Pennsylvania House Unanimously Violates First Amendment Of Constitution By Passing Bible Praising Resolution

Author: January 28, 2012 4:40 pm

You can’t make this stuff up, folks. In a blatant violation of the Establishment Clause in the United States Constitution, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed a resolution declaring 2012 ‘The Year of The Bible,’ and praised the book as the greatest book of the year even though there are still 11 months left until 2013. The resolution declares that the Bible played a major role in the Constitution and the founding of America, even though there is no mention of the Bible, God, Jesus, or Christianity in the Constitution. The resolution goes on to cite the many Presidents who supposedly ‘paid tribute to the influence of the Bible in our country’s development,’ and declares that Americans ‘need to study and apply the teachings of the holy scriptures.’ Here’s the resolution in full:


A RESOLUTION

Declaring 2012 as the “Year of the Bible” in Pennsylvania.

WHEREAS, The Bible, the word of God, has made a unique
contribution in shaping the United States as a distinctive and
blessed nation and people; and

WHEREAS, Deeply held religious convictions springing from the
holy scriptures led to the early settlement of our country; and

WHEREAS, Biblical teachings inspired concepts of civil
government that are contained in our Declaration of Independence
and the Constitution of the United States; and

WHEREAS, Many of our great national leaders, among them
President Washington, President Jackson, President Lincoln,
President Wilson and President Reagan, paid tribute to the
influence of the Bible in our country’s development, as
exemplified by the words of President Jackson that the Bible is
“the rock on which our Republic rests”; and

WHEREAS, The history of our country clearly illustrates the
value of voluntarily applying the teachings of the scriptures in
the lives of individuals, families and societies; and

WHEREAS, This nation now faces great challenges that will
test it as it has never been tested before; and

WHEREAS, Renewing our knowledge of and faith in God through
holy scripture can strengthen us as a nation and a people;
therefore be it

RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives declare 2012 as
the “Year of the Bible” in Pennsylvania in recognition of both
the formative influence of the Bible on our Commonwealth and
nation and our national need to study and apply the teachings of
the holy scriptures.

I’m not surprised that Democrats helped pass this. If they hadn’t, Republicans would be accusing them of being “secular atheist jihadists” or something along those lines. The Bible didn’t actually influence the Constitution. That’s the kind of revisionist history that Republicans and the Christian Right have been shoveling for decades. They’ve even pushed totally made up quotes that they attributed to the Founders as proof of their claims. The Founding Fathers knew what they were doing when they wrote the Constitution. They gave ALL religions the freedom to exist and flourish and they forbade the government from putting any one religion over another. If the Founding Fathers wanted Christianity to be the national religion, they would have declared it. How can the Christian Right say that the Founders intended America to be a Christian nation when they didn’t mention anything to do with Christianity in the Constitution and they explicitly forbade the government from declaring a national religion? The fact is, the Founding Fathers weren’t impressed with Christianity and knew that religion is a divider. To the Founders, all religions were equal but if one were to influence the government it would obliterate the freedom and rights we enjoy today. And if you still believe that the Founders intended America to be a Christian nation, you should read these real quotes.

“Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.”
~ Thomas Jefferson in an 1814 letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper.

“The Government of the United States is not in any sense founded upon the Christian religion.”- George Washington, as stated in the signed Treaty of Tripoli in 1797.

“In no instance have the churches been guardians of the liberties of the people.”
~James Madison

“The purpose of separation of church and state is to keep forever from these shores the ceaseless strife that has soaked the soil of Europe with blood for centuries.”
~James Madison

“I almost shudder at the thought of alluding to the most fatal example of the abuses of grief which the history of mankind has preserved — the Cross. Consider what calamities that engine of grief has produced!”
~John Adams

Even Pennsylvanian sage Benjamin Franklin didn’t think religion was useful in government:

“A Firehouse is more useful than a church.”
~Benjamin Franklin

Franklin even noted that religions that seek help from civil power are bad religions, which happens to describe the Christian religion today. The Christian Right is so desperate to increase membership, that it seeks to force Christianity upon the American people by government decree.

