The Instigator
Iosephos_Cicero
Pro (for)
Losing
22 Points
The Contender
RMK
Con (against)
Winning
38 Points

That the United States of America is a secular nation, and should be kept that way. Religion=Poison.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/30/2007 Category: Religion
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,198 times Debate No: 1164
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (13)
Votes (18)

 

Iosephos_Cicero

Pro

In recent years there has been a call by many politicians and leading figures in the public eye to make the United States of America a Christian Nation, "Like the forefathers built." Not only is this statement a lie, it is a complete misinterpretations of what the forefathers had intentioned for this country. The mere notion that the United States is/was ever a purely Christian nation is lunacy itself. Also, the notion that the nation as a whole would be better off being a Christian nation, especially lead by evangelicals, is again lunacy based just off their actions and comments. As of recent activity, they were protesting soldiers funerals because "gays" are the cause of war and death. Thusly I state that the mere notion of religion and government are not only impossible to combine (with a positive outcome) but they are entirely incompatible. Religion when combined with public policy, is a poison, and will not end well for the country. This argument is not about a person's individual beliefs as I believe that any man/woman can believe whatever they want, however it is an argument about how Religion MUST at all costs be kept out of politics; especially politics that effect a nation such as ours, which is so diverse.
RMK

Con

With the help of Greg Nettle,

"Have you ever considered what it meant for those 56 men--an eclectic group of ministers, businessmen, teachers, university professors, sailors, captains, farmers--to sign the Declaration of Independence? This was a contract that began with the reasons for the separation from Great Britain and closed in the final paragraph stating "And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor."

Dr. Benjamin Rush, the father of American Medicine and a signer, recorded that historical day in his journal. In 1781 he wrote to John Adams, "Do you recollect the pensive and awful silence which pervaded the House when we were called up, one after another, to the table of the President of the Congress to subscribe to what was believed by many at that time to be our death warrants?"

Those 56 men, willing to risk their lives for freedom, ensured the freedoms that you and I enjoy today. And yet those very freedoms are perhaps more in jeopardy today than at any other time in history.

In 1962 public prayer was removed from the classroom. In 1963 public Bible study was removed from the public school system. In 1980 the 10 commandments were removed from school walls. The court system said that if the 10 commandments were posted on the walls of a classroom, a student might read them and then meditate on them and then be lead to obey them. And that is unconstitutional. Do not kill. Do not steal. Do not commit adultery. Incidentally, for something to be considered unconstitutional means that it would have been opposed by our Founding Fathers.

Since 1963, teenage pregnancies have increased by 553%. The divorce rate has increased by 117%. Violent crimes have increased by 544%.

Consider these statements:

If there is anything in my thoughts or style to commend, the credit is due to my parents for instilling in me an early love of the Scriptures. --Daniel Webster

It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded not by religionists but by Christians, not on religion but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. --Patrick Henry

The highest story of the American Revolution is this: It connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity. --John Adams

The Bible is the Rock on which this Republic rests. --Andrew Jackson

We've staked the whole future of American civilization not on the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all political institutions upon the capacity of each and all of us . . . to govern ourselves according to the commandments of God. The future and success of America is not in this Constitution, but in the laws of God upon which this Constitution is founded. --James Madison

It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible. --George Washington

The United States of America has existed for more than 200 years in its original form of government based on the Constitution. In comparison, in 200 years, France has had seven different forms of government. Italy is in its 48th form of government. The Soviet Union, under a Communist form of government, disintegrated. How has our nation remained so strong? Secular historians have concluded that our Constitution was derived primarily from the truth of the Bible!

America was founded not on the belief that she was blessed because God chose her but that she was blessed because she chose God. And that when we quit choosing God, we will cease to enjoy God's blessings.

