David Barton Speaks with Bryan Fischer About His Debunked Book

David Barton appeared on Bryan Fischer‘s American Family Radio yesterday to talk about the “attacks” on his book The Jefferson Lies (and by “attacks,” I mean fact-checking):

They revel in the fact that Barton is the most “dangerous man in America” because he presents a threat to “the agenda of secular fundamentalists on the left.” Then Barton cries “woe is me” about how he had no input into publisher Thomas Nelson’s decision to pull Barton’s book from the shelves:

Barton:… [publisher] Thomas Nelson never asked us for any documentation to refute [Warren] Throckmorton, which really is easy… we’ve started releasing pieces now one at a time, just pointing out how errant he is, how historically errant… so Thomas Nelson capitulated.

They weren’t finished bashing Throckmorton, whose book debunking Barton eventually forced publisher Thomas Nelson to pull Barton’s book from the shelves:

Fischer: [Throckmorton] believed in reparative therapy, for instance, for homosexuals… and it seems like when he changed his mind about that, when he switched sides on the issue of homosexuality, then it was inevitable that in the course of time, he was going to be an enemy of the Truth, basically, in all of its forms.

So… when Throckmorton said gay people can’t just “turn straight” any more than straight people can “turn gay,” Barton and Fischer knew he was trouble. Considering even a lot of evangelical Christians now say you can’t change someone’s sexual orientation, that’s a bold claim.

I love how they’re digging themselves further and further into obsolescence. It won’t be long until there’s just a small handful of Christians who are so rabidly anti-gay that they’ll only have each other to talk to.

If you want to hear two ignorant people talk about how awesome they are to fight back against the secular liberal agenda (a.k.a. “Reality”), watch that video.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    The real fun is yet to come.  He can’t hide from Chris Rodda forever.

  • shannonkish

    David Barton just sounds ignorant. 

  • LesterBallard

    It won’t be long until there’s just a small handful of Christians who are so rabidly anti-gay that they’ll only have each other to talk to.”

    Wishful thinking. I share it, but it is wishful thinking.

  • shannonkish

    Barton sure does like the victim mentality!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1351473675 Matthew Baker

    Two silver-haired peas in a pod. A revisionist, jingoistic, hate filled pod but a pod none the less.

  • Gus Snarp

    I think I’ll save the brain bleach and skip this one.

  • rlrose328

    I listened long enough to hear those 2 quotes and that was enough lies for one afternoon.  How can so much hatred and falsehood nonsense even exist in their heads much less come out of their mouths?  Ignorance is rampant in that video.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=608057740 Greg Scott

    This is like listening to someone with Down syndrome agree with someone with autism about unicorns.

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    People with high functioning autism are more likely to be atheists.


  • http://gloomcookie613.tumblr.com GloomCookie613

    That’s insulting to folks with Down’s, autism, AND unicorns.


    David Barton lacks the educational credentials to teach history at the grade school level and is no more a historian than he is an astronaut. He’s just one more religious con man getting rich at the expense of ignorant, gullable, people.

  • Drew41

    For anyone interested in what well-established Christian historians think about the American founding, see The Search for Christian America, written by Mark Noll, Nathan Hatch, and George Marsden. 

    Their central thesis is straightforward: “…a careful study of the facts of history shows that early American does not deserve to be considered uniquely, distinctively, or even predominately Christian, if we mean by the word Christian a state of society reflecting the ideals presented in Scripture.”

    Barton has little significance outside a pocket of aging, anti-intellectual Christian Right Republicans. His lunacy may provide you a smug sense of intellectual superiority, but should you actually want to engage historical study on this issue, I’d recommend the book above. 

  • SwedishSJ

    I would be delighted to know of Barton’s limited significance, were it not for the fact that this “pocket of aging, anti-intellectual Christian Right Republicans” has more of a platform than you seem to think they do.  Unfortunately, their lunacy cannot be merely laughed at and dismissed, because Barton’s allies in government and in right-wing circles (Glenn Beck being one of them) are not some powerless fringe group; their voice in the debate is loud and heard by many.

