Separate but equal
New Alabama Governor Robert Bentley has already started torquing people off and did it on the day of his inauguration.
Several things here.
David Silverman, president of the American Atheists group, probably had to comment as he was contacted by reporters. He, and the other contacted, probably had a lot more to say, but his (and their) comments were trimmed to fit the story.
That being said, if Silverman doesn’t like what Bentley had to say, Silverman doesn’t have to live in the United States either and certainly never has to visit Alabama where his delicate sensibilities would be offended. As for the idea of a secular government, I’m not precisely sure where he got that idea, except as a modern interpretation.
“When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”
This is not the Constitution, it is the Declaration of Independence, which means it is the foundation upon which the Constitution was made. Further the Constitutional Convention took time out to pray and seek divine guidance in drafting the august document.
Further, references the Constitution makes to religion is to prevent CONGRESS from enacting laws regarding establishment of a religion. Congress. Not the states. Other references prevent consideration of religion as a qualification for office. http://www.usconstitution.net/consttop_reli.html#original
I’ll also bet you the Gov. took the oath of office with his hand on a Bible, a traditional method of swearing people in.
There is the issue of free speech. The new governor has the right to say those words. If Silverman is offended, then Silverman is the one with the problem, not the governor.
As Silverman says, this is a diverse nation. If he means it, that means Christians are allowed to hold office. Again if he doesn’t like it, he’s welcome to set up his own country in NJ. Except we in the South tried that once.
As for the Moslem gent who found the comments disturbing, I find this equally good and entertaining. Again if he doesn’t like it, he’s welcome to leave the US and go to a country with an Islamic theocracy. He might find the repressive climate there more to his liking.
The only religious leader to accept the Gov.’s comments was a Buddhist. Tenzen Deshek found it mildly amusing, rather than inflammatory. I like that. It shows Deshek has room in his mind for new ideas.
A Jewish gent called for some understanding and tolerance. He said he didn’t think the Gov. was trying to offend anyone. Indeed Bentley wasn’t setting out to offend anyone. He was merely carrying forward one of his missions, a mission that was made evident in his campaign for governor and very evident to anyone who bothered to do a minuscule amount of background checking.
I don’t see where the Gov was forcing anyone to accept his view. He was extending an invitation. He was saying, “This works for me and I enjoy it. It’s made me a better person. Interested in trying it?”
Anyone who takes offense at such an invitation is not a very secure person.
As the Jewish Mr. Friedman said, Bentley was simply motivated by his faith.
Passion. Wow. A driving need to carry out an assigned task. A desire to bring improvements. A sincere wish to bring people into a more harmonious relationship with each other. An urgency to bring people together to work together to make their realm a better place to live for everyone.
Well. Maybe I’m projecting my faith onto Gov. Bentley, but I suspect he shares my sentiments.
Yanno, I’m just not see a lot of down side to Gov. Bentley’s remarks. I think we need more politicians like that. We need politicians with a drive to work instead of worry about being re-elected.
I like the idea that he’s offended people. People need to be shocked and rocked out of their complacent attitudes. It wakes them up. In other words, Gov. Bentley got their attention. Now can he hold their attention and get them to work on things that really matter?