Tuesday, November 1, 2011

OneAngryCultist: Voting for God

Hold on to your horses, kids, the current GOP-led Congress is finally voting on something that is nothing short of Biblical and will bring about the second-coming; cure cancer, AIDS, hemorrhoids, and result in the liberation of all humanity accomplish absolutely nothing except reaffirm, "In God We Trust" as the national motto of the United States. The proposed bill would also encourage public buildings to include the motto in their architecture because, you know, architectural redecoration is some kind of job-creation, right?!

Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Co-Chairman of the Congressional Prayer Caucus and author of H.CON.RES.13 cites the following reasons why this bill is necessary:

"President Obama inaccurately proclaimed "E Pluribus Unum' as our national motto. Last November before a worldwide audience, in a much-anticipated and much-publicized speech focusing on the United States' relationship with the Muslim world, President Obama falsely proclaimed that our national motto was E pluribus unum. The President failed to respond to congressional entreaties to issue a correction; the uncorrected transcript remains on the White House website.

Misunderstanding of the phrase "Separation of Church and State". The Supreme Court has held, “The First Amendment, however, does not say that in every and all respects there shall be a separation of Church and State. . . We find no constitutional requirement which makes it necessary for government to be hostile to religion.” The words ‘separation of church and state’ do not appear in the U.S. Constitution. Rather, the phrase originates from a letter penned by Thomas Jefferson on January 1, 1802, to the Danbury Baptist Association.

Inaccuracies and omissions in the half-billion-dollar Capitol Visitor Center. In 2008, the over half-billion dollar Capitol Visitor Center opened for the purpose of educating over 15,000 Capitol visitors daily on the “legislative process as well as the history and development of the architecture and art of the U.S. Capitol.” Yet, Capitol Visitor Center historians had sanitized the public building of any references to our national motto, including replacing the inscription of ‘In God We Trust,’ inscribed above the Speaker’s Rostrum with stars in a replica of the House Chamber and cropping an actual picture of the chamber so you could not see the words ‘In God We Trust.’ Only until Members of Congress intervened publically [sic.] and legislatively were these omissions and inaccuracies corrected."
So, essentially, what I'm reading is that Congressman Forbes took one of President Obama's gaffes a little too close to heart and is using Congress to make sure this doesn't happen again lest we all fall into godless heathenry.

Now, "Why is your OneAngryCultist chiming in on this particular issue?" you might ask. Well, because religion is important to me - not just mine, but all religions and spiritual perspectives atheism inclusive. As much as I like a little ceremonial deism here and there, H.CON.RES.13 is decidedly sectarian in nature and is part of a growing trend of denying the religious pluralism upon which this country was founded. While the issue of "separation of church and state" does not exist in the Constitution in word, the kind of religion that politicians like Forbes, Perry and others want to enshrine into law is not the kind of religion that would be recognizable by the founding fathers, let alone the 25% of non-Christians in the United States.

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