  • Spamamander

    Frankly I’m surprised that having Fischer and Barton in the same room didn’t cause the universe to collapse from the implosion of stupid.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000646074664 Michael Rollins

     Anytime I post on a Beck-Barton page or site and use the names Roger Williams and John Leland, my post are deleted and I am banned. They will leave ad hominem and criticism of their facts, but urgently remove post about early Baptist and their mission of faith known as Individual Liberty of Conscience. I believe they fear this type of discussion and it needs to be brought to them. The early secularist need to be heard.

  • joshua

    have any of you actually researched for yourselves the historical documents and writing of the founding fathers or does all your information come from the opinions of present day scholars. I suggest to you all to go to the source. See what the founding fathers actually said and then formulate your own conclusions.

  • joshua

    for the record I am neither a Republican nor a right wing, just a man who was curiuos so i researched for the facts.

  • joshua

    start with this John Adams july 4 1793 oration. its all public records

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    With all due respect, reading a bunch of original documents that someone else gives you isn’t all that different from reading how they’ve quoted those original documents. The trick is in reading widely enough, and doing one’s best to fight confirmation bias, to get the full picture in context.

    People can quote-fight all day. But at the end of the day what it really comes down to is what kind of government we think we should have. Do you think our government should do more to promote religion? Or should our government do less? What best supports religious freedom- our government promoting religion in general? Or a particular religion? Or not promoting?

  • josh thomas

    With equal respect i am not referring to regurgitating quotes cited by David Barton or anyone else for that matter. I am saying that you should research these documents, not that anyone gives you, but that you yourself find in the public records to find the original intent of the Constitution that birthed an entirely new government than any that has ever been created. not hand me down quotes but searching the public records say for example of the Annals of Congress, Congressional Records, Journals of the Continental Congress among countless other sources to find the facts. After all it is not an issue of, as you put it ‘what kind of government you think we should have today’ or anybody else’s opinions of the “kind” of government we should have today. It is a matter of defending the Constitution of the United States that countless men shed their blood for, and the dissolution of that Constitution today. What amazes and appalls me is the voluntary willingness of Americans such as yourself to hand over your First amendment rights to a misinterpreted quote by Thomas Jefferson, who was never even present at the creation of the Constitution. The issue is this; has our Congress made laws that prohibit the exercise of religion?

    The answer is yes, and begs the question, what has become of the Constitution of this nation? And furthermore should the antagonists of the Constitution consider themselves citizens and patriots of this nation? After all, it is the Constitution and the intent of the Founding Fathers that made this nation what it is.
    So I ask you, how is the research of what you call “a bunch of original documents” irrelevant in discovering the truth in this debate.

  • josh thomas

    for reasons of computer illiteracy i posted my reply on the website not realizing at first i can reply directly to you. I hope that we can continue our discussion. I would like to add that I do so with respect and consideration, not hostility.

  • josh thomas

    Google government websites and research the original documents, see for yourself.
    See what the facts are.

  • josh thomas

    mulibraries.missouri.edu/specialcollections/fourth.htm is a great site to start.

  • josh thomas

    to Rich Wilson,
    Further reflection on your rebuttal reveals and betrays the true nature of your argument. Not to, as your group claims, to rediscover the real history of our nation, the true intentions of the founding fathers, and the true interpretation of the Constitution (whereby you attack the character of men like David Barton, who you claim distorts history for his agenda) but rather as you have stated “at the end of the day it comes down to what we think our government should be’ there by disregarding the relevance of citing and researching the original documents of history and replacing them with what you assert is far superior: your own opinions. In doing so you have played the hypocrites, practicing the very thing you accuse Barton of doing.
    Your purpose and plan are not to recapture the true history of this nation but to ignore them in order to try to create your own form of government masquerading itself as the original United States. Uncredible as self educated men may be in this sites opinion, we are not blind.

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    What amazes and appalls me is the voluntary willingness of Americans such as yourself to hand over your First amendment rights to a misinterpreted quote by Thomas Jefferson, who was never even present at the creation of the Constitution.

