The Instigator
johnwooding1
Pro (for)
Winning
33 Points
The Contender
impactyourworld89
Con (against)
Losing
24 Points

State and Religion need to be kept apart

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/4/2008 Category: Religion
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,137 times Debate No: 1348
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (10)
Votes (19)

 

johnwooding1

Pro

The reason the pilgrims on the Mayflower came over seas, to what was back then 'The new world',was to escape religious persecution by the British government. May I point out that the British government was heavily influenced by the church.
I am not in any way trying to insult religion. I have the opinion that if religion were to seep into state again America would only be retrogressing. Now hear me out I think that every one is entitled to their own beliefs and religion is a great way for many people to find themselves. Just for all of you who disagree try to at least consider my point.
impactyourworld89

Con

Hello,

The pilgrims left England because of religious persecution. But it wasn't simply because religion was involved in the government. The British government forced their religion on the people. America never has, nor ever will be like that. This is why the founding fathers put the establishment clause in the constituion. It says that Government cannot establish a relgion. But it also says that we have the free exercise to practice it. The founding fathers did not want what happened in England to happen here. No where in that phrase is found "separation of church and state" Taking all religion out of the picture is not the answer. In fact it poses the same problem, just on the other end. Without any religion, you are actually practicing and forcing atheism. (The religion of practicing no religion)
Debate Round No. 1
johnwooding1

Pro

Never did I ever say abolish religion. If religion were to be separated from the government, religion would still be the same it just would not have a say in the governments actions. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution says: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion; or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…." The U.S. Supreme Court has interpreted this clause to mean that religion and government must stay separate for the benefit of both. We must continue this wise policy. As Thomas Jefferson once said "I am for freedom of religion, and against all maneuvers to bring about a legal ascendancy of one sect over another." I would like to give credit to Americans United for separation of church and state website: www.au.org
impactyourworld89

Con

I'm assuming when you said "abolish religion" you were referring to me saying taking it out of the picture. In no way did that mean abolish, it meant not letting it become involved with government actions.
Its interesting that you bring up separation of church and state. I would like to point out that that phrase is not found in any legal, historical document. It is not found in the declaration, the constitution or the first amendment. Furthermore, the discussion of the ninety founding fathers who framed the First Amendment (which the Courts now tell us means "separation of church and state") are recorded in the Congressional Journal from June 7 to September 25, 1789. Interestingly, not once in those months of discussion did one of the founders ever mention that phrase. Doesn't it seem logical that if they had intended today's doctrine of "separation of church and state" that at least one of those ninety men would have mentioned it? So, why is it that the court has decided that that phrase should be the law of the land. Its also interesting that you bring up Thomas Jefferson. He was not even at the constitutional convention when the first amendment was ratified, so how can he be the expert as many people today say he is? But since you quoted him, so will I. " Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath? Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that His justice cannot sleep forever"
James Wilson, a signer of the Constitution and an original Justice on the US supreme court, explained: "Human law must rest its authority ultimately upon the authority of that law which is divine…. Far from being rivals or enemies, religion and law are twin sisters, friends, mutual assistants"

So contrary to what is often asserted today, the founders never intended that God's Word or His principles be separated from public life. They knew these principles were vital to the success of our new government.
Debate Round No. 2
johnwooding1

Pro

You keep implying that seperating religion from state is the same thing as banning people from thier religion. However it isnt. If religion was seperated from state the curch members would still be going to sunday mass. Religion would still carry on it just wouldnt be involved in government actions.
impactyourworld89

Con

First off, I would like to state this. I would like all of the voters of this debate to actually read the arguments before voting instead of voting on belief. The winner should be decided on how they present the information, not just what side they are on. With this said, I will finish the debate

I would like to point out that except for the incorrect implication that I was thinking this would abolish religion, my opponent has not refuted my points in either one of his arguments.

