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PostPosted: Sat October 10th, 2009, 00:25 GMT 

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Over the hill wrote:
Dylan hasn't offended me at all. Your bigotry and insistence on posting in spite of your lack of intellectual abilities and logical thought processes does offend me.


Ah right, I see. Well, at least my "lack of intellectual abilities" has kept me from name-calling, which is a small mercy, no? "Bigotry" is a big term, by the way. And it's absent from this thread, except in your posts, which are bordering on hysteria, by now.

Why don't you just admit that Bob's a Jew who believes in Jesus too, and get on with it? You'll be happier if you do, trust me...


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PostPosted: Sat October 10th, 2009, 00:32 GMT 

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I'm Stark Naked wrote:
Over the hill wrote:
Dylan hasn't offended me at all. Your bigotry and insistence on posting in spite of your lack of intellectual abilities and logical thought processes does offend me.


Ah right, I see. Well, at least my "lack of intellectual abilities" has kept me from name-calling, which is a small mercy, no? "Bigotry" is a big term, by the way. And it's absent from this thread, except in your posts, which are bordering on hysteria, by now.

Why don't you just admit that Bob's a Jew who believes in Jesus too, and get on with it? You'll be happier if you do, trust me...


hysterical? why because I have the guts to stand up to your bias and refusal to look at things logically? you've proven your capacity to argue facts and so there's nothing left to discuss. Besides, it's almost Shabbat and I'm off to celebrate Simchat Torah!


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PostPosted: Sat October 10th, 2009, 01:21 GMT 

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Woody wrote:
Here's the thing with me and the religious thing. This is the flat-out truth: I find the religiosity and philosophy in the music. I don't find it anywhere else. Songs like "Let Me Rest on a Peaceful Mountain" or "I Saw the Light"—that's my religion. I don't adhere to rabbis, preachers, evangelists, all of that. I've learned more from the songs than I've learned from any of this kind of entity. The songs are my lexicon. I believe the songs.

- Bob Dylan, 1997


I wandered so aimless, life filled with sin;
I wouldn't ask my dear Saviour in.
Then Jesus came like a stranger in the night;
Praise the Lord, I saw the light!

Chorus
I saw the light, I saw the light.
No more darkness; no more night.
Now I'm so happy no sorrow in sight.
Praise the Lord, I saw the light!

Just like a blind man I wandered alone,
Worries and fears I claimed for my own.
Then like the blind man that Jesus gave back his sight;
Praise the Lord, I saw the light!

Chorus
I saw the light, I saw the light.
No more darkness; no more night.
Now I'm so happy no sorrow in sight.
Praise the Lord, I saw the light!

I was a fool to wander astray,
For straight is the gate and narrow is the way.
Now I have traded the wrong for the right;
Praise the Lord, I saw the light!

Chorus
I saw the light, I saw the light.
No more darkness; no more night.
Now I'm so happy no sorrow in sight.
Praise the Lord, I saw the light!


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PostPosted: Sat October 10th, 2009, 08:02 GMT 

Joined: Mon March 16th, 2009, 10:46 GMT
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the whole discussion makes me realise again, that dylan
doesn't dance to the pipes of either or any faith community,
and has withstood considerable social pressure over the years.
yet he chooses to speak out on his own terms, periodically.
he might have lost his physical voice, but has retained his
artistic voice.
i just like the guy's style. he won't be owned or pigeonholed


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PostPosted: Sat October 10th, 2009, 08:04 GMT 
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God's a jerk


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PostPosted: Sat October 10th, 2009, 09:09 GMT 

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Quote:
hysterical? why because I have the guts to stand up to your bias and refusal to look at things logically?


Yeah, it takes real guts to call strangers names on a website. Well done, you outrageous toughie! :D

Quote:
you've proven your capacity to argue facts and so there's nothing left to discuss.


Exactly, the facts are what they are and it's good you accept that. :wink:

Quote:
Besides, it's almost Shabbat and I'm off to celebrate Simchat Torah!


Good for you. It's 10.07 here, I might just catch the 11am mass in town. Hope I don't bump into Bob again. He tends to hunker down in the pew mumbling some Latin prayers. Distracts me from my gawking at women. :lol:

God bless ya - pax!


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PostPosted: Sat October 10th, 2009, 13:49 GMT 
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Peace be with you

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PostPosted: Sun October 11th, 2009, 12:27 GMT 
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Mr. Tambourine Man wrote:
People still relate Christmas songs to Christianity? I think it's more traditional rather than religious nowadays. I'm atheist and every atheist I know celebrates Christmas. Maybe it's generational.


I agree.
For example: Santa Claus, Papá Noel, is not a traditional Christian figure for me, not in Spain. When I was a kid we did not know him at all, that was some kind of American tradition and we only waited for the Three kings bringing presents the 6th of January. Today Christmas is like a show, a capitalist party ruled by marketing, you know, buy, buy, buy... For me it is just a holiday time to enjoy with food, music and presents with family, but you always have that time to remember your childhood feelings about helping the others, love and peace.


