More Dishonest History from David Lane

David Lane, the powerful Christian right presidential kingmaker, is once again doing his best impersonation of David Barton, spreading lies about American history to “prove” that Christianity was once “the official religion of America” until that damn Supreme Court ruled otherwise.

Did you realize that America’s Founders established Christianity as the official religion of America in the 13 Original state Constitutions?

http://www.wnd.com/2013/11/was-america-once-a-christian-nation/

Then suddenly, following three and half centuries of meteoric rise and cultural distinction, a secular U.S. Supreme Court in 1963 pronounced that the Bible would no longer be the fixed point in which to structure and judge community.

This is the typical trick of Christian historical revisionists of talking not about the U.S. Constitution and what it says but going back to colonial and state constitutions passed earlier. Yes, all of the colonies and most of the early states had official religions (not just Christian, but specific denominations even), but the U.S. Constitution explicitly forbids that at a federal level and it led to the disestablishment of all those state churches. One by one those states repealed their church establishments over the next few decades after the Constitution was passed, the last one being Massachusetts in 1833.

Early America grasped that liberty and freedom depend upon virtue, and virtue depends upon Christianity; this knowledge was considered elementary. Yet eight vainglorious Justices invented, from scratch, an alternative religious system establishing a phony secular morality.

The 8-1 decision to remove the Bible from public school impelled lone dissenter Justice Potter Stewart to admonish, “It led not to true neutrality with respect to religion, but to the establishment of a religion of secularism.” Justice Stewart recognized that, through the control of education, secularism would impose its views, values, politics, and laws on the people of the United States.

Potter Stewart was full of shit and so is Lane. The Supreme Court did not “remove the Bible from public school,” it said that the government could not force school children to read the Bible against their will. That is hardly the same thing. Remember, Lane is against “big government” and screams constantly about government “tyranny,” but what could be more blatantly tyrannical than forcing children to read a holy book that they don’t necessarily follow? Why does Christianity need the government to force it on children, can’t they be satisfied with teaching it to their own children at home and in their churches? No, they have to force it on other people’s children too. Because as always, when they say “religious freedom” they mean Christian hegemony.

Let’s be completely transparent and unclouded on God’s position on homosexuality:

“You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.” Leviticus 18:22

“If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.” Leviticus 20:13

So you want gay people put to death as God commands, Mr. Lane? Come on, don’t be shy. Tell us in plain language.

Egregious and scandalous is the Church’s submission to secularists, and the resignation of America’s Founder’s mission, “We do hereby Dedicate this Land, and ourselves, to reach the People within these shores with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and to raise up Godly generations after us, and with these generations take the Kingdom of God to all the earth.” **

Was that said by one of “America’s founders”? Nope. It was said by Robert Hunt, who helped establish the British colony at Jamestown a century and a half before America’s founding. Typical Christian right dishonesty.

About Ed Brayton

After spending several years touring the country as a stand up comedian, Ed Brayton tired of explaining his jokes to small groups of dazed illiterates and turned to writing as the most common outlet for the voices in his head. He has appeared on the Rachel Maddow Show and the Thom Hartmann Show, and is almost certain that he is the only person ever to make fun of Chuck Norris on C-SPAN.

  • Michael Heath

    David Lane states:

    Did you realize that America’s Founders established Christianity as the official religion of America in the 13 Original state Constitutions?

    I’d like to see Mr. Lane’s citation here.

    King Charles II granted a charter in 1663 to Rhode Island.

    In 1843, RI adopted a state constitution that supplanted whatever constitutionally remained of that charter (if anything). The 1843 constitution did not establish Christianity as the official religion. So what is Lane even referring to here?

  • dannorth

    The fine art of lying while telling the truth and letting your readers reaching the wrong conclusion that you (and they) want to reach.

  • Michael Heath

    dannorth writes:

    The fine art of lying while telling the truth and letting your readers reaching the wrong conclusion that you (and they) want to reach.

    Both Land and Barton have repeatedly outright lied; neither demonstrates your ‘fine art’.

  • carpenterman

    I love how these fundies keep insisting that America is a “Christian” nation, as if Christianity was a single, unified institution. Are the Catholics and Southern Baptists the same? Lutherans and Eastern Orthodox? Quakers and Mormons?

    A major reason the Constitution flatly states “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion” is the framers didn’t want someone else’s sect becoming the Official State Religion. Guys like Lane and Barton should ask themselves, “If the government did support a Christian church, why would it be mine?”