“When a religion is good, I conceive it will support itself; and when it does not support itself, and God does not take care to support it so that its professors are obligated to call for help of the civil power, it’s a sign, I apprehend, of its being a bad one.”
~Benjamin Franklin

Does it really sound like these five men loved Christianity and wanted it to have influence in our nation’s laws and government? They sure have a funny way of showing it.

 

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19 Comments

  • It doesn’t matter if HR 535 is only a resolution, it still violates Article I, Section of the PENNSYLVANIA contitution: “no human authority can, in any case whatever, control or interfere with the rights of conscience, and no preference shall ever be given by law to any religious establishments or modes of worship.”

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Tripoli
    President John Adams

    Article 11: As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.

  • It is my understanding that a state in the U.S. can adopt an official state religion – unless it would be a violation of their own state’s constitution (and many states have modeled their constitutions on the U.S. Constitution). That said, if a state opts to do this, IMO, they should no longer receive Federal highway money, etc.

  • Actually the Christianity I know doesn’t seek power but reaches out to help people. Not by state.

    The Christian Liberals are starting to sound like Atheists. I talk to them, its like they lost their faith in God. They only judge and humiliate those who they see do wrong. So what if they make us look bad, we have to remember that God will take care of them in his own time.

    • The christianity you know? Do you live under a rock?

      Also, your ‘god’ (going by your comment, never mind the contents of the bible) sounds like a fucking cunt. Who in their right mind would want to worship a fucking cunt?

      You, and everyone like you, are fucking nuts.

  • Unless they can show me some solid advice in the Bible that addresses how to solve REAL problems facing the citizens of this commonwealth today, I, as a taxpaying Pennsylvanian who pays THEIR salaries, DEMAND that they stop wasting their time and our money on such useless garbage!

  • Even though this is a resolution our State legislators have no business endorsing any one particular religion or religious text over another. This is part of the dominionists movement in our country, it is meant to divide the nation between them and us. Putting those on both sides of the political field on the spot, if you don’t vote for this then we’ll make sure you lose your next election by pointing out the fact you’re against religion, specifically ‘Christianity.’ Regardless, it is still a violation of church and state. I also find it convenient that they leave out many of the founding fathers that disagree with their point of view particularly Thomas Jefferson.

  • It doesnt violate the First Amendment because it’s a Resolution, not a law – it has no ‘legal effect’ other than expressing an opinion. And while the Bible and Christianity has had an undeniably strong influence on the nation, the resolution is simply pandering to the fundamenetalists – and historically incorrect in a number of places.

    • And if you still believe that the Founders intended America to be a Christian nation, you should read these real quotes.

      “Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.”
      ~ Thomas Jefferson in an 1814 letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper.

      “The Government of the United States is not in any sense founded upon the Christian religion.”- George Washington, as stated in the signed Treaty of Tripoli in 1797.

      “In no instance have the churches been guardians of the liberties of the people.”
      ~James Madison

      “The purpose of separation of church and state is to keep forever from these shores the ceaseless strife that has soaked the soil of Europe with blood for centuries.”
      ~James Madison

      “I almost shudder at the thought of alluding to the most fatal example of the abuses of grief which the history of mankind has preserved — the Cross. Consider what calamities that engine of grief has produced!”
      ~John Adams

      Even Pennsylvanian sage Benjamin Franklin didn’t think religion was useful in government:

      “A Firehouse is more useful than a church.”
      ~Benjamin Franklin

  • PA must be the most conservative northern state after Indiana possibly. I mean this is not Alabama or West Virginia, what is wrong?

  • As a Pennsylvanian this does not surprise me at all, because the republican party is so entrenched in this state especially at the local level. Thank you for bringing this to national attention.

  • “But this book has no answers!” (whilst reading the bible) – –Homer Simpson

  • As an attorney who in retirement obtained a pastoral degree and served as pastoral associate of a Catholic parish, I have to say that the Pennsylvania legislators sense of history and Constitutional law is weaker than that of the average Boy Scout working on a law merit badge.

  • Just another way for Penn. officials to distract their constituents, all the while taking said constituents to the cleaners. Michigan, Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin, Kansas, Missouri, Maine residents agree. Just more unqualified so called “representatives” out to advance their agendas and make trouble for the country as a whole.

  • It’s a resolution, not a law or amendment.. It doesn’t mean any thing legally and it has not legal stature what so ever..