    We equally have an agenda. You think that using a phrase that doesn’t exist in the constitution to describe a concept that does is “to hand over”.

    I think that what the founding fathers wanted was religious freedom. And I think that the more government involvement there is in religion, the less religious freedom we have.

    It is a matter of defending the Constitution of the United States that countless men shed their blood for, and the dissolution of that Constitution today.

    You have convinced yourself that the constitution (in particular the establishment clause) means something different than most SCOTUS judges have. I daresay that if we ever found (and verified) a letter from Jefferson saying “I sure hope this country never comes up with a stupid motto like In God We Trust!” that you’d change your tune.

    I’m interested in defending the constitution because I think, completely aside from any supporting letters or quotes or anything else, that it defines a country with the utmost freedom of religion, and does so by keeping government out of religion. What it seems that you want is not only personal religious freedom, but for our government as an entity to have religious freedom. And that seems fine to you as long as the government’s religious views match your own personal religious views. What you don’t see seem to grasp is the danger of the government having religious views.

  • j thomas

    I do agree with you on your point that the founding father wanted religious freedom. I also agree with you that the second clause of the First amendment was to keep the government out of our religious expressions and practices. What i disagree with is the out of context misinterpretation of the phrase “wall of separation between the church and state” to justify the governments passing laws that prohibit American’s free exercise and practice of religion such as praying voluntarily in school, reading or even bringing your bible to school, or thanking God in graduation speeches, teaching an alternative to evolution such a intelligent design to students, or even displaying a nativity scene outside a government building to speak of just a few. This is completely contrary to the second clause of the First amendment and has been justified by the out of context use of Jefferson’s actual assurance in his letter to the Danbury Baptist’s that the amendment would in no way give power to the state to interfere with our religious activities.
    This is the reason why I continue to stress the importance of research into the many writings and historical documents of the Founding Fathers. It is the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the second clause, using Jefferson’s out of context quote, which they used to justify their ruling in 1947 and 48 (McCollum v The board of Education) to reinvent that clause. So if that is the Supreme Court’s method to interpret (what seemed clear enough in laymens terms to me) what the founding fathers really meant, than it is only right that we follow that method even further so as to reach a full understanding of the Founder’s true intent’s as a whole. Not simply one phrase they keep using to push their cause.
    And yes, if, during my research I was to stumble upon a phrase like Jefferson saying I hope this country never comes up with a stupid phrase like in God we trust I would certainly change my tune. But as of yet I am still waiting for some of the critics of Barton or anyone else to provide their readers with some real evidence in the historical writings and documents preserved for the public in the Library of Congress and so many other institutions in this country that backs their claim that the Founders were anything but devout God fearing followers of the Bible, whatever their doctrinal differences might have been. On the contrary all my extensive research has supplied me with a slew of evidence that these men were such. And I’m not researching modern books. I’m going to the source.
    I do however believe that we both agree on the fact that the Founders wanted religious freedom. There must be a wall of separation that keeps the government out of the workings of the church where it has no right, yet it has, and the government today has made many laws prohibiting the exercise of religion. Breaching that wall since 1947.

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    such as praying voluntarily in school, reading or even bringing your bible to school, or thanking God in graduation speeches

    None of those are prohibited. Those are all rights that groups such as Americans United for Separation of Church and State fully support. The only cases I’m aware of where students have been told they can’t pray is when it disrupts other students. e.g. a Muslim student’s time to pray is in the middle of class. No, sorry, you can’t get out of your desk, face Mecca, and pray out loud in the middle of math class. And when a group of students in NY wanted to ‘Tebow’ in the middle of the hallway. They were asked to move so they didn’t block the hallway. Those that refused were suspended. Not for praying, but for refusing the order to not block the hallway. The Graduation one is a fine line. A prayer in the graduation address would probably not be allowed by the courts, but thanking God probably would. It comes down to how clear it is that it’s the student’s own personal view vs. an official view of the school.

