The Instigator
senorsavas
Pro (for)
Losing
15 Points
The Contender
cody30228
Con (against)
Winning
49 Points

100% Separation of Church and State

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/2/2008 Category: Religion
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,227 times Debate No: 1270
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (21)
Votes (20)

 

senorsavas

Pro

Religion should be 100% separated from government. Here is my rationale:

1. There are thousands of religions each with various belief system. The differences in religion start wars, create hate and numerous other crimes against humanity. Since there isn't one religion that all people can believe in, or that wouldn't polarize the country it should not be part of government. Having the words 'In God we Trust' on our currency is offensive to many people in this country. Our currency would work just as well without those words and wouldn't offend anyone.

2. Religious institutions do not pay taxes therefore have no right to any voice in government.

3. Our founding fathers, Jefferson, Madison, Washington, etc...none of them were overly pious. They left a country (England) filled with Religious persecution and wanted their new country to avoid the same mistakes. They purposefully left religion out of government because they knew first hand how poisonous and polarizing it would become. They knew the thirteen colonies would be incapable of agreeing on anything religious in the constitution so they though it best that all things Church and State were kept separate. There is a great book "the moral minority" which backs this up with letters from the founding fathers.

4. It's dangerous to govern by religion because it's a bunch of hogwash. It's make believe like Peter Pan and Winnie the Pooh. We should govern by science and facts. For example, a religious person might say, God will save us from global warming. A rational person might say, we need to do something about global warning. A religious person might say, God told me to invade Iraq. A rational person might say, if we invade Iraq we'll get start a war we can't win and kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people, kill and maim thousands of our troops, spend 200 billion dollars which could have been spent on much needed domestic issues such as health care.
cody30228

Con

I, if anything, am appalled at some of the things you just said. I took up this debate because it struck a personal chord. But i will try to keep things professional.

You stated religion should be separated, so to decide this, we will discern what benefits come from each side and measure them up.

First, why your benefits are fake
1. Our currency, motto, and other government items of which you speak are historic. America was founded by religious people for the ability to worship. The phrase "In God We Trust" should not offend anyone. First, God is not capitalized. Well it is, but not in the sense of it's a proper noun. It's a phrase. Every word is upper cased. Thus, it would not offend polytheistic religions because it states in some higher being we trust. that can mean many. next, those monotheistic religions that don't use th word God, but they use the word god. They use it as a noun, not a proper noun. The phrase can mean a noun, thus not offending some religions like Islam.
1 b. Why your side would hurt our country
If we changed the motto and our currency, are you aware of how much money and time it would cost us? we would have to reprint EVERY SINGLE PIECE OF CURRENCY. we would even have to replace the MARBLE STATUES in our capitol that say in god we trust on them. Offending some people or spending billions of dollars. I say it is better to remain the same

2. No taxes
What you sir, are imposing, is an aristocratic elitist government where only some people are active in the government (rich). Religious institutes only get money through charity. they make no money. how could they possible pay taxes? almost every religious building would be closed down. The only reason our government would have any separation of church and state is because it guarantees liberties. Among them is the right to partake in the government. So you are hypocritical with you second point.

3. Our founding fathers, were Deists. They believed in god. That's besides the point. Before our "founding" fathers came to America, the original colonists practiced religion openly and in the government. Pilgrims, Quakers, Shakers, Protestants, all came so they could practice religion. And furthermore, why should the beliefs of the founding fathers matter?

4. Religon is fake
Ok, what the f@#*!
If you can prove that every single religion is wrong, i will cede this match. But you can't do that! Religion, real or not, has positive effects.
This from
http://www.heritage.org...
* The strength of the family unit is intertwined with the practice of religion. Churchgoers8 are more likely to be married, less likely to be divorced or single, and more likely to manifest high levels of satisfaction in marriage.
* Church attendance is the most important predictor of marital stability and happiness.
* The regular practice of religion helps poor persons move out of poverty. Regular church attendance, for example, is particularly instrumental in helping young people to escape the poverty of inner-city life.
* Religious belief and practice contribute substantially to the formation of personal moral criteria and sound moral judgment.
* Regular religious practice generally inoculates individuals against a host of social problems, including suicide, drug abuse, out-of-wedlock births, crime, and divorce.
* The regular practice of religion also encourages such beneficial effects on mental health as less depression (a modern epidemic), more self-esteem, and greater family and marital happiness.
* In repairing damage caused by alcoholism, drug addiction, and marital breakdown, religious belief and practice are a major source of strength and recovery.
* Regular practice of religion is good for personal physical health: It increases longevity, improves one's chances of recovery from illness, and lessens the incidence of many killer diseases.
The overall impact of religious practice is illustrated dramatically in the three most comprehensive systematic reviews of the field.9 Some 81 percent of the studies showed the positive benefit of religious practice, 15 percent showed neutral effects, and only 4 percent showed harm.10 Each of these systematic reviews indicated more than 80 percent benefit, and none indicated more than 10 percent harm. Even this 10 percent may be explained by more recent social science insights into "healthy religious practice" and "unhealthy religious practice."11 This latter notion will be discussed later -- it is seen generally by most Americans of religious faith as a mispractice of religion. Unfortunately, the effects of unhealthy religious practice are used to downplay the generally positive influence of religion.12 This both distorts the true nature of religious belief and practice and causes many policymakers to ignore its positive social consequences.