  • John Pieret

    You know, maybe my Google-foo is low this holiday weekend, but I haven’t been able to come up with an original citation to Potter Stewart’s supposed quote. Just a lot of secondary cites by pro-government-imposed prayer orgs. Anyone have an original cite?

  • macallan

    Did you realize that America’s Founders established Christianity as the official religion of America in the 13 Original state Constitutions?

    http://www.wnd.com/2013/11/was-america-once-a-christian-nation/

    Then suddenly, following three and half centuries of meteoric rise and cultural distinction, a secular U.S. Supreme Court in 1963 pronounced that the Bible would no longer be the fixed point in which to structure and judge community.

    (emphasis added)

    So, which one of the original 13 state constitutions existed in 1613?

  • http://www.twitter.com/jablair51 Ouabache

    “Religion of secularism” is still my all-time favorite oxymoron.

  • frankgturner

    @ dannorth #2

    You have defined “politics” perfectly. Of course prices like Lane don’t realize that with the internet politicians can be fact checked as we are on here. The Free Market of Ideas shines through. Too bad this wasn’t around at the founding of the USA.

  • dingojack

    John Pieret – Abington v. Schemp, Justice Steward noted:

    It is insisted that unless these religious exercises are permitted a “religion of secularism” is established in the schools. We agree of course that the State may not establish a “religion of secularism” in the sense of affirmatively opposing or showing hostility to religion, thus “preferring those who believe in no religion over those who do believe.” Zorach v. Clauson, supra, at 314. We do not agree, however, that this decision in any sense has that effect. In addition, it might well be said that one’s education is not complete without a study of comparative religion or the history of religion and its relationship to the advancement of civilization. It certainly may be said that the Bible is worthy of study for its literary and historic qualities. Nothing we have said here indicates that such study of the Bible or of religion, when presented objectively as part of a secular program of education, may not be effected consistently with the First Amendment. But the exercises here do not fall into those categories. They are religious exercises, required by the States in violation of the command of the First Amendment that the Government maintain strict neutrality, neither aiding nor opposing religion.”

    Para 225.

    Dingo

  • dingojack

    The same:

    It might also be argued that parents who want their children exposed to religious influences can adequately fulfill that wish off school property and outside school time. With all its surface persuasiveness, however, this argument seriously misconceives the basic constitutional justification for permitting the exercises at issue in these cases. For a compulsory state educational system so structures a child’s life that if religious exercises are held to be an impermissible activity in schools, religion is placed at an artificial and state-created disadvantage. Viewed in this light, permission of such exercises for those who want them is necessary if the schools are truly to be neutral in the matter of religion. And a refusal to permit religious exercises thus is seen, not as the realization of state neutrality, but rather as the establishment of a religion of secularism, or at the least, as government support of the beliefs of those who think that religious exercises should be conducted only in private.”

    Para 313.

    Dingo

  • frankgturner

    @Dingojack

    For a compulsory state educational system so structures a child’s life that if religious exercises are held to be an impermissible activity in schools, religion is placed at an artificial and state-created disadvantage. Viewed in this light, permission of such exercises for those who want them is necessary if the schools are truly to be neutral in the matter of religion

    .

    Yes I agree, if schools do not permit said exercises for those who desire them then they put religion at a selective disadvantage. Permitted is a key word. When said activity is led by school representatives, such as teachers or administrators and they scold children and require them to engage in said activity, that has gone beyond “permitting” said activity. Back in high school 20 years ago when I was on the football team we were informed that we could get together and recite what we wished in accordance with our own beliefs or nothing at all. The coaches and assistant coached bowed their heads and closed their eyes in accordance with what they did and plenty of small groups formed where some players did together. THAT was being “permitted” and not forced.

    .

    I think many conservatives don’t seem to get this. They think in such false dichotomies that it is either “everyone prays” or “no one prays” and nothing in between. On another board it was said that it is quite interesting, when Xtians want freedom to express their religion it seems to become oppressive Xtian hegemony instead of “permission.” Maybe some of those believers / followers need to grow up as an oppressed minority for real (rather than what they have convinced themselves that tehy are when they are anything but).

  • frankgturner

    Oh and pardon me for plugging my websights, but they are a great way to learn something new and there will be some good ads posting to go with them soon (and maybe a gofundme account if you like what you learn).

    http://www.lsned.info

    httos://lesoned.wordpress.com

  • frankgturner
  • http://www.rodlamkey.net reverendrodney

    David Lane speaks about the founding of AMERICA, not the colonies. America was founded in 1776. Three and a half centuries later would be the year 2126.