    Statements such as yours reinforce my thought (and others on this blog disagree with me) that there is an attack on religious freedom in this country, and it comes from mis-information. The idea that kids can’t pray in or bring bibles to school is so common, that it is becoming a de-facto reality. I wish more kids would pray in school, as it would work to get rid of that myth. And yes, I know there are examples where kids have been told to leave their bibles at home. They are unlawful, and should be reported to the ACLU who would be eager to defend them.

    , teaching an alternative to evolution such a intelligent design to students

    There is no alternative to evolution. Intelligent design isn’t a scientific theory. Completely aside from whether either one is correct or not, a theory must explain how things happen. Intelligent design attempts (and fails IMO) to explain why evolution is wrong. But ID doesn’t explain anything itself, other than a vague “something intelligent” which could be God, or Vishnu, or aliens, or giant turtle, or the programmers of the computer simulation we’re living in. This was admitted by the ID side in the Dover trial. Without some proposal as to how we have the diversity of life that we do, ID is just Genesis. Which is fine in a comparative religion class, but no more appropriate for a science class than alchemy or astrology or any other religious version of creation.

    displaying a nativity scene outside a government building

    Which is fine as long as it’s not only a nativity. And yes you can dig up what I’d consider some shaky cases like the one where the Menorah was permitted but the Creche wasn’t. But the general rule seems to be that as long as you’re allowing any religious view, you’re fine. Many cities do it that way with no complaint from the FFRF or AU or ACLU.

    Founders were anything but devout God fearing followers of the Bible

    ok, I’ll bite, which Bible? The KJV, or the Jefferson :-)

    Have you seen http://video.pbs.org/video/2315729403 ? I’d be interested to hear your take, as someone who has studied the history. Someone else who didn’t watch the whole thing said there were a number of inaccuracies.

    A little addition to my intent- I didn’t mean to be that dismissive of the founding fathers’ intent. I just think the reason I feel I defend the constitution isn’t for love of history, but love of what it declares. If the Constitution had something I really thought had to be changed, I hope my reverence for the founding fathers wouldn’t stop me from wanting to change it. It was designed to be amended, but with great care.

  • j thomas

    Thank you for clarifying to me the falsehood that children are not aloud to pray in public schools. I have looked into it further. However this does not dismiss that fact that it is the agenda of the Humanist movement to remove religion from the schools. It was the agenda of John Dewey, 1 of the 34 signers of the Humanist Manifesto vol I, who vehemently opposed religious material or ideals being taught in schools. Of course it was not his influence that guided the Supreme Courts ruling in 1948. But it is very interesting to contrast the lives and philosophy and writings of John Dewey, acclaimed Father of Modern Education and that of Noah Webster acclaimed Father of Public Education in America, and parellell these two with the change in education has had throughout American History. Religion is being systematically removed from public education to the point that it is unrecognizable of the schools during the 18th and 19th century. This change is evident in the behavior of students today, though I am not suggesting that it is the only influence responsible for the rapid decline of morals exhibited by students, and the equal rise in violence, disrespect, and out of control behavior by the same.
    As noah webster said “In my opinion, Christian religion is the most important and one of the first things, in which all children under a free government ought to be instructed.” [1828 preface to Websters American Dictionary of the English Language]

    I disagree with the idea that Intelligent Design is not scientific and many respected and credible “scientist” (such a vauge term) would also disagree including Dr James P Gills Md., Micheal Behe Phd., to name two. the popular claim that ID doesn’t explain how things happened is the same problem that evolution faces when inquired as to the cause and effect of so many of the assumptions in for example the Big Bang theory. Where did the matter come from, what produced the motion or energy for the event etc. But I believe it to be a matter of who holds the platform who decides what is “science” and what is not. My opinion is that Historical Science (that attempting to make an explanation as to orgins) and applied sciences are two different feilds and should not be confused for the other. I beleive that at some point all historical sciences leave the realm of emperical, demonstratable, and observable science, enter the realm of phylosophy. And if both evolution and Id were treated as such it would open the phorum to a much more open minded, not one sided debate. But that is simply my opinion. The evolution/ special creation/ Id debate is a whole other discussion all together, but I believe is related to the Humanist agenda to monopolize the education department in America and to remove religion from the minds of students all together in order to establish their new world agenda set forth in the tenants of the Humanist Manifestos. I have studied ID quite a bit, an though I am by no means an expert or authority in any means on the subject of the sciences, I do recognise it to be scientific regardless of popular opinion. After all at one point in history Galileo’s observations and conclusions were considered “unscientific” if you will. I believe that the issue is that modern day Darwinian evolutionist are unwilling to ‘give the floor’ to any other train of thought or be taken serious to scrutinise the theory at all, (which scrutiny is part of the scientific method) actually creating a stumbling stone to free thought and higher learning by anyone who dosn’t share their beliefs.

