frame

Should "God" play a role in United States politics?

Opening Argument

Should religion play a part in goverment?
  1. Should "God" play a role in United States politics?

    10 votes
    1. Yes, we need religion
      30.00%
    2. No
      70.00%
    3. I don't care, I do not live there
        0.00%

Status: Open Debate


Arguments

  • There is a specific reason why we are a secular government in the first place. That reason is because, if we were to say "Religion should have a place in government", then people will ask which one. Then my dear readers, we will have large amounts of bloodshed over which one's religion gets to be on top. Secular, is what a government must be, if it wants to keep its citizens from clawing at each other's throats. Secular Government in short = A safe and fair government. 
    BaconToesPogueDrCerealSkepticalOne
  • There is a specific reason why we are a secular government in the first place. That reason is because, if we were to say "Religion should have a place in government", then people will ask which one. Then my dear readers, we will have large amounts of bloodshed over which one's religion gets to be on top. Secular, is what a government must be, if it wants to keep its citizens from clawing at each other's throats. Secular Government in short = A safe and fair government. 
    Although it might not entirely be safe or fair, it would help.
  • VaulkVaulk 289 Pts

    The U.S. Government is not secular:

    Secular: Not connected with religious or spiritual matters.

    ‘secular buildings’
    Contrasted with sacred


    Cotting v. Godard, in 1901, the Supreme Court makes the case that the Constitution is but the “body and the letter” of the “thought and spirit” of the Declaration’s founding principles:

    The first official action of this nation declared the foundation of government in these words: ‘We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.’ While such declaration of principles may not have the force of organic law, or be made the basis of judicial decision as to the limits of right and duty, and while in all cases reference must be had to the organic law of the nation for such limits, yet the latter is but the body and the letter of which the former is the thought and the spirit, and it is always safe to read the letter of the Constitution in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence. No duty rests more imperatively upon the courts than the enforcement of those constitutional provisions intended to secure that equality of rights which is the foundation of free government.
    https://constitutioncenter.org/blog/republic-found-the-relationship-between-the-declaration-and-constitution

    Above is a perfect example of exactly how the Government is not secular.  The U.S. Supreme Court formally and officially acknowledges that the Constitution of the United States is merely the body and letter of the founding principles of the Declaration of Independence.  Since one of the prominent founding principles established in the Declaration of Independence is the bestowment of the rights to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness by our "Creator"...then the principle that these rights are God given is also formally and officially recognized by the U.S. Supreme Court.  Our Presidents of the United States have formally recognized this publicly many times over.  Our Declaration of Independence also establishes that the U.S. is subject to the "Supreme Judge of the World" and that our independence is completely dependent on "Divine Providence".  

    In short, if the Constitution is the body and letter of the Declaration of Independence (As established by the U.S. Supreme Court in Cotting v. Godard) then the Constitution is to be legally interpreted with respect to the "Supreme Judge of the World" and our "Creator".  Now I suppose you could argue that this doesn't objectively establish which God is being referenced...but understanding who the Founding Fathers worshiped and who was prayed to upon the meeting of the Second Continental Congress...you can easily and safely deduce that it was the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

    The U.S. Government only appears to be secular at the surface...everything underneath is rooted firmly in Christianity and to say otherwise is wishful thinking.
    SkepticalOne
    "If there's no such thing as a stupid question then what kind of questions do stupid people ask"?

    "There's going to be a special place in Hell for people who spread lies through the veil of logical fallacies disguised as rational argument".

    "Oh, you don't like my sarcasm?  Well I don't much appreciate your stupid".


  • I assume the "God" the OP refers to is the Christiam deity. Correct me if wrong.

    The US government is built on the concept of religious freedom (among other things).  If government priveledges one religion over another, then religious freedom of other religious views are infringed. Religious freedom only exists where all religous views are equal in the eyes of the government. 


  • VaulkVaulk 289 Pts
    The U.S. Government is merely the body and letter of the thought and spirit of the Declaration of Independence.  The U.S. Supreme Court holds firmly that the Constitution must be read, interpreted and understood with regards to the Declaration of Independence.  The U.S. Supreme Court also acknowledges that our Free Government is based upon religious principles.

    Also, when the Declaration of Independence was created and also when the 1st Amendment was officially added...the U.S. had multiple State Churches...none of which were removed or dissolved because of the 1st Amendment.
    DrCereal
    "If there's no such thing as a stupid question then what kind of questions do stupid people ask"?

    "There's going to be a special place in Hell for people who spread lies through the veil of logical fallacies disguised as rational argument".

    "Oh, you don't like my sarcasm?  Well I don't much appreciate your stupid".


  • Vaulk said:
    The U.S. Government is merely the body and letter of the thought and spirit of the Declaration of Independence.  The U.S. Supreme Court holds firmly that the Constitution must be read, interpreted and understood with regards to the Declaration of Independence.  The U.S. Supreme Court also acknowledges that our Free Government is based upon religious principles.

