I'm a bit disappointed that you did not take any calls relevant to the topic at hand on today's show, Christian Nation. While I enjoyed the opening commentary, there's quite a bit of background that Don left out. WHY aren't we a Christian nation? It isn't because the founders were deists, it is because they were pragmatists.
At the time the first colonists arrived in America, Europe was experiencing its most devastating war ever, the Thirty Years War. Upwards of 11 million people died; a figure that would not be eclipsed until the 20th century. The people who came to the New World were not seeking religious freedom from Muslims, Norse pagans, atheists, or Buddhists. They came to seek freedom from OTHER CHRISTIANS.
Religious violence and persecution was still in effect here even up to the signing of the Bill of Rights (and long after, with regard to Mormons, Catholics, JWs, and other minor sects). To the contemporary Christians, the idea that "Christian is good enough so let's be a Christian nation" is laughably absurd. Our founders knew that the religious liberty they enshrined in the Constitution would allow Anglicans in Massachusetts, Baptists in the Carolinas, Quakers in Pennsylvania, and Catholics in Maryland to get along and form a more perfect union. They remembered what had happened in Europe over the previous two centuries and why people had come here in the first place. The only way to make this union work was not merely to limit sectarian dogma from taking over policy, but to remove religion from the state entirely.
Ironically, it is the very first amendment protections that make this modern canard of a "Christian Nation" even possible. Two centuries of a wall separation, enforced by the first amendment and article VI, is exactly what allows Christians to get along with other Christians of different sects without resorting to violence. Unfortunately, it also invites many of them to come together and believe in the nonsense that David Barton peddles.
Thank you for your comments. We don't cull callers based on the subject of their call. Had we had any callers on the Christian Nation topic, I'm sure they would have gotten through.
There's certainly a lot to say about religion and the founding of the US. With our shorter air time, the presentation time has to be likewise shortened. I took the angle of showing how the Christian Nation mythology was supported by lies and deception.
You've raised some great points. I wish you had called in to air them.
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The ACA Lecture Series continues Sunday, February 4th, 12:15pm at the Austin History Center, 9th and Guadaupe. Chase Hunter will speak on "Inside Scientology 2: the Sea Org". The lecture is free and open to the public. The building opens at noon.