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PostPosted: Sun October 11th, 2009, 15:49 GMT 
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Shakespeare_in_the_alley wrote:
I've always felt a special connection to Bob as we shared Jewish origins. Bob's Gospel period has always been troubling to me, but he's grown long beyond it, so WTF.


I've always shared a special connection with bob because we are both white men


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 15:41 GMT 

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There are a number of issues here but let's get to the heart of the matter. It's almost unbelievable to me how some Jews react to Christmas in the United States, a holiday which is both secular and religious and which has become an essential part of the fabric of the country. I say some Jews because there are Jews who are astounded by the reactions of their brothers and sisters. The U.S. was founded by Christians (whether practicing or fallen). Religious freedom means toleration of other views (Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, etc.) but the ideals of the U.S. are based in large part in the morality taught by the Chrisitan Bible and Christmas is the most important holiday in this faith. As such, it is not surprising that it is celebrated with vim and vigor.

Luckily for us all, as crass as it has been made by the market, Christmas still brings lots of charities lots of money along with a boost to the economy, and other tangential benefits. Any way you look at it, it's a good thing.

If you really are that offended by Christmas and you wish to live in a society that celebrates the holidays of another faith and does not hold up Christianity above other faiths, there are other countries in the Middle East and in Asia where you will not be harassed and hounded by people wishing you happiness and good cheer. Otherwise, take a step back and another look and you'll find it'll be hard to see what's wrong with a holiday that celebrates giving and generosity.

By the way, would anyone have a problem with me (a fallen Christian) remarking that although I love Bob, his Jewishness has always been troubling to me?


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 16:15 GMT 

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Really? You're upset that Bob Dylan did a Christmas album because you are Jewish?

Not only is that pathetic and parochial, but it is downright ethnocentric.

The last time I checked, this album wasn't recorded with your state tax money.


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 16:21 GMT 
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Quote:
There are a number of issues here but let's get to the heart of the matter. It's almost unbelievable to me how some Jews react to Christmas in the United States, a holiday which is both secular and religious and which has become an essential part of the fabric of the country. I say some Jews because there are Jews who are astounded by the reactions of their brothers and sisters. The U.S. was founded by Christians (whether practicing or fallen). Religious freedom means toleration of other views (Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, etc.) but the ideals of the U.S. are based in large part in the morality taught by the Chrisitan Bible and Christmas is the most important holiday in this faith. As such, it is not surprising that it is celebrated with vim and vigor.

Luckily for us all, as crass as it has been made by the market, Christmas still brings lots of charities lots of money along with a boost to the economy, and other tangential benefits. Any way you look at it, it's a good thing.

If you really are that offended by Christmas and you wish to live in a society that celebrates the holidays of another faith and does not hold up Christianity above other faiths, there are other countries in the Middle East and in Asia where you will not be harassed and hounded by people wishing you happiness and good cheer. Otherwise, take a step back and another look and you'll find it'll be hard to see what's wrong with a holiday that celebrates giving and generosity.

By the way, would anyone have a problem with me (a fallen Christian) remarking that although I love Bob, his Jewishness has always been troubling to me?


That is such total bullshit.

If the people who founded this country wanted to emphasize Christian values, etc. I would expect to find some mention of Jesus Christ (a prominent figure in the religion I am told) somewhere in the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

But no. In fact, historians tell us that actual references in earlier drafts were expunged.

Whatever Christianity was a thousand years ago is unrecognizable to the mutant twisted mass of sexual repression and sadism it is today.

Your argument is offensive on more levels than I can count. What your saying is NO different from people in the 50s and 60s who said that the US was founded by white people and if you don't like the "white only" drinking fountains and the laws against inter racial marriage you can damn well go live somewhere else.

But know what, Bubba? The other option was to stay here and work to change the country into one that people like you feel increasingly uncomfortable in.

You might like Romania.


Last edited by Long Johnny on Tue October 13th, 2009, 16:22 GMT, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 16:21 GMT 
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I can see where some Jewish people get overwhelmed by Christmas. Heck, I'm a disgruntled Catholic and I get overwhelmed. It's driven by the retail industry & the Almighty Dollar, not any particular religion. The stores start putting out holiday decorations by Halloween and TV ads start to run holiday ads at that time, too. Christmas is shoved down everyone's throats. I'd be very surprised if Christmas didn't feel alienating to Jewish people.

I'm inclined to think that Bob is a very spiritual man but I believe he is Jewish in both practice and by his heritage. Who knows why he decided to do a holiday album? I wasn't too thrilled about it when it was announced. They mostly tend to be cheesy. I'm sure the critics will have a field day with it. But, it's his decision whether we like it or not. One small consolation is that the money will be going to a good cause. I'm happy about that.