    Also, when the Declaration of Independence was created and also when the 1st Amendment was officially added...the U.S. had multiple State Churches...none of which were removed or dissolved because of the 1st Amendment.
    Sources for, "Also, when the Declaration of Independence was created and also when the 1st Amendment was officially added...the U.S. had multiple State Churches...none of which were removed or dissolved because of the 1st Amendment. "?

    Bis das, si cito das.
  • VaulkVaulk 289 Pts
    edited December 16
    @DrCereal

    By the year 1702 all 13 American colonies had some form of state-supported religion. This support varied from tax benefits to religious requirements for voting or serving in the legislature.  The following excerpts with sources will show that State Churches existed, were formally and officially recognized by the States under law and that their existence persisted (In many cases) LONG after the adoption of the 1st Amendment. Documented State supported religions by State with sources:

    For cross referencing, the 1st Amendment to the Constitution of the United States was adopted December 15th, 1791

    1. Virginia
    Official Religion: Anglican/Church of England
    Original Charter Date: Apr. 10,1606
    Full text: The First Charter of Virginia  (PDF) 15.5K
    Ended Support: 1830 
    "Every Person should go to church, Sundays and Holidays, or lye Neck and Heels that Night, and be a Slave to the Colony the following Week; for the second Offence, he should be a Slave for a Month; and for the third, a Year and a Day." 
    Governor Argall's Decree
    1617

    "That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator and the manner of discharging it, can be directed by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore, all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience; and that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity towards each other." 
    Virginia Declaration of Rights
    1776

    2. New York
    Official Religion: Anglican/Church of England
    Original Charter Date: June 7, 1614
    Full text: Charter of the Dutch West India Company  (PDF) 22.8K
    Ended Support: 1846 
    In 1697, although the Anglican Church was never formally established in the Province of New York, Trinity Church was founded in the City of New York by royal charter, and received many civil privileges and the munificent grants of land which are the source of its present great wealth." 

    3. Massachusetts
    Official Religion: Congregational Church
    Original Charter Date: Mar. 4, 1629
    Full text: The Charter of Massachusetts Bay  (PDF) 29.1K
    Ended Support: 1833 
    "Article II. It is the right as well as the duty of all men in society, publicly and at stated seasons, to worship the Supreme Being, the great Creator and Preserver of the universe. And no subject shall be hurt, molested, or restrained, in his person, liberty, or estate, for worshipping God in the manner and season most agreeable to the dictates of his own conscience, or for his religious profession or sentiments. provided he doth not disturb the public peace or obstruct others in their religious worship.
    Massachusetts Constitution
    1780 

    4. Maryland
    Official Religion: Anglican/Church of England
    Original Charter Date: June 20, 1632
    Full text: The Charter of Maryland  (PDF) 22.6K
    Ended Support: 1867
    Article XXXV. That no other test or qualification ought to be required, on admission to any office of trust or profit, than such oath of support and fidelity to this State, and such oath of office, as shall be directed by this Convention or the Legislature of this State, and a declaration of a belief in the Christian religion." 

    5. Delaware
    Official Religion: None
    Original Charter Date: 1637
    Chartered by: South Company of Sweden
    Ended Support: 1792 
    One of the very few states at the time that had no official religion but still officially and formally recognized "Almighty God as the ONLY Lord of Conscience.

    "BECAUSE no People can be truly happy, though under the greatest Enjoyment of Civil Liberties, if abridged of the Freedom of their Consciences, as to their Religious Profession and Worship: And Almighty God being the only Lord of Conscience, Father of Lights and Spirits; and the Author as well as Object of all divine Knowledge, Faith and Worship, who only doth enlighten the Minds, and persuade and convince the Understandings of People, I do hereby grant and declare, That no Person or Persons, inhabiting in this Province or Territories, who shall confess and acknowledge Our almighty God, the Creator, Upholder and Ruler of the world; and professes him or themselves obliged to live quietly under the Civil Government, shall be in any Case molested or prejudiced, in his or their Person or Estate, because of his or their consciencious Persuasion or Practice, nor be compelled to frequent or maintain any religious Worship, Place or Ministry, contrary to his or their Mind, or to do or suffer any other Act or Thing, contrary to their religious Persuasion. 

    AND that all Persons who also profess to believe in Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the World, shall be capable (notwithstanding their other Persuasions and Practices in Point of Conscience and Religion) to serve this Government in any Capacity, both legislatively and executively." 

    Charter of Delaware
    1701

    6. Connecticut
    Official Religion: Congregational Church
    Original Charter Date: Jan. 14, 1639
    Full text: The Fundamental Orders of Connecticut  (PDF) 10.6K
    Ended Support: 1818 
    Article VII. Section 1. It being the duty of all men to worship the Supreme Being, the great Creator and Preserver of the Universe, and their right to render that worship in the mode most consistent with the dictates or their consciences, no person shall by law be compelled to join or support, nor be classed with, or associated to, any congregation, church, or religious association; but every person now belonging to such congregation, church, or religious association, shall remain a member thereof until he shall have separated himself therefrom, in the manner hereinafter provided. And each and every society or denomination of Christians in this State shall have and enjoy the same and equal powers, rights, and privileges; and shall have power and authority support and maintain the ministers or teachers of their respective denominations, and to build and repair houses for public worship by a tax on the members of any such society only, to be laid by a major vote of the legal voters assembled at any society meeting, warned and held according to law, or in any other manner." 
    Connecticut Constitution
    1818 (This was written into state law approximately 27 years AFTER the 1st amendment was adopted)