If we abide by the principles taught in the Bible, our country will go on prospering and to prosper; but if we and our posterity neglect its instructions and authority, no man can tell how sudden a catastrophy may overwhelm us and bury all our glory in profound obscurity. --Daniel Webster

"What joy for the nation whose God is the Lord." (Psalm 33:12)"
Debate Round No. 1
Iosephos_Cicero

Pro

Iosephos_Cicero forfeited this round.
RMK

Con

It is obvious, through research and national documents, that this nation was founded with a Christian appeal. To refute this issue, is to be blind of documented facts. My opponent must have realized these facts upon further research.
Debate Round No. 2
Iosephos_Cicero

Pro

Iosephos_Cicero forfeited this round.
RMK

Con

It is obvious, through research and national documents, that this nation was founded with a Christian appeal. To refute this issue, is to be blind of documented facts. My opponent must have realized these facts upon further research.
Debate Round No. 3
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by spinaltap 9 years ago
spinaltap
Whatever. I am a proud American and defended myself against an unprovoked attack. So, back to the issue at hand....

"The various forms of worship, which prevailed in the Roman world, were all considered by the people to be equally true, by the philosopher as equally false, and by the magistrate as equally useful." Edward Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.

I agree wholeheartedly that Religion is not good for government.In my opinion it can and should be practiced without violating the rights of others who choose freely not to participate. In short, if we keep religion out of government the vast majority of people would be content and well served. If we have a religiously based government only a small minority (religious right) would be happy with it and a great many would be find it not in the best interest of the nation.

Furthermore, if we did have a religious government, which religion would it be? Muslim? Chirstian? (select one of the various flavors) Mormon? Scientology? The founding fathers fully believed in freedom of religion so people could choose to follow whatever they wanted. They did not intend a religion to be forced upon the people. Just at they did not intent for someone running for political office to have to ascribe to a certain religious doctrine or belief.
Posted by impactyourworld89 9 years ago
impactyourworld89
Spinaltap, you're not doing much better. Lets leave the personal arguments off the comment board and stick to civilly and professionally debating the subject.
Posted by spinaltap 9 years ago
spinaltap
breaker11 -
I simply pointed out that the statements you made were factually incorrect. So because I pointed out the truth you have accused me of not being a true AMERICAN. Way to go. Anyway, I hope you realize the irony in your statement and also how ridiculously juvenile you sound.

btw - I put AMERICAN in caps to poke fun at your shouting via email. That's not a Christian thing to do. Jesus teaches kindness and forgiveness. Shame on you.

btw2 - Perhaps you can enlighten us all as to how many exclamation points one should include if they're really really totally like unbelievably pissed off and want to make sure the other person understands their point. Is it four? Five? Or should we just assume three, as employed by you, is the maximum limit.
Posted by breaker11 9 years ago
breaker11
spinaltap-
Well here is a statement that is factually correct... The pilgrims who sailed from England to America were Protestants (which is form of Christianity!!). These are the people that founded this country!!! This is a nation under GOD!
You can deny the facts all you want but this is the truth! And if you disagree with it so strongly than you are not a true AMERICAN!
Posted by spinaltap 9 years ago
spinaltap
Breaker11...your statements are not factually correct.

The Pledge of allegiance was written for the popular kid's magazine Youth's Companion by Christian Socialist author and Baptist minister Francis Bellamy on September 7, 1892.

In God We Trust was placed on our currency (coins first) during the civil war....1860s. It became the official U.S. national motto after the passage of an Act of Congress in 1956.