  • dingojack

    Did you realize that America’s Founders established Christianity as the official religion of America in the 13 Original state Constitutions? …

    Then suddenly, following three and half centuries of meteoric rise and cultural distinction, a secular U.S. Supreme Court in 1963 pronounced that the Bible would no longer be the fixed point in which to structure and judge community.”

    So clearly, Washington, Jefferson et al. hitched a ride in Obama’s Time Machine in 1776, travelled back to 1613 (three hundred and fifty years before 1963) founded America (the whole continent, presumably) and orchestrated ‘a meteoric rise and cultural distinction’ (measured how, exactly?) until one-by-one disestablishing state-endorsed religions by 1833 (a hundred and thirty years before 1963) under the rubric of the US Constitution, before travelling back to 1483 (three hundred and fifty years before) to found America (the whole continent, presumably) to allow for three hundred and fifty years of ‘meteoric rise and cultural distinction’ …

    Sounds like bad sci-fi, more than anything else.

    @@ Dingo

  • raven

    Let’s not forget the stunning achievements of American theocracy.

    1. The Puritans hung 25 alleged witches at Salem, Massachusetts. None of whom were actually…witches.

    2. Not content with murdering innocent people, they also killed a few heretics, aka other xians, Quakers and Unitarians. They also beat up, imprisoned, and ran out of town at various times, Baptists.

    3. Roger Williams founded Rhode Island on the basis of religious freedom to provide a refuge for people fleeing…the Puritans.

    4. They ended up so unpopular that they disappeared, morphing into the Congregationalists and Unitarians.

    David Lane and his cohort of vaguely humanoid toad fundie leaders are very determined to do it all over again. So far with the same result. The uglier they get, the more No Religions there are.

  • frankgturner

    @ reverendrodney #14

    You seemed to have missed the point here. Even permitting that at one point Xtianity in one form or another (multiple sects including potestantism, Catholicism, even some Jews given that these are all Abrahamic, during the founding of the United States OF America (as 2 continents, the Americas had already been named for over 200 years before 1776) the Amendments clearly stated that there was to be no endorsement of one religion over another. Despite the strong likelihood that there were probable agnostics and atheist (as I read it, a lot of the founding fathers sounded like exists) the founding fathers most likely thought that some form of Xtianity would prevail at least in the most immediate terms following the founding. The thing is, to be honest you take ALL factors into account, regardless of whether factors andvariables support your view or not. The linked article from end in 2013 is obviously cherry picked to make it appear that despite Amendment principle that seemed to point against it, certain States were giving official support to certain religions. That would not surprise me either as establishing an official government religion was common historically. It is actually a BETTER political move to NOT establish an official religion or even a large group of similar religious practices (i.e.: a range of protestant sects).

    .

    Establishing an official government sponsored religion is to sponsor a tyrranical BIG government that intrudes on people’s lives and does not give them as much freedom to govern themselves. Lane wants smaller government yet wants HIS form of Xtianity to be the religion of the government.

  • frankgturner

    @ dingojack #15

    Actually that sounds like a good sci :-*, the difficulty with it being that the same dolts who think reality works like a JM Barrie novel and that The Flintstones was a documentary would probably think it was a re-enactment.

    Sigh.

    http://www.lsned.info

    https://lesoned.WordPress.com

  • raven

    Early America grasped that liberty and freedom depend upon virtue, and virtue depends upon Christianity;

    …virtue depends upon Christianity

    Cthulhu what a liar David Lane is.

    1. Virtue does not depend on Xianity. There are virtuous people every where and at all times, including nonxians and atheists. Lane’s cults make up maybe 3 to 6% of the world’s population.

    2. David Lane’s perversion of xianity isn’t virtuous. It’s evil. The fundies own the Dark Side of our society.

  • dingojack

    frank – while I would generally agree with your post –

    “It is actually a BETTER political move to NOT establish an official religion or even a large group of similar religious practices (i.e.: a range of protestant sects).

    Establishing an official government sponsored religion is to sponsor a … [tyrannical]… BIG government that intrudes on people’s lives and does not give them as much freedom to govern themselves.”

    The evidence that supports this absolute assertion is…?

    Dingo

  • frankgturner

    @ dingojack # 20

    Of course, two things though, I am not speaking in absolute terms, it is more of a general idea. Not surprisingly it is some of those SAME founding fathers (Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin) that actually encouraged colonists in the early days of America so as “not to allow government interference between man and his worship of God.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Separation_of_church_and_state). Some of the best examples of places where church and state are NOT separated and Xtians (among others) ARE being oppressed are countries in the Middle East that live under Sharia Law.

