what a thread!
I'm guessing this is my official "15 minutes of fame".
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Bridget Burke Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:12 PM
Response to Original message
111. Interesting essay. Yes, all of the founders WERE Christian.
(More or less.) One was Catholic--Charles Carroll of Carrollton. None were Jewish.

Also, all were white male property owners. Many of them owned slaves.

Things have changed. Deal with it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kcwayne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:21 PM
Response to Reply #111
114. No they were not all Christian
Many were Deists. That is specifically not Christian.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Bridget Burke Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:46 PM
Response to Reply #114
128. I said "more or less"
They all attended church services, even though they may have done so for social reasons & been discreet about their actual spiritual beliefs.

However, the main point of my message was that what they were does not encompass the whole of what this country has become.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
kcwayne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:40 PM
Response to Reply #128
151. A Deist is not more or less a Christian
Thomas Jefferson:

"I have examined all the known superstitions of the world, and I do not find in our particular superstition of Christianity one redeeming feature. They are all alike founded on fables and mythology. Millions of innocent men, women and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined and imprisoned. What has been the effect of this coercion? To make one half the world fools and the other half hypocrites; to support roguery and error all over the earth."

This is not exactly discreet. What reference do you have that men such as Jefferson attended church?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Bridget Burke Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:49 PM
Response to Reply #151
176. He was officially Episcopalian but the Unitarians claim him, too.
Like many others of his time (he died just one year after the founding of institutional Unitarianism in America), Jefferson was a Unitarian in theology, though not in church membership. He never joined a Unitarian congregation: there were none near his home in Virginia during his lifetime. He regularly attended Joseph Priestley's Pennsylvania church when he was nearby, and said that Priestley's theology was his own, and there is no doubt Priestley should be identified as Unitarian. Jefferson remained a member of the Episcopal congregation near his home, but removed himself from those available to become godparents, because he was not sufficiently in agreement with the trinitarian theology.

www.famousuus.com/bios/thomas_jefferson.htm

His personal beliefs were more along the Deist/Unitarian/Whatever line but he did go through the motions at church. It was part of his duty as a prominent member of the community.

I'm not agreeing with the fellow who started this thread, by the way. Yes, most of the Founding Fathers had darkened the doorway of a house of worship; that was not the main source of the ideas that helped form this country. And we've grown since then.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
dpibel Donating Member (898 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:23 PM
Response to Original message
115. Would you be so kind
As to give me examples of the judeo-christian principles embodied in the Constitution?

A long and storied history of repression of competing sects seems inconsistent with freedom of religion.

Heresy trials don't quite fit with freedom of speech.

Peacable assembly? Right to petition? Not familiar judeo-christian ideals.

Right to bear arms? Can't find it.

Quartering of troops? Never heard about it in Sunday school.

Search and seizure only under warrant? Not much discussed from the pulpit.

Double jeopardy? Self-incrimination? Due process? Don't recall Jesus or Paul talking much about that.

You get the idea, I trust.

Or maybe you're talking about the rest of the Constitution. If so, I'm wondering what's so judeo-christian about a federal system, separation of powers, control of commerce, and all the rest.

You say that the founders were dealing in self-evident truths. If they're self-evident, why ascribe them to the judeo-christian tradition, or to any other.

Since I can't find much of any consonance between the teachings of the judeo-christian tradition and the Constitution, I have to wonder where your claim comes from. Seems to me the founding principles are much easier to find in then-contemporary secular philosophy than in the judeo-christian tradition.

I'm not aware that the Bible, or any judeo-christian tradition, addresses the right to trial by jury.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #115
135. Very good questions - !!!
:bounce:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
datasuspect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:34 PM
Response to Original message
118. what is scary
is that you are presenting a right wing fundamentalist meme.

i study these people and this is word for word lifted from their playbook.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:59 PM
Response to Reply #118
132. Nah.... it's word for word from my head
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 04:00 PM by Doohickie
The point is this: SOME Christians are pretty scary and are seeking a theocracy. Others, not so much. Many of us are pretty much "live and let live".

