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James Madison's Summary of the First Amendment

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Quixote1818 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 12:43 AM
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James Madison's Summary of the First Amendment
I normally would not post this here but the other post about the US Christian Nation Crap prompted me to as I think this is important in fighting the Religious Right! I wanted to post this to give people more firepower on what the first Amendment means. I get so sick of people saying the first Amendment was only meant to prevent a National Church and so it's OK to have prayer in schools or the Ten Commandments in the County Courthouse. Here is what it says:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;

This is a sooooo vague and can be interpreted many different ways thats why I like to use Madison's Summary of the First Amendment which goes into greater detail.

In James Madison's summary of the First Amendment he wrote: Congress should not establish a religion and enforce the legal observation of it by law, nor compel men to worship God in any manner contrary to their conscience, or that one sect might obtain a pre-eminence, or two combined together, and establish a religion to which they would compel others to conform (Annals of Congress, Sat Aug 15th, 1789 pages 730 - 731).

In other words their is a "SEPERATION OF CHURCH AND STATE"!!!
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DireStrike Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 01:05 AM
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1. Madison's summary doesn't help, IMO
It only says:

-No compelled observation of religions made by congress
-No compelled... " " " made by anybody else.

Doesn't say anything about that other stuff... and I really wish it did.

Prayer in school is insane. The 10 commandments... that I'm pretty much ok with.
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unblock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 01:19 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. why are you ok with the 10 commandments in schools or courts?
clearly religious, especially the ones about god directly.
they also prohibit things that aren't even illegal, such as adultery and coveting.
it has NO BUSINESS being in public schools or in courtrooms
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Maat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 01:32 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. I don't want to see the Ten Commandments ...
it represents a Christian religion - and I'm not Christian. And, I, as a taxpayer should not have to fund growth of another religion or religious system.

You can have it there in the hall - 'for historical purposes' when you allow everyone else's - including the atheists. Oh, can't afford that? Then don't have any religious symbols, showing preference for one faith over all others.
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Quixote1818 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 01:47 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. Yes, if you let just one in thats State Sponsored Religion.
If you let one in then you have to let all religions in which is like opening a Box of Pandoras as Ex. Gov. King of New Mexico use to say.
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Quixote1818 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 01:42 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. nor compel men to worship God in any manner contrary to their conscience
Seems obvious to me that this line is precisely about things like Prayer in schools. And the 10 commandments would lie under a State Sponsored Religion because they are Christian and Jewish. You can bet the house that the 10 Commandments will be taken out of courthouses as soon as the Supreme Court Rules on this.
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unblock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 01:52 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. i wouldn't bet against this supreme court
what's transparently obvious to you and me doesn't matter to the supremes. at least 3 votes a guaranteed to support the 10 commandments, provided rehnquist can manage to vote.

the usual 5-4 will probably find that posting the 10 commandments is "not sufficiently damaging" to non-judeochristians to be barred by the first amendment, just as "in god we trust" on coins supposedly doesn't establish a religion or religious belief.
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Quixote1818 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 02:04 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. In God We Trust is generic but the Ten Commandments represent
only two religions. I don't want my tax dollars going to pay for another persons religion. You could be right but I kind of think it will be 6-4 in our favor on this one. Even a Conservative Talk Show Host here in Albuquerque thinks the SC will rule that the 10 commandments represent state sponsored religion when posted in the courthouse.
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unblock Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-15-04 05:38 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. "in god we trust" is not generic. MORE generic, yes. but generic, no.
it obviously excludes atheists and agnostics.
it also excludes those believing in multiple gods as well. i've not asked any hindus, but i suspect they wouldn't appreciate the phrase.
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