by Bookworm | September 13, 2008 11:42 pm
I caught a minute of Sean Hannity as I was driving home the other day. He played and read for his audience numerous quotations from past American presidents (as well as Benjamin Franklin), each of whom acknowledged a beneficent Judeo-Christian God from whom our liberties flow. I’ve assembled my own collection of such quotations, all from Presidents deeply revered by the Progressives:
As Hannity rightly observed during his show, nothing Palin has said in public life is more extreme than anything these Presidents said in the past. Each was a religious man, whether hewing to a strict denomination or, as seems to be the case with Jefferson and Madison, being a non-denominational deist. Each understood that the separation of church and state does not mean that, in order to participate in American political life, people must be without faith. Instead, each understood, as Madison and Jefferson both explicitly stated, that Americans were free to be religious and, indeed, would benefit greatly from religion.
The Founders were not anti-religion. Instead, they were against government-sponsored religion. They had been raised in a world in which the state had an official religion. The government dictated religious doctrine — and, because the State was loath to cede control, it made sure that all positions of power, whether in education or the government, were limited to those who embraced this state controlled religion. It was this intermingling of church and state against which the Founders rebelled. They never rebelled against God.
And as the quotations above show, past American presidents have fully understood that entering the White House did not require them to check their faith at the door. The Constitution did ensure, however, that their faith was their own guide and comfort and not something that they could impose upon the American people. Sarah Palin’s governance in Alaska shows that she understands this distinction as well.
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