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 16:59 GMT 
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I am so thankful to God for directing me to this thread. Its taught me so much about religious and cultural tolerance. :lol:


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:07 GMT 
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Long Johnny wrote:
If the people who founded this country wanted to emphasize Christian values, etc. I would expect to find some mention of Jesus Christ (a prominent figure in the religion I am told) somewhere in the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Yes, because phrases such as One nation under God and In God We Trust are so vague. And lest you try the "Yeah but they don't mention Jesus directly" argument: How did the founding fathers decide to make you promise to defend the country if sworn into office? Or promise to tell the truth in a court of law? They make you swear on the Bible, and I've not heard of many cases where those Bibles include only one testament.


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:13 GMT 
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Woody wrote:
Long Johnny wrote:
If the people who founded this country wanted to emphasize Christian values, etc. I would expect to find some mention of Jesus Christ (a prominent figure in the religion I am told) somewhere in the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Yes, because phrases such as One nation under God and In God We Trust are so vague. And lest you try the "Yeah but they don't mention Jesus directly" argument: How did the founding fathers decide to make you promise to defend the country if sworn into office? Or promise to tell the truth in a court of law? They make you swear on the Bible, and I've not heard of many cases where those Bibles include only one testament.


Hey you. Yeah you!!! You've already been told to go to Romania. So zip it! :?


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:25 GMT 
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Isa wrote:
Peace be with you

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Hey, that was my avatar about a year ago!


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:25 GMT 
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Woody wrote:
Long Johnny wrote:
If the people who founded this country wanted to emphasize Christian values, etc. I would expect to find some mention of Jesus Christ (a prominent figure in the religion I am told) somewhere in the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Yes, because phrases such as One nation under God and In God We Trust are so vague. And lest you try the "Yeah but they don't mention Jesus directly" argument: How did the founding fathers decide to make you promise to defend the country if sworn into office? Or promise to tell the truth in a court of law? They make you swear on the Bible, and I've not heard of many cases where those Bibles include only one testament.


Well... good question. Here's an answer:

When Presidents and other federal officials take their oaths of office, they often place their hand on a Bible and conclude their oaths with the words "so help me God." Some accommodationists see these practices as evidence that the founders never intended separation of church and state. But this conclusion doesn't follow: the Constitution doesn't require Presidents or other federal officials to place their hand on the Bible or say the words "so help me God." Quite the contrary, those sections of the Constitution that deal with oaths of office are completely secular in content and, as such, constitute evidence that the framers intended separation.

The Presidential oath of office is described in Article II, section 1 of the Constitution:

Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:--"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Nothing in this section requires that the oath of office be taken on the Bible. Neither do the words "so help me God" appear in the oath. While Presidents often include this phrase in their inauguration ceremonies, the words are customary; they are not required by the Constitution and have no legal significance.

Additionally, we note that the words required by the Constitution are described as an "Oath or Affirmation," and that the President is allowed to simply affirm his faithfulness to the Constitution. The word "affirmation" was inserted in this section precisely to allow Presidents to avoid swearing oaths to God as a condition of taking office. This provision seems particularly intended for Quakers (who had religious objections to taking oaths), but it is worded broadly enough to encompass any person who objects to taking an oath, including non-theists.

At the time of the Constitution several states allowed Quakers to escape taking an oath as a condition of assuming elected office. The 1780 Constitution of the state of Massachusetts, for example, provided that:

when any person shall be of the denomination called Quakers, and shall decline taking said oath, he shall make his affirmation in the foregoing form, omitting the words "swear" and inserting, instead thereof, the word "affirm," and omitting the words "So help me God," and subjoining, instead thereof, the words, "This I do under the pains and penalties of perjury."

Conversely, the 1776 Delaware and 1777 Vermont constitutions did not restrict affirmations to Quakers. Like the Federal Constitution, these states allowed any citizen otherwise qualified for public office to affirm loyalty to a state, if conscientiously scrupulous of taking an oath. Still, the federal Constitution went far beyond the practices of even these states by prohibiting religious tests for public office (see below).

Finally, we note that even the "oath" form of the words prescribed by Article II, section 1 is secular in content. Unlike the oaths required in some states, the federal Constitution does not specify to whom the President "swears." God is not mentioned; it is almost as if the framers purposely worded the oath to allow the President decide for himself who, if anything, is being sworn to.

Oathtaking is not rocket science. If the framers wanted Presidents to invoke God when taking the oath of office they could have worded the oath to accomplish that objective. Instead, the constitutional oath of office contains no reference to God, need not be administered on the Bible, and need not even be considered an oath. Contrary to the accommodationist argument, Article II, section 1 is evidence that the framers intended the federal government to be secular in its operation.