Non-Christians should not automatically associate Christianity with Evil. The resulting defensiveness alienates moderate Christians from the liberal discussion. Although I never said so in my essay, people thought that merely linking a Judeo-Christian heritage with the founding of our nation meant that I want all non-Christians out. I don't. They think it means I advocate a theocracy. I don't. I just want a place at the table, the same as you. A lot of non-Christians say they just want to be respected and valued as part of our society. As a Christian, I am saying I just want to be respected and valued as part of the Democratic Party.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Commie Pinko Dirtbag Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:09 PM
Response to Reply #132
140. Non-Christians will stop associating Christianity with Evil
When Christians stop automatically associating lack of Christianity with Evil.

Get back to us when that happens.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:46 PM
Response to Reply #140
173. Have I accused any of you of being evil?
I think you need to stop stereotyping Christians. That's a pretty broad brush ya got there.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Commie Pinko Dirtbag Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:55 PM
Response to Reply #173
180. And have I accused YOU? (nt)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:00 PM
Response to Reply #180
183. Well, I *am* a Christian, you know.....
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
datasuspect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:10 PM
Response to Reply #132
141. well
you have to earn respect.

it isn't a given. it doesn't help to align yourself with principles that square with some of the fundamental tenets of the right. that is what i read in your essay.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
revree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:46 PM
Response to Original message
127. Uh, no it isn't bub.
Read the Constitution.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 03:49 PM
Response to Original message
129. Nope, it is not!
This nation is a MULTITUDE of things, but it is not solely a Judeo-Christian nation. Many have already pointed out inaccuracies, so I won't repeat them. However, to make a statement like that, even with a follow-up, negates the others in this nation who do not follow those particular faiths. We are supposed to be a SECULAR nation with many different religious backgrounds. We may be on our way to a theocracy, but it isn't here yet! And, I feel there will be many who will fight tooth and nail to PREVENT that!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:02 PM
Response to Reply #129
133. READ the original post
There was absolutely no advocacy for a theocracy.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:07 PM
Response to Reply #133
138. Read my post
I didn't say YOU were advocating a theocracy! What I said was that the way things are going, we are heading toward a theocracy! Do you not agree there are Christians who WANT this to be a Christian nation and are trying to make it such?! There are those who are trying to dissolve the wall between government and religion!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:10 PM
Response to Reply #138
142. Okay...
Fair enough. I will be an ally in your fight against theocracy.

:toast:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:11 PM
Response to Reply #142
143. I am glad to hear it!
We need more understanding and to embrace our country's diversity!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
mitchum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:03 PM
Response to Original message
134. Well, I guess that explains the theft, slavery, and genocide
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 04:03 PM by mitchum
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Darranar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:13 PM
Response to Original message
144. Those ideas weren't new and aren't unique to Judaism or Christianity. n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:20 PM
Response to Original message
145. One could look at the laws
and such created over the years and see a Judeo-Christian influence.

I'll grant you that.



Some people see this as a good thing - esp. those benefitting from it.

Some people see it as not so good of a thing.


I see it as way for some people to justify their hold on power and influence.


Liberals managed for a few years to get some things changed - in civil rights, womens's rights, etc. I think those rights are not really addressed in the "Judeo-Christian" tradition. And a lot "Christians" are trying to get us to go back to a time when the majority believed in a patriarchal society - where the man is the master of the man/woman/children family. They are almost there.

You are helping them out. Thus the flames...


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:35 PM
Response to Reply #145
167. So much of the Civil Rights movement is supported by
"Love your neighbor as yourself"

and

"Whatsoever you did for the least of these, you did for me"

Some may argue that Civil Rights is a correction of improperly implemented "Christian" values. I guess I would agree.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bloom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:48 PM
Response to Reply #167
175. The thing of it is
you could take most books and pick out lines that make sense and say that the world reflects those things - or should reflect those things.

You could also take the Bible and find many things that are not so good.


And while I think those two lines should sum up the essense of the Bible - I don't think the people in the government are trying to implement that. If they were - we would probably have a more communal society - which is what I believe the very early Christians had.

