A Shocking Betrayal Of The Separation Of Church And State

First Amendment Rally - Union Square NYC - photo by Luke Redmond

The following originally appeared as a comment to: PA House Declares: Jefferson Can Take His ‘Wall’ And Shove It.

In January the Pennsylvania House of Representatives declared 2012 the “Year of the Bible” when they passed Resolution No. 535. Over a month has passed since the PA House violated the First Amendment to the Constitution and hardly anyone has noticed. How is this not getting more mainstream press coverage? This is a shocking betrayal of the separation of church and state.

It’s appalling that this resolution passed with a unanimous vote. Every member of the PA House should ask themselves how people of other faiths should interpret this resolution. But more importantly, allowing bills such as this to pass, sets a precedent to allow the same thing to be passed at some point in the future when the makeup of the House isn’t so Christian. For example, if demographics start to shift and a few key voting districts happen to have strong Muslim voting blocks, might the House pass a resolution declaring the Month of the Koran? Something tells me that hypothetical resolution would get a lot more press than this real world resolution has received. The point of separating church and state is not to promote a lack of religion, it’s to allow all religions to have equal respect. The fact that Christians in the House felt this resolution was necessary, much less permissible, shows how completely out of touch they are, and more importantly, how uninterested they are in representing all of their constituents to the extent possible.

The incongruity of these right-wing ideologues is off the charts. They spout over-the-top rhetoric about toppling oppressive religious theocracies while actively attempting to turn their own country into just such a theocracy. If there’s any doubt, you have only to look at recent Republican polls (especially in PA) to see that religious and social issues consistently make the top of voters’ lists when considering candidates. Passing this bill serves to turn us into the very thing we are sending our children across the globe to fight.

Steve

photo by Luke Redmond


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