    7. New Hampshire
    Official Religion: Congregational Church
    Original Charter Date: Aug. 4, 1639
    Full text: Agreement of the Settlers at Exeter in New Hampshire  (PDF) 5.08K 
    Ended Support: 1877 
    Senate. Provided, nevertheless, That no person shall be capable of being elected a senator who is not of the Protestant religion...
    House of Representatives. Every member of the house of representatives... shall be of the Protestant religion...
    President. [H]e shall be of the Protestant religion." 
    New Hampshire Constitution
    1784

    "And be it further enacted, that each religious sect or denomination of Christians in this State may associate and form societies, may admit members, may establish rules and bylaws for their regulation and government, and shall have all the corporate powers which may be necessary to assess and raise money by taxes upon the polls and ratable estate of the members of such associations, and to collect and appropriate the same for the purpose of building and repairing houses of public worship, and for the support of the ministry; and the assessors and collectors of such associations shall have the same powers in assessing and collecting, and shall be liable to the same penalties as similar town officers have and are liable to--Provided that no person shall be compelled to join or support, or be classed with, or associated to any congregation, church or religious society without his express consent first had and obtain--Provided also, if any person shall choose to separate himself from such society, or association to which he may belong, and shall leave a written notice thereof with the clerk of such society or association, he shall thereupon be no longer liable for any future expenses which may be incurred by said society or association--Provided also, that no association or society shall exercise the powers herein granted until it shall have assumed a name and stile by which such society may be known and distinguished in law, and shall have recorded the same in a book of records to be kept by the clerk of said Society, and shall have published the same in some newspaper in the County where such society may be formed if any be printed therein, and if not then in some paper published in some adjoining County." 
    The Toleration Act, Section 3D
    1819

    "House of Representatives. Article 14. Amended 1877 deleting requirement that representatives be Protestants. 
    Senate. Article 29. Amended l877 deleting requirements that senators be Protestant." 
    New Hampshire Constitution
    1990 (OVER 200 years after the 1st Amendment was adopted).  Mind you that this was undone by the State, not the Federal Government.


    The other 6 can be found here: 
    https://undergod.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=000069









    "If there's no such thing as a stupid question then what kind of questions do stupid people ask"?

    "There's going to be a special place in Hell for people who spread lies through the veil of logical fallacies disguised as rational argument".

    "Oh, you don't like my sarcasm?  Well I don't much appreciate your stupid".


  •      I do not think that using religion in politics is a good idea for our country. First of all there are so many different religions and having that much disagreement between people would, in my opinion, lead to more protests and violent shootings and just think about it, our country has seen 2 huge mass shootings within 4 months this year and that is when religion hasn't been involved. For example, if a Christian person were to be voting for somebody who believes in Christianity that would make sense but then when that candidate starts rambling on about God and how he is the greatest person and how everyone should believe in him, think about everyone else that has a different religion like a person that believes in Buddhism might not be happy with all that this candidate is saying so this Buddha person is going to go to a Catholic Church and create a mass shooting. Also, our country is already splitting at the seams with Trump leading it and all of the nuclear bomb threats, talk about World War 3 etc. Imaging if we just added another element for people to disagree over, I don't think it's right for our country no matter how strongly people believe in something. 
  • MikeMike 38 Pts

    I do not know if “God” plays a role in US politics; but what I do know, those who believe in God have a role in US politics. As far as I know, there is no law stating only those who are secular have a role in US politics; if there is, it is unconstitutional.   

    Thomas Jefferson (authored the U.S. Declaration of Independence) included the phrase, “… the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God….” There is little doubt that Jefferson and those of faith, both in his day and today, believed that God, or some Divinity, created the universe and everything in it, including the physical “Laws of Nature,” of which we are a product thereof.  Expanding on this belief, it would be beneficial for those of faith (a formidable segment of the global population) to embrace Jefferson’s subtle point that the laws of nature are the handwriting of God; and therefore, the scientific method is a way to read God’s handwriting. Relative to this induction, those who are scholarly secular should consider the reality that those who believe in Divinity are not going away any time soon, and to wisely use Jefferson’s phrase as a uniting factor in the constructive evolution of civil society by the moral benefits found in diversity of belief in US politics. Hence, freedom of religion.    

    That is, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;…” (clause one of the First Amendment to the US Constitution).

     Therefore, those who have a role in US politics and believe in God, “Congress shall make no law of prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” It is also known, that Congress made “no law respecting an establishment of religion.”

Sign In or Register to comment.

Back To Top

DebateIsland.com | The Best Online Debate Website!

| The Best Online Debate Experience!
2017 DebateIsland.com, All rights reserved. DebateIsland.com | The Best Online Debate Experience! Debate topics you care about in a friendly and fun way. Come try us out now. We are totally free!

Contact us

customerservice@debateisland.com
Awesome Debates
BestDealWins.com
Terms of Service

Get In Touch