Just like every great debate in American history, the time-honored “Was America founded as a Christian nation?” question has reared its ugly head yet again.
Those in support of this concept state that the image of Jesus ought to be permitted in public schools because of America’s roots.
I would recommend that these individuals take a deeper look into the beliefs of the Founding Fathers.
Those who commonly cite George Washington, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the first three presidents, and claim that they were deeply devout Christians whose actions were to a large degree inspired by their faith are severely misguided.
For example: Washington never attended communion services at his church and took great pains to refer to his God by deistic terms such as “Great Author” and “Almighty Being” in his inaugural address.
Jefferson’s deistic convictions are evident from his writings, and he was a high-profile critic of established Christian dogma.
Jefferson even wrote his own version of the New Testament, the Jefferson Bible, expunging the Gospels of all references to the supernatural.
While Adams credited religion in general with bolstering public morality, he consistently argued that the United States had been founded on rationalist and Enlightenment principles and rejected the notion of divine legitimation for political leadership.
Those interested should read The Religious Beliefs of America’s Founders: Reason, Revelation and Revolution by Gregg Frazer.
I will point out though, that saying all religion is bad is a clear logical fallacy. The church does do an assortment of good things to help in the local community.
However, because schools are a public institution and are funded by tax dollars from Christians, Hindus, Muslims, Jews and atheists alike, there cannot be preferential treatment or the promotion of a single religion via a graphic representation of the deity of one particular religion.
That is the law. It is not debatable.
The same people who advocate for this picture to remain would likely be up in armed protest if a teacher were to post a picture of Odin the All-father, Shiva the Destroyer or the Buddha in order to elicit feelings of shame, guilt or remorse in students.
I certainly wouldn’t want my child to feel like Ra the Sun God didn’t think too fondly of his behavior.
Paved with too much debt
Gov. John Kasich is choosing to follow the de facto GOP standard again to spend now and pay later, hoping the Democrats are in office when the bills come due.
He is going to have Ohio issue bonds, which must be paid back, for road construction. The bonds would be backed by toll increases on the Ohio Turnpike.
A proposed rate freeze for local drivers making short trips would expire in 10 years.
In 10 years, the new construction will have deteriorated enough that much of it will need to be replaced, anyway, effectively increasing the cost when we have to pay for both the replacement construction and the remaining interest and principle of the bonds.
Yes, Ohio needs to repair its infrastructure, and we should be doing it while interest rates are low.
But to gain financially, these improvements should be paid off as soon as possible.
Who knows what the economy will be like in 10 years?
We know that our economy today is growing and, most likely, within a couple years, will be strong.
That is the time we should be tapping the strong revenue in Ohio to pay down this debt, not years from now. These expenditures should be paid for soon, not after Kasich and his pals retire.
Complications of drug legalization
I read with interest the Feb. 7 article, “War on drugs criticized.” Peter Christ, a retired police officer, made only one point that was significant to me: Making drugs legal would take the money away from the so-called drug cartel.
The flip side of the coin is the damage that would be caused to families of legal drug addicts. Have no doubt about it, there will be more addicts than ever before.
What is needed is a simple and sure way to treat drug addicts and, while we are at it, alcoholics.
The problem still will be that people under the influence of these substances will commit crimes and slow down the criminal-justice system.
The criminals who sell drugs will find an illegal manner to meet their needs, as they are never going to work for a living.
Gerald C. Wise
At cross-purposes in fighting al-Qaida
In one place, we’re supporting the French, who are fighting al-Qaida to stop them from taking over Mali.
In another place, we’re supporting al-Qaida members who are fighting to take over Syria.
And we’re going to stop terrorism?
You would think our leaders would have a brain cell among them.
Benghazi didn’t happen in a vacuum. There was a reason for the attack. No member of Congress at Hillary Clinton’s testimony asked the hard questions on the underlying reason: gunrunning by our government.
Guns are being shipped from Libya to Turkey and slipped across the border to support the Syrian rebels, who include al-Qaida.
Why are we involving ourselves in these lose-lose situations?
No dealing with Obama
The president isn’t in any mood to deal. He has a simple message to the Republicans in Congress: Do it my way.
The Feb. 13 letter, “Choose consensus,” blames Republicans for not picking areas of consensus.
How can you pick areas of consensus with a bullheaded individual who says he is going to do it his way and is in no mood to deal?
President Obama showed the same bullheadedness when he ignored the prime minister of Israel when he did not get his way.