We are no where close as a nation in doing the best by each other.

And like Frank Rich wrote recently - the Republicans are abolute hypocrites when it comes to professing to being all about moral issues - when they are really all about power, etc.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
patcox2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:23 PM
Response to Original message
147. So much muddy thinking, Impossible to debate in your terms.
First of all, what do you mean by "nation?" The government itself, the system of government, or the people, or the society?

Second, what does it mean for a "nation" to be "judeo-christian?" Obviously, you don't require that it be a theocracy, but what do you mean?

Here are two specific propositions with some more clearly defined terms and relationships.

The majority of the people who had a formative influence on the creation of our country and its form of government beleived in some variation of the judeo-christian group of religions."

"Our society is pervasively influenced by the broad parameters of the judeo-christian ethical system."

"Our laws embody christian theology."

"Our constitution is based on judeo christian principles."

I feel that only the first two of these propositions have any validity. But as you can see, you should be more careful with your terminology, and you should think more clearly about just what exactly you mean when you make a vague statement like "our nation is judeo christian." That statement is so vague as to be like a rorshach test, an inkblot that everyone interprets in their own way. Thats why you have some people arguing about the religious beleifs of the founders, which I think are pretty irrelevant ot what you really meant to say, and others arguing against their own individual interpretation of your thesis.

So, anyway, what do you mean? That we as a society live in a culture so pervasively influenced by the general moral precepts of the judeo christian tradition that we cannot even so how great the influence is? I would agree with you completely. That the nation-state known as the USA is a judeo-christian theocracy? Absolutely not. That we as citizens share a common sense of ouor identity as a nation which explicitly ties our national institutions with judeo-christian religious belief? Absolutely not true. That the majority of the people in our country believe in some variant of a judeo-christian faith and this majority influences our national laws and policies? Probably true but arguable as to extent.

These are all very different statements, though, and you should refine your thoughts to be more specific.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:44 PM
Response to Reply #147
171. I like this one:
"Our society is pervasively influenced by the broad parameters of the judeo-christian ethical system."

Amen. That's it.

And you're right about the inkblot test, I think. I knew what I meant and was simply amazed that others didn't comprehend it in exactly the way I intended!

:crazy:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Djinn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 07:52 PM
Response to Reply #171
194. that's meaningless though
"Our society is pervasively influenced by the broad parameters of the judeo-christian ethical system."

Amen. That's it."


those "braod parameters" were not invented by Judaism or Christianity - they eveolved a long time before and were the tenets of many prior religions and philosophies. Also some of the things you credit Judeo/Christianity for weren't really a part of Christianity or Judaism
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Quill Pen Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:31 PM
Response to Original message
149. Yikes.
>>>To this day, Jewish people are over-represented in financial industries. They accomplished this not through some conspiracy but because they actually earned the trust of others.<<<

Actually, they accomplished this by force. Throughout much of history, Jews were not permitted to own land. Hence the "over-representation" of Jews in finance, mercantile and academic professions.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the "founding fathers" were largely unconcerned with religion in the design of early American policy; they were wealthy businessmen who wished to remain that way. Their aim was to create a free-market nation, liberated from the "tyranny" of the extremely rich and powerful influence that churches in Europe held. Simply put, the money that customarily siphoned into churches in Europe, these guys wanted to skim for themselves and their compatriots. Note that the Constitution as originally crafted preserves and even makes provisions for slavery -- which a nation built strictly on Judeo-Christian tenets would not allow. As far as I know, John Adams, a minister by training, was the only professed Christian of the lot. (From David McCullough's biography, "John Adams.")