  • j thomas

    Another supporter of ID is the nobel prize winning Francis Crick, who along with his colleage discovered the Dna helix and pioneered the research to “unravel” and understant the human genome. Upon discovering the complexity of DNA he was no longer able to believe Darwin’s theory of gradual evolution, beleiving the proccess to be impossible and this credible nobel prize winning scientist began theorising that extraterrestrials must have left the first life forms on this planet as a possible science experiment. This is not a kooky UFO conspiracy theorist. Sure the man may or may not have been laughed out of the scientific cirlcles that before welcomed and revered his reseach before, I don’t know. But the scientific research he conducted brought him to the conlusion that life could not have arisen from accidentlal random natural proccesses no matter how much time these 4 base ‘sugars’ were allowed to bump into each other. So are his findings not science, because they disagree with post modern Darwinian evolution. Numerous other problems with Darwin’s gradual evolution theory have given rise to a number of other respected credible scientist to abandon traditional Darwinian evolution and to formulate more recent theories such a punctuated equallibrium to account for the lack of evidence in the fossil record. My question is how is punctuated equallibrium any less miraculous than special creation itself.
    My last point is the question what is the definition of science? Is it as the naturalist state only the knowledge of the material processess therefore eliminating all outside train of thought, or is it in its purist definition the pursuit of knowledge.
    (I am not disregarding the scientific method of course)

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    The argument from authority doesn’t work well for ID. It’s never a good argument anyway, but if you want to cite examples, the rebuttal from the evolution side is ‘Project Steve’ http://ncse.com/taking-action/project-steve

    Granted, Crick is a big name, but you have to do some serious confirmation bias to think Crick would support the teaching of anything but evolution in the classroom. He was one of the signatories of the Humanist Manifesto:

    Knowledge of the world is derived by observation, experimentation, and rational analysis. (See empiricism.)

    Humans are an integral part of nature, the result of unguided evolutionary change.

    Ethical values are derived from human need and interest as tested by experience. (See ethical naturalism.)

    Life’s fulfillment emerges from individual participation in the service of humane ideals.

    Humans are social by nature and find meaning in relationships.

    Working to benefit society maximizes individual happiness.

    He was one if the signer of an amicus brief in Edwards v Aguillard (1987) stating: “‘Creation-science’ simply has no place in the public-school science classroom”

    Given his quotes that express doubts over the odds of DNA coming together in the first place, I could by that he may have been a deistic evolutionist, but no way would he sat, for example, that humans are unrelated to other apes. His extraterrestrial thoughts weren’t ‘must have’ but ‘gee, could it have been’. And that’s still only getting us to the emergence of the first life, which isn’t what evolution covers.

    Punctuated equilibrium isn’t an alternate to the theory to evolution. It describes one view as to the rate at which things evolve, whether it’s steady or in spurts. People who argue for punctuated equilibrium are still evolutionists. You can presume that God pushed things if you want, but then you have to explain how you know it’s God and not our Alien Overlords.

