Robertson: Islamists, Atheists Pushing Church/State Separation

It’s Pat Robertson’s turn to play a game of Wingnut Madlibs, throwing everyone he disagrees with into one incoherent paragraph in which he claims, “This nonsense about separation of church and state has gotten way, way beyond the bounds of what the Founders of our Constitution thought. We’re under assault by militant Islamists, militant atheists, secularists, those who want to destroy all of the fabric of faith in our society.”

Hmmm. We’ve certainly gone beyond the bounds of the religion clauses of the First Amendment according to James Madison, but not in the way that Robertson imagines. Madison argued that congressional and military chaplaincies violated the Establishment Clause, as did any declaration of prayer or thanksgiving, no matter how broadly worded or advisory it might be. Thomas Jefferson agreed with the last part, though he did not weigh in on the question of chaplaincies.

Other founders disagreed, of course, which is why merely invoking “the founders” as a group is a bit silly. It’s not as if they agreed on how to interpret the Constitution, especially the religion clauses. But for the Christian right, every founder was exactly like them.

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  • Alverant

    So he’s saying that islamists want to implement shaira law by keeping government and religion separate?

  • roggg

    I get the argument that atheists are pushing separation of church and state. But Islamists? I thought the extreme right viewed Islam as being so inextricably tied to state that it’s a political ideology not a religion. Since when did radical Islamists start arguing for more secularism?

  • D Carter

    Um, Pat, militant islamists want to separate religion and law? Hello? Hello? Anyone there?

  • Chiroptera

    Other founders disagreed, of course, which is why merely invoking “the founders” as a group is a bit silly.

    Also, if we were somehow able to ask them their opinions on interpreting the Consitution, I think most of them would reply, “Why do you care?”

  • dogmeat

    Ahhhh yes, scary word salad. One wonders if he is cynically throwing them together to get the rubes to contribute, or if he’s so far gone he really believes that militant Islamists and militant Atheists work together…

    Ed, as you know, the founding fathers were all Atheists. ;o)

  • eric

    We’re under assault by militant Islamists, militant atheists, secularists, those who want to destroy all of the fabric of faith in our society.”

    If the fabric of your faith requires government support for your faith and no others, just to remain intact, its pretty much on its last legs.

  • Randomfactor

    He’s right on both counts. Obviously atheists want separation of church and state. So do Islamists, who don’t want the government weighing in against them on zoning, As eric noted, the Christianists want the government to regulate others’ religions.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    People, please! Do I have to point out the obvious? Militant Muslins want to expand the so-called “Separation of Church and State”, weakening the Church and the State so that they can move in with their own Muslin Church and Muslin State!

     

    eric “If the fabric of your faith requires government support for your faith and no others, just to remain intact, its pretty much on its last legs.”

    Wrong! It’s not the Church that needs the support of the State, it’s the State that needs the support of the Church! Who is strong enough to hold the fifty stars on the Flag other than The Lord?

  • Michael Heath

    Pat Robertson states:

    “This nonsense about separation of church and state has gotten way, way beyond the bounds of what the Founders of our Constitution thought. We’re under assault by militant Islamists, militant atheists, secularists, those who want to destroy all of the fabric of faith in our society.”

    Mr. Robertson’s effectively arguing that Christianity is too weak to exist without the power of the state to defend and promote the faith. In the long-run, I agree.

  • Michael Heath

    Chiroptera writes:

    . . . if we were somehow able to ask [the founders] their opinions on interpreting the Consitution, I think most of them would reply, “Why do you care?”

    Perhaps, but James Madison became a constructionist during Washington’s tenure as president given the progressivism practiced in that time, especially by his once close ally Alexander Hamilton who served as Sec. of the Treasury.

    I think it’s critical for us to understand the original meaning and original intent of that which was passed during this era. Even J. John Paul Stevens relied on originalism in his rulings.

    Too many liberals see conservatives popularizing originalism and think originalism gives conservatives a political advantage. I don’t think that all. Instead conservatives use originalism the same way they use creationism, global warming denialism, and Christian Nation revisionism. Let’s not forget the U.S. Constitution was and remains radically liberal, at least radical for conservatives; where the Constitution is also the chief enabler for progressives to establish policies in all three branches and the states.

  • sigurd jorsalfar

    I was going to post something funny in this thread about the separation of Church and State but then I saw that Pat Robertson beat me to it.

  • D. C. Sessions

    But for the Christian right, every founder was exactly like them.

    Of course. After all, God is — and the Constitution was revealed directly to the Founders from God.

  • Matrim

    “This nonsense about separation of church and state has gotten way, way beyond the bounds of what the Founders of our Constitution thought.”

    Nonsense, eh? Pattie-boy is a Baptist, I wonder how his opinion of church-state separation might differ if he were around in the Colonial Period. Far as I know, the Puritans didn’t take too kindly to Baptists, and their religion was outlawed in many places until they established this “nonsense” he’s deriding.