Now to the debate,

I am not implying that this would abolish religion. Did I not say in my last argument " I'm assuming when you said "abolish religion" you were referring to me saying taking it out of the picture. In no way did that mean abolish, it meant not letting it become involved with government actions"

You say: Putting on the back burner and telling people when and where they can worship and when they can't isn't right either.

You obviously do not realize how much religion has a say in Government and law. Most of our laws center around Biblical principals. (I'm probably going to get slammed for saying this, but you can't hide from the truth.) Murder is a crime, guess what the Bible says "Do not Murder" (Exodus 20:13) Burglary and robbery is a crime, oh, guess what, the Bible says "Do not steal" (Exodus 20:15)
Government run organizations also benefit from the Bible. Post Offices and banks are not open on Sunday. The Bible says "Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy". (Exodus 20:8) Wikipedia calls the Sabbath "a weekly day of rest and/or worship that is observed in the Judeo-Christian faiths" Miriam Webster's definition of the Christian Sabbath is "Sunday observed among Christians as a day of rest and worship"

So, are you saying, by completely separating religion from the Government that murder and robbery should be allowed and that government organizations should be forced to open 7 days a week. Like it or not, religion is all around us. It will be impossible to not let it in government actions. The men and women passing laws in Congress, both on the state and the federal level will bring their personal faith into how they vote or what bills they pass. I've worked on the house floor before. I know that this is true.

I will close with this statement. The majority of the founding fathers were Christians and they did intend for citizens to have complete religious freedom. This means wherever, whenever. They did not want us to not be able to pray at football games, or not let little children see the Ten Commandments in a public school for fear of them seeing it and actually listening to it. (Yes, these were real Supreme Court Cases) They certainly didn't intend for Separation of Church and State.
Debate Round No. 3
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by griffinisright 9 years ago
griffinisright
Great debate, impactyourwo rld89 I believe you owned on this one!
Posted by kannonuk4 9 years ago
kannonuk4
thanks but honestly reiterating my point , what does religion have to do with government look in the middle east religion is government for many countries they are run by religion please don't think i am racist or anti-semitic (semitic is more then just jews look up the definition!) but they follow an ancient law that needs modernizing taking ideas from religions is fine but only having one religion pulled through and having law entirely based of one religion is wrong but some laws e.g. the commandment Not to kill is one that should not be missed as it is relevant but for example stoning laws that is just outdated and cannot be kept with the growth and change of society today. please answer if you wish to add to my point or contradict me i look foward to it
Posted by johnwooding1 9 years ago
johnwooding1
kannonuk4 you have very good points and I have to say I agree with you 100%
Posted by kannonuk4 9 years ago
kannonuk4
Im new to this website and dont know how to comment. Im originally from a country bound by church and state and the persecution other religions faced including myself a Jew was outrageous. where now in america where i call home there are religous freedoms and The Constituion a literary master peace and one of the greatest written Laws there are creates a stable government without a single mention of G-d except for the Date which was meerly common practice despite the fact that the document was written predominantly by christians. also the first ammendment intitles people to freedom of religion. meaning you can practice the religion of your choice without persecution and if one religion ran government then there could not be an equality in society and the first ammendment would be violated so those who disagree with seperation of church and state think at the people you could potentialy be affecting!
Posted by johnwooding1 9 years ago
johnwooding1
Oh I didn't know that. Well you learn something new every day.
Posted by anwermate 9 years ago
anwermate
for this site, that is pretty young
Posted by johnwooding1 9 years ago
johnwooding1
Well I'm 14 I just look very young
Posted by anwermate 9 years ago
anwermate
Your quite young, not that thats a bad thing.
Posted by johnwooding1 9 years ago
johnwooding1
anwermate the picture of my profile is current.
Posted by anwermate 9 years ago
anwermate
This debate has very little clash, you should be arguing about the disadvantages and the advantages of the government, namely government officials like congress and supreme court and prez and such, being influenced by religion. Or at the least, the legality/illegality of it. Also johnwooding, is that picture of you current?
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