Monday, April 6, 2015

In Light Of the RFRA's...

Rational Nation USA
Purveyor of Truth

Given the political right's rush to use religion freedom as a justification to legislate discriminatory practices against individuals and communities their religion disapproves of here are some instructive statements from past American's.

“What influence, in fact, have religious establishments had on society? In some instances they have been seen to erect a spiritual tyranny on the ruins of the civil authority; on many instances they have been seen upholding the thrones of political tyranny; in no instance have they been the guardians of the liberties of the people. Rulers who wish to subvert the public liberty may have found an established clergy convenient auxiliaries. A just government, instituted to secure and perpetuate it, needs them not.” – James Madison

“We have abundant reason to rejoice that in this Land the light of truth and reason has triumphed over the power of bigotry and superstition … In this enlightened Age and in this Land of equal liberty it is our boast, that a man’s religious tenets will not forfeit the protection of the Laws, nor deprive him of the right of attaining and holding the highest Offices that are known in the United States.” — George Washington (letter to the members of the New Church in Baltimore, January 27, 1793

“Strongly guarded as is the separation between Religion and Government in the Constitution of the United States, the danger of encroachment by [Religious] Bodies, may be illustrated by precedents already furnished in history.” – James Madison

“Across the ages, clergy have been interested not in truth but only in wealth and power; when rational people have had difficulty swallowing their impious heresies, then the clergy have, with the help of the state, forced them down their throats.” – Thomas Jefferson

“Experience witnesses that ecclesiastical establishments, instead of maintaining the purity and efficacy of religion, have had a contrary operation. During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What has been its fruits? More or less, in all places, pride and indolence in the clergy; ignorance and servility in the laity; in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution.” – James Madison

Not that the above will change many minds, but it sure as hell ought to get people THINKING

More thoughts from rational men responsible for our founding.


This just in from Associated Press

North Dakota's Republican governor sent a memo to 17 government departments on Monday saying discrimination against anyone is unacceptable, just two hours before every Democrat in the Legislature delivered a letter calling on him to go further and issue an executive order prohibiting bias against gays and lesbians.

Gov. Jack Dalrymple's chief of staff sent the letter to all agency directors appointed by the governor.

"This administration expects all cabinet agencies to hire employees and to maintain agency staff based on ability and performance," Chief of Staff Ron Rauschenberger wrote. "Ours remains a policy of non-discrimination, including no discrimination based on sexual orientation."

All 38 Democrats from the House and Senate delivered a letter to Dalrymple later in the day asking him to issue an executive order to require state agencies to ban discrimination in hiring and employment based on sexual orientation. Democrats are the minority in the Legislature, where Republicans hold two-thirds majorities.

Dalrymple's staff late Monday said such an executive order already exists because the governor last year "reaffirmed and ratified" an order signed by former GOP Gov. Allen Olson in 1981 that mandates all state employees be provided "fair, equitable, and uniform treatment."

Dalrymple spokesman Jeff Zent said "all means all. It doesn't say some."

Kudos to Republican Governor Dalrymple


  1. Thank you for this post. Much needed.

  2. Discrimination against the gay community has dominated headlines recently; but there are other reasons why I have no patience whatsoever for the so-called Religious Freedom movement.

    Some of the worst human rights abuses in history have been committed in the name of religion: Slavery, segregation, discrimination, pogroms, murder, and genocide. Add to this ugly canon of cruelty: Child abuse, misogyny, and spousal abuse.

    Some ultra-fundamentalist denominations openly sanction the corporal punishment of children, resulting in extreme physical abuse, a lack of life-saving medical treatment, starvation, and death. Here is another example:

    Conservative Christian Nightmare Spent in an Abusive Religious Sect:

    Quiverfull women push themselves beyond all reasonable limits to endure extreme circumstances of deprivation, overwhelming workloads, ruined health, emotional overload, and they carry huge burdens of guilt when they can’t keep up with their quiver full of blessings. Because I have been intimately familiar with the Christian fundamentalist woman’s manner of thinking, this martyr mentality makes me feel sick to my stomach. It’s particularly nauseating when you consider that women are knocking themselves down trying to maintain a lifestyle which was manufactured by greedy, controlling men who don’t actually care about the well-being of their wives and children at all.

    There is much more at stake surrounding this controversy than discrimination alone. There are laws on the books that punish child abuse and spousal abuse. Over my dead body will I ever allow such laws to be set aside in the name of “Religious Freedom.”

    There are times when secular law serves the vital interests of a higher moral law - and why I trust government more than religion to protect the health, safety and welfare of its citizens – especially those who are most vulnerable.


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