Sunday, September 20, 2015

Greatest Threat to Freedom of Religion

No, it's not any "sinning" that threatens Constitutional order. It's people who classify who is and who is not "religiously qualified" under our Constitutional system. Hint: Read the Constitution, Article VI, Clause 3:
no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.
Republican Presidential Candidate Ben Carson just blew that test. He doesn't think a Muslim would qualify to be President under the Constitution:
Asked whether his faith or the faith of a president should matter, Carson said, "It depends on what that faith is."
"If it's inconsistent with the values and principles of America, then of course it should matter. But if it fits within the realm of America and consistent with the constitution, no problem," he explained, according to a transcript.
Todd then asked Carson, whose rise in the polls has been powered in large part by Christian conservatives, if he believed that "Islam is consistent with the Constitution." 
"No, I don't, I do not," he responded, adding, "I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that."

Read more:
Ben Carson is a favorite of many religious people without realizing that this type of thinking is a much greater threat to religious freedom than any other.

Read the Constitution. Think about it.


  1. I think it important to remember that the Constitution establishes the government and it's prescriptions and proscriptions apply only to those entities acting under the authority of the government of the United States of America, including, where applicable, state and local governments. Therefore, the government, or it's officials, cannot require any type of religious test as part of the qualifications for office. Chief Justice Roberts could not refuse to administer the oath of office to, or the Supreme Court could not forbid from taking his/her seat, a duly elected President on the grounds that the President-elect had not renounced previously proclaimed Buddhist beliefs. Neither can congress pass a law or rule preventing a member from taking his/her seat while professing belief in Scientology.

    Individual voters voting or people expressing an opinion on what is "good for the nation" is, however, not constrained by such tests. The article referenced doesn't really delve into what Mr. Carson believes the Constitution means under this clause, nor would what he believes matter much seeing as he has not been appointed a justice of the Supreme Court. He only responded to whether he believed :Islam is consistent with the Constitution." If, as many, unfortunately, do, he is operating under misunderstandings about what Islam teaches, or if he is only operating under the understanding that groups like ISIS are the natural result of Islamic beliefs, then it is not such a far cry to say that Islam is not consistent with the Constitution. He goes on to advocate that no Muslim be in charge of the nation which is his opinion, and probably his eventual vote, should such a choice be presented, and there is nothing unconstitutional about such things; indeed such beliefs and actions are wholly outside the scope of the constitution.

    All this said - I keep waiting for somebody, anybody, on either side of the aisle or from any party, to step forward and be a sensible individual that doesn't have excessive lunacy stamped all over him/her, or that doesn't feel the need to embrace the extremes edges of their respective parties without even attempting to temper the extreme views (Romney's approach looks absolutely timid towards the far right compared to today's lunacy). Is Carson an idiot for ruling out a Muslim candidate based solely on religion? Sure. Is it unconstitutional? Nah. Could he do anything about it if a Muslim were elected President? Not while remaining within the bounds of the law, except, perhaps, attempting to pass a new amendment to the Constitution...good luck with that...

    1. Thanks, Dale. You're absolutely right that this applies to government action and Carson is entitled to his personal and religious views that are not in technical violation of and actually protected by the Constitution. I just maintain that such views are dangerous to the maintenance of constitutional principles. And I wouldn't want a President with such beliefs.


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