For those of us who missed the broadcast (me included)…
The questions could have been better, tougher, and followed up more energetically. But the answers seem to jive with thoughts that remind me of something John Courtney Murray, SJ wrote back in 1960,
The American proposition asserted that the people can live a life of reason, exercise their birthright of freedom, and assume responsibility for the judgment, direction, and correction of the course of public affairs. It implied that there is an authentic and exalted human value in this commission to the people of the right of self-government.On this premise the American system made government simply an instrumental function of the body politic for a set of limited purposes. Its competence was confined to the political as such and to the promotion of the public welfare of the community as a political, i.e., lay, community. In particular, its power of censoring or inhibiting utterance was cut to a minimum, and it was forbidden to be the secular arm of any church. In matters spiritual the people were committed to their freedom, and religion was guaranteed full freedom to achieve its own task of effecting the spiritual liberation of man. To this task the contribution of the state would be simply that of rendering assistance in the creation of those conditions of freedom, peace, and public prosperity in which the spiritual task might go forward.
And a worthy task it is, lest we forget..