    .

    What is more interesting by reading the mentioned article on Wikipedia and following some of the links (there is a good one on Roger Williams as examined by a reporter for The Smithsonian Institute, to give an example, raven mentioned that too), many early US States DID try to establish religions of the state (one or another sect of protestantism) like the linked article from Lane suggests. So his quote mining of protestant being generally accepted as the religion(s) of the state is grossly inaccurate. This is NOT a good thing though as much of what is demonstrated is how oppressed individuals of OTHER sects of protestant Xtianity were by those who established THEIR sect as the religion of a particular state.

    .

    What I find this hints at is how religion went from being a tribalistic oppressive, polytheistic practice in ancient Europe to being a tribalistic, oppressive, MONOtheistic practice in the colonial Americas over many thousands of years. The wrapping around the package was changed, but what was inside of the box was the same.

    .

    Again this is not an absolute declaration and in the scientific sense I would by no means call it a theory. It is (As Mr. Spock would say), a “hypothesis tat fits the facts.” The point was to get the reverend to think about the real point of what was being said.

  • dingojack

    As I mentioned in an earlier thread – in other English colonies* the ‘established’ religion (along with other ‘non-established’ ones) has faded away, but in America, where there wasn’t any official religion, religion has retained it’s importance. Go figure!

    Remember that Maryland’s ‘established’ religion was initially Catholicism. It rapidly became pluralistic when the local government sensed religious trouble brewing when trying to restrict how people could worship (as that was why Catholics went there in the first place).

    Dingo

    ———

    * except perhaps in Poly/Micro/Melanesian communities across the Pacific Ocean

  • tfkreference

    raven@16

    Good points, and in interest of accuracy, I offer a friendly correction. IIRC, there were 19 hangings and 1 crushed by rocks. I welcome correction (hanging even one person for “witchcraft” is too many, but I’m sure you know how some people will dismiss a entire argument for one small detail).

  • tfkreference

    Dingo@22,

    By not establishing a state religion, the U.S. Constitution created a competitive marketplace, where religions could change to appeal to customers souls in need of redemption.

  • frankgturner

    @ tfkreference #24

    Precisely, of course what was NOT established was for NON religious ideas to appeal to logic and reason to compete on said marketplace. The internet is making that competition readily apparent and I largely suspect this is responsible for the decline in religion in the US of A despite O’Reilly’s bullshit claim (among others) that it is rap music.

    .

    The internet IS essentially the free. market of ideas spoken of in The Republic.

  • raven

    raven@16

    Good points, and in interest of accuracy, I offer a friendly correction. IIRC, there were 19 hangings and 1 crushed by rocks. I welcome correction (hanging even one person for “witchcraft” is too many, but I’m sure you know how some people will dismiss a entire argument for one small detail).

    Yeah, I know.

    The death toll was one crushed by rocks, a method of torture that either produced a confession or a murder.

    19 were hung.

    WIkipedia Salem Witchcraft trials.

    Four other accused and an infant child died in prison.

    When I put an end to the Court there ware at least fifty persons in prision (sic) in great misery by reason of the extream cold and their poverty, most of them having only spectre evidence against them and their mittimusses being defective, I caused some of them to be lettout upon bayle and put the Judges upon consideration of a way to reliefe others and to prevent them from perishing in prision

    5 died in prison.

    You can tell that their prisons weren’t so great. Spending a long time in prison was often a death sentence itself. The governor even knows it and urges them to fix the problem.

    Those people dead in prison wouldn’t have died if not there, accused of witchcraft.

    25 total.

    Which is nothing compared to Europe. The exact numbers killed as alleged witches isn’t too well known, 50,000 to 100,000 are the estimates. None of whom were actual witches.

    PS You can tell a real witch quite easily. If you try to kill them, you immediately get turned into a frog or newt. The witch goes home and that is the end of it.

  • StevoR

    Let’s be completely transparent and unclouded on God’s position on homosexuality:

    1 Samuel 18 English Standard Version (ESV)

    David and Jonathan’s Friendship

    18 As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. 2 And Saul took him that day and would not let him return to his father’s house. 3 Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul. 4 And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt. 5 And David went out and was successful wherever Saul sent him, so that Saul set him over the men of war. And this was good in the sight of all the people and also in the sight of Saul’s servants.

    Oh and also this :

    Samuel 1:26

    ‘I grieve over you, my brother Jonathan. Your love was more dear to me than the love of a woman!’