From http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/farrell_till/myt... :
>>>In a letter to Horatio Spafford in 1814, Jefferson said, "In every country and every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own. It is easier to acquire wealth and power by this combination than by deserving them, and to effect this, they have perverted the purest religion ever preached to man into mystery and jargon, unintelligible to all mankind, and therefore the safer for their purposes" (George Seldes, The Great Quotations, Secaucus, New Jersey Citadel Press, 1983, p. 371). In a letter to Mrs. Harrison Smith, he wrote, "It is in our lives, and not from our words, that our religion must be read. By the same test the world must judge me. But this does not satisfy the priesthood. They must have a positive, a declared assent to all their interested absurdities. My opinion is that there would never have been an infidel, if there had never been a priest" (August 6, 1816).<<<

A nation founded by men raised in the Judeo-Christian tradition (though not professing Judeo-Christian faith, with very limited exceptions) is not the same thing as a Judeo-Christian nation. Consider that the population of black slaves in America in 1790 (the first census), was 698,000, or roughly 20% of the full U.S. population at the time. They didn't come from a Judeo-Christian background, at all -- what about their influence? What about the influence of millions of other immigrants over the next 200 years? And, for crying out loud, what about Native Americans? The Native American population of what we call America today outnumbered whites by roughly two to one in the 1770s.

Currently, the Wiccan religion is the fastest growing in the U.S.; its numbers double about every 30 months. 25% of Americans do not identify themselves as Christians. We still collect and spend their tax money.

Judeo-Christian nation, my ass!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
arwalden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 04:56 PM
Response to Original message
153. Fuck That Shit!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Amaya Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:56 PM
Response to Reply #153
182. Best response on this thread
Sigh. Now for that drink :beer:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Astarho Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:01 PM
Response to Original message
155. You should read more history
But... if you read ancient history, Rome ruled by force of power. Most ancient regimes did. Within the Roman Empire, there was one group of people who was found to be trustworthy enough to handle other people's money with integrity. They had a set of rules they followed that they took very seriously. This group was the diaspora of the Jewish people. To this day, Jewish people are over-represented in financial industries. They accomplished this not through some conspiracy but because they actually earned the trust of others.

The Romans caused the Jewish Diaspora. The Romans didn't trust the Jews at all, because the Jews, like their more troublesome offshoot, the Christians refused to recognize the divinity of the emperor. This earned them both a whole world of persecution. Also the Jewish rebellions did not help either.

Also the Romans had no banking like we would know it today (hence the discovery of so many Roman coin hordes, which you can find on eBay). The Jewish entry into the financial industries did not begin until the Middle Ages when laws forbade Christians from charging interest on loans and forbade Jews from owning land.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:10 PM
Response to Original message
157. Poppy Bush would be proud of ya - atheists aren't citizens
However, the founders disagree. In the Maltese agreement 9got to find the year/text) it was stipulated that "this is not a Christian nation"
But then again, since "we are an empire now, we create our own reality", facts are irrelevant anyway.
I just thought this was still a reality based community.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:51 PM
Response to Reply #157
177. Explain to me
why Poppy would be proud.

Have I, even once, in this thread or anywhere else on DU, intimated that non-Christians are somehow not considered as citizens? No.

I will admit my original topic is a bit inflammatory, but READ the essay attached to it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Greyskye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:51 PM
Response to Reply #177
191. Probably referring to this:
At a news conference in Chicago on August 27, 1987; Vice President Bush was asked several questions. In response to one question, Bush said, "I don't know that atheists should be regarded as citizens, nor should they be regarded as patriotic. This is one nation under God."

:mad: :puke: :argh: :grr:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:27 PM
Response to Reply #191
198. I'm familiar with the reference
And I carefully stated that the framers kept the "self-evident" and left the spiritual specifics out. I have no idea how that is supposed to be construed as challenging the citizenship of atheists.

I don't think I've said anything on this thread that warrants the term "xenophobe", but I've seen plenty of people that could easily be called "christophobes".

You preach tolerance toward your views while simultaneously being intolerant of those whose views differ.

Greyskye: The above isn't specifically toward you; it's to those in general who posted to this thread and took exception to my viewpoint.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
The Stranger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:23 PM
Response to Original message
161. If by "Judeo", you mean Hebrew, you're wrong.
The Hebrews did not have Democracy, only a monarchy and a theocracy.

Democracy came from the Greeks.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
The Stranger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:26 PM
Response to Original message
163. This part is historically inaccurate:
The followers of Judaism and of Christ had stumbled across a set of rules for social discourse that stressed integrity and and the value of every member of society. What started out as a radical concept became a large part of Western civilization.

