American Heritage Alliance

America…Our Christian Heritage,
Our History and Faith in God

"The Deception of Separation of Church and State"
Compiled and Written by Murray Hornsby, Director
American Heritage Alliance Inc..

Chapter 5
Foremost Judicial Scholars Opinions in the 1800's about Church and State Issues

Joseph Story, the foremost historian of the founding era, Justice of The Supreme Court from 1811-1845, underscored the truth in his book, Commentaries on the Constitution, 1833: "The First Amendment was not intended to withdraw the Christian religion as a whole from the protection of Congress. At the time, the general if not the universal sentiment in America was, that Christianity ought to receive the encouragement from the state so far as was compatible with the private rights of conscience and the freedom of worship. Any attempt to level all religions, and to make it a matter of state policy to hold all in utter indifference would have created universal indignation. The real object of (the First Amendment) was not to countenance, much less to advance, Mahometanism, or Judaism, or infidelity, by prostrating Christianity, but to exclude all rivalry among Christian sects, and to prevent any national ecclesiastical establishment which should give to a hierarchy the exclusive patronage of the national government. It thus cut off the means of religious persecution and of the rights of conscience in matters of religion, which had been trampled upon almost from the days of the Apostles to the present age…"…from A Familiar Exposition of the United States, 1840 by Joseph Story, "Trial and Error: The ACLU and Religious Expression" by George Grant, America's God and Country, William Federer, p.574

Thomas Cooley's (Justice of Michigan Supreme Court 1864-1885-writer of a number of law manuals, the most famous being "Cooley's Constitutional Limitations", which was published in 1868) eminence rivaled that of Story. Cooley stated in his treatise…"But while thus careful to establish, protect, and defend religious freedom and equality, the American constitutions contain no provisions which prohibit the authorities from such solemn recognition of a superintending Providence in public transactions and exercises as the general religious sentiment of mankind inspires, and as seems meet and proper in finite and dependent beings. Whatever may be the shades of religious belief, all must acknowledge the fitness of recognizing in important human affairs the superintending care and control of the Great Governor of the Universe, and of acknowledging with thanksgiving His boundless favors, or bowing in contrition when visited with the penalties of His broken laws. No principle of constitutional law is violated when thanksgiving or fast days are appointed, when chaplains are designated for the army or navy; when legislative sessions are opened with prayer or the reading of the Scriptures, or when religious teaching is encouraged by a general exemption of the houses of religious worship from taxation for the support of state government. Undoubtedly, the spirit of the Constitution will require, in all these cases, that care be taken to avoid discrimination in favor of or against any one religious denomination or sect; but the power to do any of these things does not become unconstitutional simply because of its susceptibility to abuse."… It would seem from this evidence that the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment has acquired a well accepted meaning; it forbade the establishment of a national religion, and forbade preferences among religious sects or denominations. The Establishment Clause did not require government neutrality between religion and irreligion, nor did it prohibit the Federal Government from providing nondiscriminatory aid to religion. There is simply no historical foundation for the proposition that the Framers intended to build a "wall of separation" that was constitutionalized in Everson vs. Board of Education… Justice William Rhenquist, dissenting opinion Wallace vs. Jaffree, 1985

"Men such as Jefferson and Madison would recoil in horror if they could see how their words, ideas and actions have been misrepresented to inhibit rather than expand religious freedom. The First Amendment was designed to restrict governmental power, not religious expression. The Kremlin used the exact phrase of 'separation of church and state' argument that Justices William Brennan, Thurgood Marshal, and Harry Blackman used in an attempt to completely obliterate the religious life of the nation. Article 124 of the former Soviet Constitution stated: 'In order to ensure to citizens freedom of conscience, the church in the U.S.S.R. is separated from the state, and the school from the church. Freedom of religious worship and freedom of anti-religious propaganda is recognized for all citizens.'
This position is identical to that of the American Civil Liberties Union, People for the American Way, and the National Education Association. 'Its fine for people to practice their Christian faith so long as they do so in private', they say. Like the former Soviets, radical secularists make every attempt to avoid a frontal attack on Christianity, which would be unpopular, and they attack it instead on procedurals grounds and under the guise of such acceptable notions as 'pluralism' and 'liberty of conscience.' The practical effect of the prevailing interpretation of the First Amendment's religious clause is that the secularization of America has become the law of the land.

Ancient Greece imploded into a spiritual abyss before it was defeated militarily, and from this many parallels can be drawn with the West today. The free world is threatened now, not because of lack of resources, but from a spiritual and moral void, which is always accompanied by a corrosion of the will. With religious expression now outlawed from large portions of American public life- in the name of a very distorted civil libertarian creed- can it be long before America goes the way of Greece and Rome? Tocqueville had this to say of those who attack faith in God in the name of pluralism: 'When such men as these attack religious beliefs, they obey the dictates of their passions, not their interests. Despotism may be able to do without faith, but freedom cannot. Religion is much more needed in the republic they advocate than in the monarchy they attack, and in democratic republics most of all. How could society escape destruction if, when political ties are relaxed, moral ties are not tightened?' Tocqueville, although he made this observation more than a century ago, could just as easily have been talking to the Supreme Court. Asked Tocqueville: 'What will happen to a people master of itself if it is not subject to God?'

The great task ahead must be to return to first principles, principles upon which America's founders were in overwhelming agreement. For they were firmly convinced that liberty was essential to happiness and prosperity in this world; that constitutional government was essential to liberty; that the preservation of both was contingent on Christian morality informing both voters and leaders; and that Christian morality could not stand long without firm faith in Christ. As Tocqueville wrote: 'Liberty regards religion as its companion in all its battles and triumphs, as the cradle of its infancy and the divine source of its claims,' which in itself was but an echo of Paul's warning to the Galatians: 'it was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to the yoke of slavery. Galatians 5:1" 13

Gallup Poll 1999 on Question of Bible Study In Public Schools

The Gallup Organization reports, "In the aftermath of the recent school shootings in the nation's schools, more people are calling for a return to traditional family values- including prayer in the classrooms."
· Some 70% favor allowing spoken daily prayers in the classroom
· 71% want the Bible to be used in literature, history, and social studies classes
· Nearly 3 out of every 4 want to let public schools display the Ten Commandments
· An overwhelming 83% favor allowing students to offer prayer aloud as part of official graduation ceremonies

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13 "Faith and Freedom" by Benjamin Hart.
14 Gallup Poll 7/9/99