Mr. Bushaw [letter to the editor on Dec. 29] is trying to prove a myth. There is no “separation of church and state” in the Constitution.
Freedom of religion means you are allowed to practice your religious beliefs without government interference. That is also the real meaning in the Treaty of Tripoli of 1797.
If Mr. Bushaw did some research, as he advises, he would also learn that the 1797 treaty was superseded, in 1805, by another “Treaty of Peace and Amity” in which the religious clause was left out, so as to end that debate.
Mr. Bushaw claims that our founders were all deists, and then names about three out of 204 major founders. Of these 204 individuals, they all signed one or more of the following: Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution. Some attended the Constitutional Convention of 1787.
Following is the religious affiliation of some of these 204 individuals:
Episcopalian/Anglican – 88 (54.7 percent)
Presbyterian – 30 (18.6 percent)
Congregationalist – 27 (16.8 percent)
Quaker – 7 (4.3 percent)
Dutch Reformed/German Reformed – 6 (3.7 percent)
Lutheran – 5 (3.1 percent)
Catholic – 3 (1.9 percent)
Huguenot – 3 (1.9 percent)
Unitarian – 3 (1.9 percent)
Methodist – 2 (1.2 percent)
Calvinist – 1 (0.6 percent)
In an 1816 letter to Charles Thomson, Thomas Jefferson writes, “I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus, ...” etc. And Jefferson advocated that the Bible, and Wells’ ”Hymns and Psalms,” should be required reading in the public schools.
The public square had always been used for public discourse by the citizenry, no matter what their religion, be it Christian, atheist, or lying politicians.
“He who spits against the wind, spits in his own face.”
Note to readers – In the statistics above, some people were counted more than once because they changed religious affiliation from one denomination to another. Thus, individual amounts added together total more than 100 percent.