The Founding Fathers articulated thoughts that came from Enlightenment thinkers, not the Bible or any Bible writer or theologian. The Enlightenment thinkers largely drew upon the Greeks.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
carnie_sf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:28 PM
Response to Original message
164. Signed by President J. Adams 1796

Treaty of peace and friendship between the United States and the Bey and Subjects of Tripoli of Barbary

---------------------------------------------------------------------

Authored by American diplomat Joel Barlow in 1796, the following treaty was sent to the floor of the Senate, June 7, 1797, where it was read aloud in its entirety and unanimously approved. John Adams, haven seen the treaty, signed it and proudly proclaimed it to the Nation.

Art. 11. As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquillity, of Mussulmen; and, as the said States never entered into any war, or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties, that no pretext arising from religious opinions, shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:53 PM
Response to Reply #164
179. Even in my title of the first post,
I never said that this nation was founded on the "Christian religion". Nothing I say here is at odds with your citation.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
tavalon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 05:41 PM
Response to Original message
170. This may well be true
but I'm not sure if giving this meme anymore air time is a good thing.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
David Zephyr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:08 PM
Response to Original message
187. Not One of the "Founding Documents" Refer to a "Judeo-Christian Nation"
Edited on Tue Nov-16-04 06:10 PM by David Zephyr
Not one.

Not the Declaration of Independence.

Not the Constitution.

Not one letter of Thomas Jefferson.

Not one letter of John Adams.

Not one letter of Ben Franklin.

Not one letter of James Madison.

Sorry, Doohickie. I'm sure you meant well, but the United States is not and has never been a "Judeo-Christian nation" which is nothing more than a very transparent construct by right-wing xenophobes and cultural bigots to exclude and diminish the worth of African-Americans, Asian Americans, Atheist-Americans, Homosexual Americans and as Cheswick points out Native Americans.

Sorry to see you fanning such an ugly fire here at the DemocraticUnderground.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:19 PM
Response to Reply #187
195. I think you're
jumping to conclusions. I said none of that; you got there on your own.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
David Zephyr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #195
230. I Jumped to the Conclusion That Your Inflammatory Title Intended.
"Like it or not: THIS IS a JUDEO-CHRISTIAN nation".

Duhhhhhhhhh...I don't know what on earth else you could have meant and I specifically put "founding documents" in quotes since they were also your words.

I'm glad that you did admit that your thread was inflammatory. I only ask: why did you feel it necessary?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:32 PM
Response to Reply #230
237. David.... to be honest,
I kind of pictured this: People seeing the title, getting a little hot under the collar, reading my essay (the whole thing, hopefully) and coming to the conclusion that Christians weren't so bad after all.

Really, that's the honest truth.

The point, the whole point of the essay was: The Constitution (and other founding documents) were influenced by Judeo-Christian tradition, but that it also includes separation of church and state.... and that just because someone is a Christian does mean he advocates theocracy.



I thought this was a forum where the free exchange of ideas (yes, I expected competing ideas to be posted) was encouraged. And most people who posted here were pretty moderate in their responses, even when they disagreed. I don't mind talking to people like that and learning things. But even with the "inflammatory title", I figured DUers would read and try to understand the whole essay, and argue the points in it without resorting to ad hominem tactics.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
David Zephyr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 02:33 PM
Response to Reply #237
248. Christians Aren't Bad... Real Christians Can't Be.
I believe it was Gandhi who said Christianity is a great religion, but he'd just never seen anyone practice it.

Your thread did bring out many important counter points by some of DU's finest which undermine the false myth that our democracy and form of government was based on "judeo-christian" (a word, that it has been said offends both sides of that artificial hyphen) traditions.

The Greeks, gave us far more with regards to our democratic ideals and law making bodies such as the Senate, as others have correctly pointed out in your thread.

The concepts of good and evil which Nietzsche pointed out to us were Persian, not Jewish in origin.