This is all just part of it. Read the rest of the website and learn something
Debate Round No. 1
senorsavas

Pro

You said "If you can prove that every single religion is wrong, i will cede this match."

There are hundreds...maybe thousands of religions in the world. And the people who believe and follow those religions all believe their religion is true ...they believe their religion is the best one of all religions. Christians believe Jesus is the son of god. Jews are still holding out for their savior. Ancient Egyptians believed in RA the sun god. Ancients Greeks had Apollo. Romans had a long list of gods too. The list goes on and on for current religions and all the religions in the past. They all believed something passionately and very different from each other. And they believed it with all their might and they even killed people in support of their beliefs. Were they all correct? Were they all justified? Perhaps one of the current religions is the real deal? You know, the one that is really really true. Or perhaps it's one of the future religions that hasn't been invented yet? Maybe aliens will come to earth and substantiate Scientology (the one invented by the science fiction writer) as the real, true religion.

My point is that it's impossible for all religions to be correct. If they were all right or just a few of them were right then we would have thousands of gods or several gods jostling for position. Conversely, if only one was right then everyone would believe it without question. It's sort of like the sun rising in the east. It's a scientifically proven fact and everyone in the world believes it without question. There is no debate nor banter. That said, there is no religious equivalent. For example, if Christianity is the real deal, the one correct description of god, by default that means all other past, current and future religions were wrong, are wrong, and will be wrong...it means their gods are just a sham and their followers duped. Did billions of people waste their time on bogus religions only to find out than there is only just one correct religion...and it wasn't theirs. So we have a problem because there can't be more than one real, true, correct god, right? It would be messy...imagine if the sunrise happened in the west every other Tuesday....

Here is some more detail to chew on. Christians believe that Mary was a virgin and found with the child of the Holy Ghost. The Greek demigod Perseus was born when the god Jupiter visited the virgin Danae as a shower of gold and got her with child. The god Buddha was born through an opening in his mother's flank. Catlicus the serpent-skirted caught a little ball of feathers from the sky and hid it in her bosom, and the Aztec god Huitzilopochtli was thus conceived. The virgin Nana took a pomegranate from the tree watered by the blood of the slain Agdestris, and laid it in her bosom, and gave birth to the god Attis. The virgin daughter of a Mongol king awoke one night and found herself bathed in a great light, which caused her to give birth to Genghis Khan. Krishna was born of the virgin Devaka. Horus was born of the virgin Rhea Slyvia. Wow, that's a ton of religions that truly believe their god was born to a virgin by some miracle. Are they all right? Is only one them right? Or are they all a just a bunch of made up fairy tales. Any rational person will chose the later.

Now, since this is a debate...you know...supported by facts and not faith, I think on this point alone you should cede the debate. Unless of course you can make the point that your religion is the right one, the only one, the true religion that everyone should follow...that your virgin is the real virgin and all others are just posers. Please entertain us all.

Btw - all those points about religion doing good things. Nice job. Next time include all the death and hate brought on by religion...it will paint the real picture...you know, roses and thorns.

btw2 - I think everyone has a right to believe in whatever they want...and to practice however they want...as long as it stays out of government and schools. Fairy tales are for 2 year-olds not for senators and professors.

btw 3 - I wasn't advocating changing our currency to remove "In God We Trust". I was just using it to make a point that having in on the bills is offensive. Eveyone uses currency but everyone doesn't believe in god or the same god...so it's offensive to some people. Maybe the money we print in the future won't have it on there. This way, it wouldn't cost anything extra and nobody would be offended. In fact we might even save money on ink.