    I would argue that at a very basic level trying to come up with holes in evolution is science. And there’s nothing necessarily wrong with discussing what some people see as flaws in evolution, assuming they’re at the correct level at which the course is being taught. And I think my point about ID not being a theory itself is in the next comment…

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    I think we’re going to have to agree to disagree on the goals of humanism re: religion and school. I’m sure you can find some extreme examples of people saying kids should be taught that there is no God. Honestly a pretty fringe element, up there with the people who think the moon landing is a hoax. Whenever a legislator tries to get a bible course introduced as a high school collective, the reaction from the ‘wall’ side seems to be twofold: skepticism that it will actually be an unbiased course about religion vs. dogma and, it would be great if it really was unbiased. Most atheist parents I know (and I interact with a lot of them) would love a true course in comparative religion for their kids. But the objections always come from the theistic parents who don’t want their kids to be taught a variety of views, they want their kids to be taught one ‘truth’. To put it another way, I’m not worried that my kid will suffer any supernatural repercussions for praying to the wrong god. I think his rights would be violated if he were coerced to, but he won’t have to apologize to a different god. Some theists on the other hand, are very deeply concerned that their child pray the wrong way.

    Sometimes I think I should be for lead prayer in school- and let all the religious parents get upset over which prayer is used.

    Ok, why ID doesn’t have a scientific theory: As I said in the other comment, I could be persuaded that some of the things ID does are science, but ID still doesn’t have a theory to teach. You disagree. I’d ask if you have anything within the last few years (and that’s rhetorical because I’m pretty sure I’d have heard about it).

    In Kitzmiller v. Dover, Barbara Forest in testimony presented an interview with Paul Nelson in a Christian magazine.

    The question he was asked was, “Is Intelligent Design just a critique of evolutionary theory or does it offer somethign more. Does it offer something humankind needs to know?”

    His response was:

    “Easily the biggest challenge facing the ID community is to develop a full fledged theory of biological design. We don’t have such a theory right now, and that’s a real problem. Without a theory it’s very hard to know where to direct your research focus. Right now we’ve got a bag of powerful intuitions, and a handful of notions such as irreducible complexity, but as yet, no general theory of biological design.”

    1:29:15 here, although I highly recommend watching the whole thing.


    Ken Miller (Roman Catholic) also has a great Youtube summary of the trial.

    There are evolutionists (like Ken Miller and Francis Collins) who think God is involved somehow. But to recall your Galileo, molecular genetics has given us the ability to compare our ancestry just as the telescope enabled Galileo to look at Jupiter and see that something else in the Universe had its own moons. And we have seen that we are more closely related to chimps than chimps are to gorillas. And all life on this planet is related.

    You can assume God started it and nobody can say you’re wrong. But if we’re not related to chimps, then God is one hell of a smart ass.