Asian societies and African societies and "Indian"/Native American societies all had their own long, established great codes for civil ethics without any help from the Jewish or Christian traditions or influence.

This blessed land we inhabit and now call America once belonged to beautiful tribes and highly developed, structured and peaceful societies with very ethical populations long before the Europeans and their traditions ever "discovered" it...and spoiled it.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
jbm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 06:41 PM
Response to Original message
190. christianity correlates because..
Jesus taught the same thing that all the other big name spiritual leaders or philosophers taught, and what that was, was liberalism. I don't care if it was Gandhi, or Plato, Christ or Mark Twain, Thomas Jefferson or Gautama Buddha, it's all the same stuff. People want to say we're a christian nation, but what we are when we're at our best, is a liberal nation.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:20 PM
Response to Reply #190
196. jbm: Good post. n/m
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
KnowerOfLogic Donating Member (841 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 07:33 PM
Response to Original message
192. Every moral value in the Bible came from somewhere else.
Open a history book. A whole lot of people were on to things like "don't kill, don't steal, don't lie...etc," long before Moses or Jeezus ever came on the scene. There is good and bad in the Bible; it requires rational, secular, human judgement to distinguish between the two. The last thing we need to do is give legitimacy to any single book being the word of god or an absolute moral guide for america.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:21 PM
Response to Original message
197. Shouldn't you be in uniform in Iraq, converting heathens?
I suppose the crusade must mean a lot to you - so what are you doing here, preaching to us, rather than saving muslims at the point of a gun? get!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #197
199. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 07:45 AM
Response to Reply #199
216. You are a MODERATE????? And I am chasing YOU?
Edited on Wed Nov-17-04 07:46 AM by robbedvoter
Did I start "Like it of not, my way or the highway" f*ing threads?
You do advocate theocracy, you are the cause that these fascists even get away with the enormity of their deeds - "moderates' like you feel empowered to stick it to the "heathens". Just wait dear, when the refrai will change, and someone will declare: "like it or not, get the fuck in Guantanamo" country.
Believe me, I've seen this movie - and lived part of it. I know how it ends.
The little "moderate" power that makes you feel hollier than thou today witll snuff you and yours - right after us.
In the meanwhile, I refuse to study your deluded reality

''We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And
while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll
act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and
that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you,
all of you, will be left to just study what we do.''
Bush aide to Ron Suskind
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 01:01 PM
Response to Reply #216
229. robbed- a present for you
This song by Billy Joel reminds me of you:

Angry Young Man

There's a place in the world for the angry young man
With his working class ties and his radical plans
He refuses to bend he refuses to crawl
And he's always at home with his back to the wall
And he's proud of his scars and the battles he's lost
And struggles and bleeds as he hangs on his cross
And likes to be known as the angry young man

Give a moment or two to the angry young man
With his foot in his mouth and his heart in his hand
He's been stabbed in the back he's been misunderstood
It's a comfort to know his intentions are good
And he sits in his room with a lock on the door
With his maps and his medals laid out on the floor
And he likes to be known as the angry young man

I believe I've passed the age of consciousness and righteous rage
I found that just surviving was a noble fight
I once believed in causes too
I had my pointless point of view
And life went on no matter who was wrong or right

And there's always a place for the angry young man
With his fist in the air and his head in the sand
And he's never been able to learn from mistakes
So he can't understand why his heart always breaks
And his honor is pure and his courage is well
And he's fair and he's true and he's boring as hell
And he'll go to the grave as an angry old man

Yes there's always a place for the angry young man
With his working class ties and his radical plans
He refuses to bend he refuses to crawl
And he's always at home with his back to the wall
And he's proud of his scars and the battles he's lost
And struggles and bleeds as he hangs on his cross
And likes to be known as the angry young man
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Mandate My Ass Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 08:56 AM
Response to Reply #199
221. Anybody who gets "chased off" into Bush's camp
Edited on Wed Nov-17-04 08:56 AM by Mandate My Ass
because of this issue has no business calling themselves a Christian or a supporter of democratic principles.

I suspect anybody who threatens to do so when others disagree with their subjective views should just stop talking about it and do it because you'll fit in much better over there.