Ahem.
Posted by breaker11 9 years ago
breaker11
For those of you who don't believe that this nation was founded under Christianity, than u are just refusing to see the truth for example
The Pledge Of Allegiance:
".............One Nation UNDER GOD............................"
Our national motto:
"In GOD we TRUST"

Well i believe thats all the proof needed..
Posted by impactyourworld89 9 years ago
impactyourworld89
<This nation was not founded with a Christian appeal. Jefferson, did not believe in Jesus Christ. Neither did Washington, Madison, or Franklin> Are you serious??? Washington was a man of prayer and prayed diligently during the revolution. George Washington was the man to initiate the phrase "So Help me God" during innaugeration.
"It is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favors." George Washington
Jefferson was probably the least religious of the bunch but even he recognized their dependence on God." 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"
On to Franklin, " God governs in the affairs of man. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid? We have been assured in the Sacred Writings that except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it. I firmly believe this. I also believe that, without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel"
""In the beginning of the contest with Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for Divine protection. Our prayers, Sir, were heard, and they were graciously answered… do we imagine we no longer need His assistance?"
Ok, I'll give you Madison, but he is definitely in the vast minority. I could give you quotes from several other founding fathers showing their faith, or at the very least, their dependence on God
Posted by mindjob 9 years ago
mindjob
I think it is safe to say that those who advocate for more religion in the public sphere are the same people who otherwise advocate for less government intervention in our lives. So it's a bit hypocritical to want the government to have a hand in instilling religious values on its population. I would like to redirect RMK to one of his own quotes.

If there is anything in my thoughts or style to commend, the credit is due to my parents for instilling in me an early love of the Scriptures. --Daniel Webster

Notice how Webster was thanking his parents, not the government. That is because it is the responsibility of the parents, not the government, to instill whatever religious ideologies they want in their children, and it is the responsibility of the children to decide for themselves whether to believe it.

The stats RMK mentions have spurious relationships at best to the removal of prayer and the commandments from schools. For one, I doubt RMK has adjusted for population increase since then. Also, increases that are present even after accounting for population increase are due to other reasons, such as more divorces being due to the womens' liberation movement allowing women to finally extricate themselves from bad marriages. Increases in teen pregnancy are due much more to a lack of sex education and insistence on abstinence-only sex ed. So it doesn't make any sense to blame a lack of god on the problem when turning to "god solutions" are the cause of the problem.

Keeping religion and government separate are the best solutions to both sides. Why, if mixing the two is so preferable, would Alexis de Tocqueville point out that it is precisely this separation that is responsible for christianity's vibrancy in early 1800's America, while the mixing of the two killed the religion in Europe? For the love of god, keep church and state totally separate!
Posted by TeaandScarves 9 years ago
TeaandScarves
Both sides seem to have good points but are not stating them as well as I would have liked to seen. In response to spencetheguy (and ultimately this whole debate), there is a difference between morals or religion and JUST Christianity. Yes, the bible has good values, but so do other religions. The values aren't even really the problem, however. We all know to treat others kindly: every religion has a form of that golden rule. The problem is when religions disagree as to what values matter or even ARE and then try to impose their values on others. Government should PROMOTE loving thy neighbor and treating others as you want to be treated (yes, including gays)and other values that support HUMANITY. They should NOT, however, force people to live by every word that one holy book teaches. Would forcing people here to live by Christianity be any different than forcing people in Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries to live by Islamic teachings? That is why separation of church and state is so important and no one proved that religious values could be relevant without being imposing better than JFK I think (and Obama perhaps could do the same). Sure abortions do not support Christian values, but what happens when a non-Christian woman wants to have an abortion? Should she be forced to follow a religion she does not believe in?

As a side thought, whether or not this nation started as a Christian nation, I find that a little irrelevant. So many things have been changed since then, which has been made possible by the constitution, that change in specific religious views should be no different.

In conclusion, the VALUES that ANY religion teaches of being good to others and yourself are great for people, but no ONE religion should be imposed because it makes others follow rules they do not believe in and doesn't really affect anyone else.
Posted by spencetheguy 9 years ago
spencetheguy
our constitution was written under the assumption that the people are a moral and religious people. that is what was wrong with england. religion is what founded our nation.
18 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by U.n 1 year ago
U.n
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Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture.
Vote Placed by Devonal 4 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Absolutely we should keep far away from religion, it only steers us away from the truth.
Vote Placed by hark 9 years ago
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