John McCain, presidential candidate, during the Saddleback Church forum sponsored and hosted by Reverend Rick Warren, stated that America was founded on Christian principles. It seems Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and our other Founding Fathers disagree with John McCain, and for good reason.
Prior to 1787, state laws were already on the books which required elected officials to believe in God or be a member of certain churches. The Founding Fathers remedied this in our Constitution and set America on a path which has served our national security well by allowing our citizens and organizations to prosper through protection of diversity and freedom of thought. In their far reaching wisdom, they created for us a nation neither beholden nor accountable to any god.
Article VI: Clause 3 of the Constitution of the United States of America states as follows:
The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.
Our Bill of Rights took this even further:
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to
petition the government for a redress of grievances."
Thomas Jefferson on the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, the precursor to the First Amendment:
"Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed by inserting "Jesus Christ," so that it would read "A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion;" the insertion was rejected by the great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination."
Jefferson also referred to the First Amendment directly as a "wall of separation between church and State."
Not ten years hence, in the Treaty of Tripoli, John Adams stated:
"As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Musselmen; and as the
said States never have entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony
existing between the two countries."
Thomas Jefferson, along with our other Founding Fathers understood full well that if we allow any one religion to become the law of the land that any religion could do the same. John McCain's failure or refusal to see this is a national security issue, one that men far wiser than he foresaw over two hundred years ago.