  • j thomas

    I think you are misunderstanding some of the points I have made. Firstly I did not claim that Crick was a supporter of ID. I know that he is an evolutionist. What I was saying is that his conclusion that extreterrestrial involment in evolution is a form of ID, something other than random natural processess might have been involved.
    Secondly, I understand punctuated equallibrium and that it is evolution. My comment was that how is abrupt evolution such as a reptile hatching a bird egg (to exaggerate the theory) any less unscientific than special creation. A point that has caused many Darwinian gradual evolutionist to strongly oppose Hawkins thoery.
    The crazy thing is that the forum is closed to all discussion outside of evolution. You can argue all day how evolution took place and there are many diameteracally opposed theories, but as long as you believe some form of evolution you can be heard. It is true ID is a theory that is yet to mature, but does that mean it shouldn’t be allowed a fair chance to be explored.
    Thirdly, I am not saying that the Humanist movement is openly trying to get children to not believe in God. But they are no less blind to the fact than I am, that if you indoctrinate children with a one sided veiw of orgins, and call it fact with no rival, that the majority of the students will come to the conclusion that the God of the bible- which no one can discuss- is irrelevant, or more likely non existant. I’m not saying everyone will reach that conclusion, but it tends to be the more logical deduction. as Hitler stated, “Give me the textbooks and I will control the state.” He understood how to change a peoples beliefs, go for the impressionable minds of the youth.
    But in all this I have digressed from the main point I had origionally set out to make. Which is, in all of this debunking of Barton I’ve read and the attack of so called “revisionists” why is there not more references to the actual historical documentation on the “wall side” Why because the evidence for their claims are not in them. On the contrary there is a slew of support for this nation’s orgins as a Christian nation. In all my research I’ve found no evidence on the contrary.
    Even a simple look at the fact that we have case after case of the wall side as the plantiff demanding a removal of organized prayer and bible study, removing of the ten commandment from government buildings, even the phrase under God from the pledge, etc. begs the question what were they all doing there in the first place to need to be removed. Who then is the true “revisionist” After all the plantiff in these cases were not Christians seeking to add for example the ten commandments. The ten commandments were already there and offended someone. Now I understand if people today want change and want to remove all these things, but is it right to use the argument that the founders weren’t really Christians and accuse men such as Barton of lying to propagate their cause. I say no. They should have some integrity and admit it is them who are the revisionist and are making the changes, and create a following based on that.
    They provide little if no historical evidence because there is none. They constantly refer to Jefferson and this one phrase he used while dismissing all the other evidence that could help them get a fuller understanding of the fore fathers intent. As you stated in our first discussion, “the trick is reading widely enough and doing ones best to avoid confirmation bias.”. Most of the wall side write books with footnotes and references not to origional documents but to critics who wrote books without references. Its a hoax. And its dishonest. As I said before, why is all this stuff there that the “wall side” feels so strongly the need to remove in the first place.
    part of my twisted humor wants so badly to echo the words of Rodger Waters in protest ” tear down the wall!”

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    A lot of the evolution/ID stuff is just going around in circles. But evolution does not deny God. Sure, evolution contradicts a literal interpretation of Genesis, but even Behe doesn’t take Genesis literally. Dembski leans more religious, but even he says it doesn’t have to be God, and could be space aliens. Telling kids we evolved doesn’t mean God didn’t create life. Heck, even Behe accepts the common descent, he just thinks something besides natural selection had to guide it.

    ok, moving on… (btw, sorry for mis-reading you where I did. I opted to leave my reply to end of the day so I could give it some time, but I guess I didn’t give enough to reading vs. writing)

    Back to the main point, I no doubt have not read as much of the original documents as you. I’d love to, but I have a long reading list on a lot of topics.

    On the contrary there is a slew of support for this nation’s orgins as a Christian nation. In all my research I’ve found no evidence on the contrary.

    Not even the Treaty of Tripoli? Have you read “The United States: A Christian Nation” by Justice Brewer? He attempts to explain his written decision on SCOTUS saying we are a Christian Nation. In that we are Christian in customs and traditions, and population.

    And all of this is true. We are a mostly Christian electorate, electing only Christian Presidents who appoint only Christian (ok, a couple of Jews) Judges, who are approved by all but a tiny handful of recent non-Christian legislators. And yet those same judges have made those rulings you disagree with. Are the 20% of this country who identify as something other than Christian really twisting arms?

    Even a simple look at the fact that we have case after case of the wall side as the plantiff demanding a removal of organized prayer and bible study, removing of the ten commandment from government buildings, even the phrase under God from the pledge, etc. begs the question what were they all doing there in the first place to need to be removed.

    If there are a lot of things that people think are wrong, then there should a lot of cases to correct them. And those cases should win or lose on their merits. Just because something has existed for a long time doesn’t mean it’s right. The ‘wall’ side includes a great many Christians who think, as I do, that religious freedom is preserved by the wall.

    Your pledge example is an interesting one. What was wrong with the original pledge that it had to have “Under God” inserted in 1954? Isn’t that revisionism? And of course that’s one where the ‘wall’ side has lost. I don’t like it, but I have to accept it. It bugs me a little less than the motto. The motto irks me not so much because of its theism, but it’s factual inaccuracy Even if you believe in God, it is quite clear that many American,such as myself, don’t believe in, let alone trust, God. I’d be cool with “In God 78% of us Trust”.

    There’s more, but I think my time would be better spent doing some more reading. I do like that you ended with a quote from an atheist though :-)