....ahem....the ball is in your court...
cody30228

Con

Let's see. I will first focus on the validity of a religion.
1. You didn't prove that every religion was false
2. You simply listed of many different stories

Religion is A FAITH! people believe in it. it is true to them. this goes into deep philosophy about the senses and transcendentalism.
Why is a chair a chair?
Because we call it a chair.
Why is Jesus my savior?
because I say he is.
What are you typing with? a keyboard. why is it a keyboard? why is it called typing? because we say it is. we have faith that it is. Every religion is true to the person that believes it.

so you failed to meet my burden so you lose

but to further on what you said

1. religion harming people. yes, religion does hurt some people.
WWI
WWII
Civil War
the three most costly war in America's history weren't caused by religion
if you want to paint a roses and thorns picture, don't leave out the dimensions of the thorns to convince they are bigger than the rose.

2. stay out of government
to start, lets look at the point you ignored
- religion can't have taxes
you ignored that argument i made, so now you only have one reason why religion should be out of governments: because people don't agree. the protection of religion itself in a government is needed. if we exclude religion from the government, the government can not protect religion. The government can support the growth of religion and still stay unbiased in which religion is right.

3. currency
you want to change teh currency over time, which is fine. but that message shows that the government does not respect religion at all. it appears to me you ignored my argument why our currency is not offensive. am i wrong? you left it alone so i assume you agree with me. the phrase is not offensive so it shouldn't offend anyone

back to you
Debate Round No. 2
21 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
uh, where have you seen a menorah displayed on public property where christian symbolism was denied?
Posted by kels1123 9 years ago
kels1123
I think people should be able to decorate for any religious holiday they believe in anywhere as long as it is appropriate. I wouldn't be okay if someone tried to put a something that promotes death or something harmful and tried to say that was religion. I have no problem with menorahs being displayed. It does not bother me. My problem is when the Nativity can not be put up , but that other things can ie a menorah.
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
No, and I agree with that. However, in my community someone did try to place a menorah next to a Christmas tree and was denied the right. You may not have that intention but the controversy created is ridiculous and so many Christians DO get upset and say the Jew is trying to defile Christmas.
Posted by cody30228 9 years ago
cody30228
community, no rules about lawn ornaments. Now here is my question, what is wrong with displaying any religious decorum. If i put a nativity scene, even in a park say, am i
a) denying someone the right to do the same with a menorah
or
b) forcing someone else to be Christian

i see no violation in rights
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
where? was it on someone's yard or a privately owned area? in that case, you're right, and someone should file a suit. my grandma had to take her mother mary statue down from in front of her house, and its her house that she paid for-- no, I don't think that is okay. hOWEVER, if you're in a suburban community that regulates yard rules and they say you can't put religious stuff on your yard, there isn't much you can do. But if you can't put up a nativity scene then nobody should be able to put up a menorah or anything in that vein.
Posted by cody30228 9 years ago
cody30228
not shortchanged?
how bout the nativity scene being banned in my neighborhood? not shortchanged my...
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
How are Christians being short changed?

You can still go to church, you can still pray, you can still wear whatever Christian paraphenelia you want, you can still have your little Christian stores, you can still have your Evangelical TV shows, you can still go door to door and piss people off, you can still ring your bells so loud they wake people up at 7AM, you can still put Christmas lights up on your house and you can still write "GOD BLESS YOU!" on commercial windows.

You are just required to have the same freedoms as everyone else. Unless you want me to put up a Buddhist Statue next to the 10 Commandments in your court house, then I don't see what the problem is. You don't want other religions being plastered all over your public buildings, but if you plaster yours they have the right to be there too.
Posted by AmericanSoldier 9 years ago
AmericanSoldier
I never said anyone should discriminate.

I merely pointed out that it was founded by Christians and its freedoms were afforded to people under the assumption that they were governed by a Christian morality.

I do not think non-Christians should be discriminated against. But today, it is Christians who are being discriminated against by the secular movement in this country. That is not right, and not in accordance with what this country was founded on.

But I bet you don't lose any sleep over some Christians being short-changed, now do you?
Posted by arrivaltime 9 years ago
arrivaltime
That you really believe this country should discriminate against anything not Christian.

That is totally disgusting.

Our founding fathers also believed in slavery and misogyny so should we, too?
Posted by AmericanSoldier 9 years ago
AmericanSoldier
What? Our founding Fathers are totally disgusting?

If you are truly a moral atheist, then you likely adhere to a Christian Morality without consciously doing so.

Please enlighten me, what is so "disgusting?"
20 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by brokenboy 6 years ago
brokenboy
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Vote Placed by gonovice 9 years ago
gonovice
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by attrition 9 years ago
attrition
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by SportsGuru 9 years ago
SportsGuru
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by kels1123 9 years ago
kels1123
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by EliteEternity 9 years ago
EliteEternity
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by Leonitus_Trujillo 9 years ago
Leonitus_Trujillo
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by Statesman 9 years ago
Statesman
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by Chob 9 years ago
Chob
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by mmadderom 9 years ago
mmadderom
senorsavascody30228Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03