Oaths of office for other federal and state officials are described in Article VI of the Constitution:

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

Joseph Story, an early Justice of the Supreme Court and the author of the first detailed commentary on the United States Constitution, comments on the oath or affirmation clause of the Constitution as follows:

Oaths have a solemn obligation upon the minds of all reflecting men, and especially upon those who feel a deep sense of accountability to a Supreme being. If, in the ordinary administration of justice in cases of private rights, or personal claims, oaths are required of those, who try, as well as of those, who give testimony, to guard against malice, falsehood, and evasion, surely like guards ought to be to be interposed in the administration of high public trusts, and especially in such, as may concern the welfare and safety of the whole community. But there are know denominations of men, who are conscientiously scrupulous of taking oaths (among which is that pure and distinguished sect of Christians, commonly called Friends, or Quakers,) and therefore, to prevent any unjustifiable exclusion from office, the constitution has permitted a solemn affirmation to be made instead of an oath, and as its equivalent (Joseph Story, Commentaries on the Constitution, 1833, pp. 1838ff.).

In other words, the Constitution guarantees all federal and state officials the right to avoid taking oaths of office. Further, the Constitution guarantees that there will be no religious tests for federal office. In the words of Joseph Story, the effect of these provisions is to "cut off for ever every pretense of any alliance between church and state in the national government." Additionally, these clauses moved the Constitution well beyond contemporary state constitutions in terms of their provisions for religious freedom.

Presidents and other federal officials may swear on the Bible and say the words "so help me God," but this does not make the Constitution any less secular. The Constitution requires nothing of federal officers in the way of religion. The framers saw no need to refer to God in the oath of office, and explicitly provided an alternative to the oath that guaranteed secularity.

[it didn't say "In God we trust" on the currency until the 1950s!]


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:37 GMT 
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What students would learn in American schools above all is the religion of Jesus Christ.
- George Washington

We Recognize No Sovereign but God, and no King but Jesus!
- John Adams and John Hancock

[July 4th] ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.
- John Adams

Why is it that, next to the birthday of the Savior of the world, your most joyous and most venerated festival returns on this day [the Fourth of July]? Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the Gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer's mission upon earth? That it laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity?
- John Quincy Adams

It cannot be emphasized too clearly and too often that this nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religion, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ. For this very reason, peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here.
- Patrick Henry


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:40 GMT 

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Careful Woody, you may offend him!


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:41 GMT 
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And what if a new president of the USA doesn't say "One nation under God" and "In God We Trust"? Do you think people will accept that without criticism? Maybe it would be a polemical way to start a presidency so every new president tries to avoid that.


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:47 GMT 
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Isa wrote:
Maybe it would be a polemical way to start a presidency so every new president tries to avoid that.

Isa, it is more likely the case because there has never been a US president who was not a practicing Christian at some point in his life.


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:48 GMT 
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LJ, you're the voice of reason in a pre-Enlightenment wilderness here. The American constitution, like so many things that make life in Western democracies more pleasant than in most other places in space and time, was born out of the spirit of the Enlightenment, which was fought tooth and nail by the Christian churches, who would have preferred people to stay disinformed, frightened and malleable as in the Middle Ages.
The way Christians have the nerve to claim that Western democracy was their invention is simply unbelievable. The emancipation of the European Jews was an important part in the Enlightenment, and so it is pretty distressing to see how Jews voicing their uneasiness with the cultural dominance of Christianity are ridiculed and attacked in this thread. Their uneasiness is perfectly understandable, because for the last 2000 years Christian hegemony has always been synonymous with anti-semitic societies.
So, for the record: Historically, you bleeding Christians are the ENEMIES OF DEMOCRACY AND HUMANITY, NOT THE INVENTORS!!!


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:49 GMT 
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Folk & Blues Fan wrote:
Historically, you bleeding Christians are the ENEMIES OF DEMOCRACY AND HUMANITY, NOT THE INVENTORS!!!

F&B Fan, how do you reconcile this assertion with the founding fathers' quotations I listed above?


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PostPosted: Tue October 13th, 2009, 17:51 GMT 
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1st Amendment to Constitution in Bill of Rights:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free
exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.


This is a far cry from saying the U.S. is not a nation with a particular set of religious roots. All this does is say that the federal government must "butt out" of any disputes. In regards to oath taking, legally, politicians are not required. However, the vast majority of them do; again underlining a cultural fact about their political base---the vast majority are of a religious persuasion.

The roots of Western Civilization are Judeo-Christian. The U.S. is no exception, no matter what the flavor of the week has been since the 1960s. And yet, Muslims, Hindus, Buddists, and athiests, are all welcome to be here too. Because we are a tolerant nation, as encoded in our Constitution and in the hearts of most of our people. Yes, we make mistakes, but we always endeavor to correct them.

What's wrong with Romania?


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