    Among other verses.

    Oh the Bible contradicts itself? Well, geez, never would have guessed!

  • StevoR

    @26. raven : “PS You can tell a real witch quite easily. If you try to kill them, you immediately get turned into a frog or newt. The witch goes home and that is the end of it.”

    Not quite – after all I got better!

    See : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yp_l5ntikaU

    Also I believe the real test is whether or not she weights the same as a duck!

  • raven

    WIkipedia Boston martyrs.

    Boston martyrs

    The Boston martyrs is the name given in Quaker tradition[1] to the three English members of the Society of Friends, Marmaduke Stephenson, William Robinson and Mary Dyer, and to the Friend William Leddra of Barbados, who were condemned to death and executed by public hanging for their religious beliefs under the legislature of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1659, 1660 and 1661. Several other Friends lay under sentence of death at Boston in the same period, but had their punishments commuted to that of being whipped out of the colony from town to town.

    “The hanging of Mary Dyer on the Boston gallows in 1660 marked the beginning of the end of the Puritan theocracy and New England independence from English rule. In 1661 King Charles II explicitly forbade Massachusetts from executing anyone for professing Quakerism. In 1684 England revoked the Massachusetts charter, sent over a royal governor to enforce English laws in 1686, and in 1689 passed a broad Toleration act.”[2][3]

    The Puritans were vicious killers.

    Among their victims were 4 Quackers, killed as heretics.

    Oddly enough, I never learned any of this is school. The Salem Witch trials, yes. We read Miller’s The Crucible. That they hung heretics and had their charter revoted, no.

    PS Fuck you David Lane. It’s obvious if the New Puritans, the fundie xians ever get power, blood would run in the streets to our knees. Xianity isn’t a source of morality. The fundies are our version of al-Qaeda and ISIS. Glassy eyed mass murderer wannabes. They aren’t hiding it either. Their only theologian, Rushdooney and his biblical law would end up killing 99% of the US population.

  • anubisprime

    Xtians being the lovable. cuddly bunnies they are, have decided that the burning times in Europe were not much to do with them and more to do with secularism, Intellectuals, the common folk were enthusiastic, Doctors and healers that tried to dodge responsibility, among others…indeed a church court was a preferable trial rather then secular court…they proudly declare.

    And the property and land confiscated in the early years was just a sign of the times back then…not really Xtian greed or opportunism.

    Bit of a pattern emerging here….

    the eradication of the heathen indigenous Indians, the slave trade, the miscegenation debate, civil rights struggle, and presumably eventually the anti SSM crew…will apparently have nothing whatsoever to do with Xtians and their twisted religious delusions.

  • anubisprime

    Forgot one of the latest example’s of Religious gerrymandering of reality.

    Apparently a decade long Church commission. conducted in the decided that Galileo was to blame for getting in to trouble with the ecclesiastical authorities.

    Not the church that were powerless to stop the trial apparently, and contrary to the recent press headings…The RCC never actually apologized but admitted to incomplete knowledge at the time….but still all Galileo’s fault.

    The words ‘Sorry about that’ were never actually reported in that or any other form…

    Catholic Answers declares that it was a good job the church dismissed Galileo because he was wrong…

    What JP2 opined…

    Galileo’s run-in with the Church, according to the Pope, involved a “tragic mutual incomprehension” in which both sides were at fault. It was a conflict that ought never to have occurred, because faith and science, properly understood, can never be at odds.

    The oft boasted apology to Galileo is found nowhere…just vague snippets that other folks assume, consider as alluding to, or refer to…the word ‘sorry’ was never uttered or written.

    In fact it seems that the Galileo debacle, and supposed apology was shoe horned into a broader semi-mea culpa that covered the Crusades, the Holocaust and a dozen other shameful disgusting shenanigans that the catholic church has its dabs all over…

    It was not specific and only assumes that Galileo was included in a not-apology screed…by JP2.

  • tfkreference

    Thanks, raven, I fell into the trap of considering only the official figures.

  • EnlightenmentLiberal

    For a compulsory state educational system so structures a child’s life that if religious exercises are held to be an impermissible activity in schools, religion is placed at an artificial and state-created disadvantage.

    Fortunately, that’s exactly what the first amendment requires.

    If compulsory government schools have compulsory religious courses, I cannot fathom how anyone can honestly say that it is not “Congress [making a] law respecting an establishment of religion”. What the hell do they think an establishment of religion is if it doesn’t include compulsory religious instruction to children?