The posts you've ignored says a lot more about you than the ones you've answered.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
datasuspect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:03 AM
Response to Reply #221
223. anybody who gets "chased off" into bush's camp
probably was a republican/conservative to begin with and likes to put up straw man arguments on the internet to bait democrats/liberals/progressives.

think about it . . . i would rather rot in prison than support bush or the current cabal of fundamentalist conservatives.

why would you fight to retain divisive elements who could potentially be swayed by bush's actions/arguments/agenda?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:19 PM
Response to Reply #221
234. What do you suggest?
That I just sit here and let robbed spew lies about me without comment?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:24 PM
Response to Reply #221
235. "The posts you've ignored says a lot more about you than the ones you've
...answered."

Interesting statement. Which posts, specifically, are you referring to?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JudyM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:32 PM
Response to Original message
201. Unfortunately, we are evolving to a country of Christian control.
Not just foundational principles (whatever your personal view is on that), but actual control.

This is one of the more horrifying things I've read in some time:

http://cleveland.indymedia.org/news/2004/10/12982.php

Excerpts:

...Many Christian fundamentalists feel that concern for the future of our planet is irrelevant, because it has no future. They believe we are living in the End Time, when the son of God will return, the righteous will enter heaven, and sinners will be condemned to eternal hellfire. They may also believe, along with millions of other Christian fundamentalists, that environmental destruction is not only to be disregarded but actually welcomed -- even hastened -- as a sign of the coming Apocalypse.

... We are not talking about a handful of fringe lawmakers who hold or are beholden to these beliefs. The 231 legislators (all but five of them Republicans) who received an average 80 percent approval rating or higher from the leading religious-right organizations make up more than 40 percent of the U.S. Congress. These politicians include some of the most powerful figures in the U.S. government, as well as key environmental decision makers: Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, Senate Majority Whip Mitch McConnell, Senate Republican Conference Chair Rick Santorum, Senate Republican Policy Chair Jon Kyl, House Speaker Dennis Hastert, House Majority Whip Roy Blunt, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft, and quite possibly President Bush.

...Like it or not, faith in the Apocalypse is a powerful driving force in modern American politics...

... In the past, it was not deemed politically correct to ask probing questions about a lawmaker's intimate religious beliefs. But when those beliefs play a crucial role in shaping public policy, it becomes necessary for the people to know and understand them. It sounds startling, but the great unasked questions that need to be posed to the 231 U.S. legislators backed by the Christian right, and to President Bush himself, are not the kind of softballs about faith lobbed at the candidates during the recent presidential debates. They are, instead, tough, specific inquiries about the details of that faith: Do you believe we are in the End Time? Are the governmental policies you support based on your faith in the imminent Second Coming of Christ? It's not an exaggeration to say that the fate of our planet depends on our asking these questions, and on our ability to reshape environmental strategy in light of the answers.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 11:00 PM
Response to Reply #201
211. JudyM, if it makes you feel any better,
it scares the hell out of me, too.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
robbedvoter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 08:32 AM
Response to Reply #211
219. Yeah, Judy, Doohickie will be a kind master (he's a "moderate" ya know)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 12:31 PM
Response to Reply #219
225. robbed.....
Edited on Wed Nov-17-04 12:37 PM by Doohickie
You do advocate theocracy,

Cite your reason for believing this, please. You are making stuff up.

you are the cause that these fascists even get away with the enormity of their deeds - "moderates' like you feel empowered to stick it to the "heathens".


And just how have I "stuck it" to anyone?

Just wait dear, when the refrai (what the heck is that?) will change, and someone will declare: "like it or not, get the fuck in Guantanamo" country.
Believe me, I've seen this movie - and lived part of it. I know how it ends.


I have no clue what you are talking about. Are you trying to claim you've been held at Gitmo?

The little "moderate" power that makes you feel hollier than thou today witll snuff you and yours - right after us.
In the meanwhile, I refuse to study your deluded reality


You're apparently so bitter that you can't have a reasonable conversation. You call me deluded, yet you are jumping to wild conclusions about me without any evidence to back them up.