    Still this will stir up some debate. Government should not be wasting time support religion in any way (either through laws or “we approve” messages).

    Reminds of our fed congress spending time to pass a resolution saying “in god we trust” is our national motto, or whatever it was.. Don’t they have something better to do…

    • One would think they do, wouldn’t one?

      • Oh, I’m sure they do. It’s just that things like this capture our attention while the really important stuff slips through under the radar. They’re pretty sneaky with that.

    • http://www.thereal80percent.com

      January 27th, 2012

      Why we are the 80%

      The evidence shows that the extremes on both sides of the political spectrum represent less than 20% of the American population. Whether these voters’ primary political goal is to increase entitlement programs or abolish women’s right to choice, or any other controversial social issue, very few of us base our vote on one single social issue alone.

      According to the following Gallup Poll:

      http://www.gallup.com/poll/13786/abortion-issue-guides-one-five-voters.aspx

      52% of Americans identify as “Pro-Choice,” and 41% of Americans identify as “Pro-life.” Of this, 30% of “Pro-Lifers” will only vote for a Pro-Life candidate and 11% of “Pro-Choicers” will only vote for a Pro-Choice candidate.

      This equates to 12.3% of “Pro-Lifers” basing their votes solely on this one social issue and and 5.7% of “Pro-Choicers” basing their vote solely on this one social issue.

      This makes up less than 18% of the American population!

      As you read my blog, my promise to the readers will be the promise to cite all statistical data and provide factual evidence of the positions I discuss. Some conservatives may accuse me of being too liberal, and some liberals may accuse me of being too conservative. It is my hope to share my moderate positions to promote real substantive discussion and to rally the 80% of Americans who are sick and tired of hyper-partisan politics. It is my belief that there is much less space between the parties than congress would have you believe, and it’s time the real voting public made their voices known.

      Our first step is to focus on commonalities and come to compromise on something. Let’s start with the economy. If voters could put the most polarizing issues on hold while we come to agreement on other issues our congress would likely begin moving forward. Like many people in this country, the economy is and should be the central issue of the 2012 election. While the Republicans have one economic view point and the Democrats have another, it’s clear that there is a much greater chance of economic compromise than social.

      I struggle with this topic regularly. Which economic policy is better? The conservative approach or the liberal? While my views are sometimes a mixed combination of both, I’d like to try to put some things in perpective…..

      America is no different than any American family that struggles to pay its bills. Like many families, America is in SEVERE debt, has a lack of sufficient income, while at the same time needing to care for sick and elderly “family members.” Historically I’ve considered myself a bit of a fiscally conservative socially liberal hybrid. However over the past few years of recession I’ve seen what many families are going though. Circling back to my “American family” analogy, what would YOU do if you didn’t have enough money to pay your mortgage, put food on the table, and take care of your children? Most of us who are lucky enough to have a credit card, would most likely tap into that as a matter of taking care of your family, right? Do we know it’s not smart to go into debt? OF COURSE! But is debt better than malnurished sons or daughters and the threat of homelessness? OF COURSE!

      This is what I think about when debating in my own mind which economic policy is best for America right now. Like the hypothetical family I mentioned, America is in the same boat. Do we know more debt is bad? OF COURSE! But, if certain programs are cut, would massive poverty, homelessness, and malnutrition be a better long term option for the future of the American economy? I’m not so sure about that. What many of us fail to realize is that many of the people in the country do rely on Medicare to survive, do rely on food stamps to eat, and do rely on unemployment checks to take care of their families.

      So what is the answer? Perhaps I’m the first blogger to admittedly not know, but the question remains, is this country much different than that American family relying on debt and credit to survive? For now that is clearly yes. Fortunately the United States has much greater access to credit than the typical American family, and it is increasingly my opinion that we need to strategically continue to support the people in need while putting forth every possible economic initiative to stimulate economic growth and reduce reckless spending. No amount of cost cutting will come close to paying off our debt compared to 10% GDP growth!

      With that being said, what can we cut? Medicare? Defense? Social Security? None of them seem to be making any drastic changes any time soon so, again, this leaves only one savior….. ECONOMIC GROWTH!

      Join with me as I continue to focus more on economic solutions and less on polarizing social differences that will always end in stalemate.

      Signed,

      80percenter

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