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Deist Principles
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Texas Educators Want To Brainwash Our Children

By James Donahue

The Texas Board of Education has approved revisions in public school textbooks that appear designed to add even more distortion to the history of the United States that already exists. And among the very worst ideas is that the nation was founded on Christian principles. Any true historian knows that is an extreme distortion of the facts.

Children reading from these new books, which could be distributed all over the country, will be taught that the concept of “separation of church and state” is not in the Constitution.

While the exact words and that phrase are not to be found in the Constitution, the men who wrote this magnificent document, and the First Amendment attached to it, clearly believed that the church has no business getting involved in the government of the people. They believed in freedom of religion, but they also believed that religion and politics needed to be two separate things if this new nation was to survive.

They were the descendants of people who fled to America to escape the tyranny of living under monarchies controlled and influenced by the church. In fact many of the men who wrote and framed the Constitution were deists.

Thomas Paine, for example, tears Christianity into shreds in his book, The Age of Reason. In it, he points to all of the evils committed in the name of religion and argued that religious morality was flawed and sometimes incoherent.

Thomas Jefferson also might have been classified as a deist. While he believed in a Creator, and approved the moral philosophy taught by Jesus in the Bible, Jefferson rejected the Biblical superstition and mysticism found in the church. He published his own version of the scriptures, known as The Jefferson Bible, in which he removed all of the miracles and mysticism in the Jesus story.

Benjamin Franklin wrote that while he supported the morals of the Christian religion he said “I have, with most of the present dissenters in England, some doubts as to his (Jesus’) divinity.”

While many of the men that wrote and framed the Constitution questioned Christianity, they were seriously concerned about protecting the rights of colonists to be free to worship whatever religion they chose without interference from other religious groups and government. This was why the right to freedom of religion is included along with other fundamental rights that include freedom of speech and freedom of the press in the First Amendment.

That Amendment reads: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” The prohibition of government from legally “respecting” or forcing the establishment of any religion on the nation’s people is carefully worded. It does not include the phrase “Separation of Church and State,” it doesn’t say “Freedom of religion” either. Yet that is so embedded in our democratic system that no court in the land has ever ruled otherwise.

Jefferson’s own interpretation of the First Amendment, in an 1802 letter to the Committee of the Danbury Baptist Association, called it a “wall of separation between church and state.”

James Madison, our Fourth President and the “Father of the Constitution,” wrote once that “Strongly guarded . . . is the separation between religion and government in the Constitution of the United States.”

Madison also wrote: “Religious bondage shackles and debilitates the mind and unfits it for every noble enterprise. During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been the fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.”

John Adams, who succeeded Washington to become the second U.S. President, once wrote: “This would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it!”

It was said George Washington attended church, as most American presidents feel compelled to do, but he never declared himself a Christian in any of his writings. He always championed the cause of freedom from religious intolerance and compulsion.

Ethan Allen, who once stopped the minister in the midst of his own wedding because he objected to a reference to “God,” wrote that he believed the “that Jesus Christ was not God is evidence from his own words.” Allen also wrote that he was generally “denominated a Deist, the reality of which I never disputed, having conscious that I am no Christian.”

This is but one of the inaccuracies slipped into the American historical record as the right-wing Texas Republicans would have our children believe. If Texas boards of education choose to poison the minds of their children with misinformation there is little we can do about that. But we highly recommend that the educators elsewhere in the nation choose another source for their school text books.

It would be best for our children to learn from old, frayed and worn books than accept books filled with snakes.