The First Amendment prevents the federal government from dictating a particular religion. It does not outlaw religion from the public square, in spite of the decisions of activist judges.

TRACKSIDE © by John D’Aloia Jr.

December 3, 2002

It was fit and proper on Thanksgiving for us as a nation to give Thanks to Almighty God for our country, our freedom, and yes, even our prosperity. Whether it is a simple and to the point expression of our belief and duty - "Praise God from Whom all blessings flow" - or the extended oratory of public figures, only when we acknowledge and do homage to God will we have any hope of continuing to enjoy freedom. The Founders understood and recognized this. For them, religion was an integral and necessary part of both private and public life. Consider the Thanksgiving Day proclamation authorized by Congress and pronounced by President George Washington on October 3, 1789, in New York City.

"Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and

Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me ‘to recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness’:

"Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the Beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted; for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

"And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions, to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually, to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed, to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shown kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord. To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us, and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best."

Nothing has changed since 1789 as to what our nation’s relationship to God should be, yet today, people would be racing to the nearest TV camera to denounce such a statement by a president in all the shrill, irrational rhetoric that can be mustered by the politically correct to whom God and His Law are obstacles to their worldly pleasures and pursuit of power. Wildly waving the First Amendment and mis-citing Jefferson’s wall-of-separation letter, they attempt to smother our nation’s founding relationship to God and brain-wash society into believing their secular tenets. The First Amendment prevents the federal government from dictating a particular religion. It does not outlaw religion from the public square, in spite of the decisions of activist judges. Those who reject God and do everything they can to eject him from our public and private lives have twisted the meaning and intent of the First Amendment into laws and dictates that would be unrecognizable to the Founders. If we really are serious about maintaining a political system established to give people liberty, we as a nation had best return to our foundations and rededicate our nation and ourselves to God. The alternative is a devolution to any one of the tyrannies that will overtake us, a Hell on earth.

See you Trackside.


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