You're just a troll.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Muddy Waters Guitar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
206. Yes, but...
The precepts of Judeo-Christian belief systems were undoubtedly important among the Founding Fathers, but as far as the government itself was concerned, they unequivocally wanted it to be a secular organ. The US system of governance is a brainchild of the Enlightenment, and the Framers saw the country as a sort of Englightenment experiment. They were inspired by figures like Montesquieu, Newton, Locke, and others who mixed the idea of a secular government with the notions of human perfectibility that so defined the Enlightenment. In so doing, Jefferson, Madison, Washington, Franklin, et al. believed they were protecting both religion and government from the corrupting outcomes that emerge when they're mixed.

Jefferson himself explicity expressed his belief that the US government should serve as a working and inviting model for Muslims, Hindus, Deists, and many others alongsides traditional Judeo-Christians. Considering that this country now has about 10 million Muslims (and growing very fast), not to mention many Hindus, Buddhists, Wiccans, pagans, and whomever else, one has to be careful about shoving "in your face" demands against worshipers of diverse creeds. I'm a Presbyterian Christian myself, but I never claim to a non-Christian that mine is the exclusive path to divinity. This is precisely the path to all the madness of the religious wars that the Founders were most adamant to prevent. I'd hate to see their most cherished aspirations turned on their head.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 11:02 PM
Response to Reply #206
212. Muddy Waters Guitar: Thank you
Your sentence, "The precepts of Judeo-Christian belief systems were undoubtedly important among the Founding Fathers, but as far as the government itself was concerned, they unequivocally wanted it to be a secular organ," said more straightforwardly what my initial post intended to say.

That name looks familiar... do you post on Ship-of-fools? Just curious.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-16-04 11:11 PM
Response to Original message
213. No it's not
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
datasuspect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 08:57 AM
Response to Reply #213
222. didn't you know that
jesus loves the little (WHITE) children?

have you done anything else with the god jr. pencil drawings?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RUDUing2 Donating Member (968 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 03:07 PM
Response to Original message
231. America may have been founded by people w/a judeo/christian
background..but it is a Secular Country...and that is how those judeo/christian founding fathers wanted it..and what they worked very hard to make sure it would always be...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:01 PM
Response to Reply #231
233. If you read my original post, you will see I said pretty much the same
thing.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RUDUing2 Donating Member (968 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 07:41 AM
Response to Reply #233
241. difference is that I don't think that makes the US a *judeo-christian*
nation, either currently or historically...IMO it makes it a *secular* nation of no religious background, if we are going from a historical and what the founding fathers intended basis.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Doohickie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 09:22 AM
Response to Reply #241
243. Okay... I think the stumbling block here is the definition
of what is meant by a "Judeo-Christian nation". And after reading all that posted here, I guess I was wrong, at least in this audience, to assert that "having significant influence from the Judeo-Christian tradition" is the same as being a "Judeo-Christian nation".

I could say more about that and why I made the statement, but as they say here in Texas, the first thing about getting out of a hole is to know when to stop diggin'.

So at this point I guess I'll plead no further contest and throw myself on the mercy of the court.




And I guess in the future, I need to be more careful how I raise "thought provoking" issues; what I considered thought provoking may well be inflammatory to others.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
RUDUing2 Donating Member (968 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 09:44 AM
Response to Reply #243
246. lol....okay pax..nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Redleg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
232. Why must we insist on these semantics?
EOM
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Pithlet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Nov-18-04 02:42 PM
Response to Reply #232
249. My guess?
Threads like this are meant to whip up everyone into a frenzy so they can prove some point that "moderates" are driven away, and this thread is proof. Just a hunch.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
immoderate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-17-04 09:41 PM
Response to Original message
239. I've got to say it...
The only Judeo-Christian tradition is that of Christians killing Jews. Until the late 20th century, there is no other significant interaction between those two religions.

I await your correction if I have missed anything.

--IMM
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Fri Jul 11th 2014, 08:36 PM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (Through 2005) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC