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Voice: The evidence shows this was not founded as a ‘Christian nation'

June 14, 2002

At the request of Ray Rose, I investigated some American history in order to discover our Christian heritage. I found the Treaty of Tripoli of 1797, which in part states that "as the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion. …" This treaty was passed unanimously by the Senate, signed into law by John Adams and printed in some newspapers of the day to no great upheaval.

Some people would like to see our government promote Christianity, but why would we want this to happen? So that politicians can sing "God Bless America" in order to gain the reputation of being just while in private being unjust? So that officials can pervert Scripture in order to justify their own prejudices, to appear wise when they are not? Or is it that the claims of some people's version of Christianity cannot pass scrutiny, and so school children must be intimidated at a young age into pretending they believe those claims?

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Others believe that our nation suffers because it has fallen into sin, God has sent us a wake-up call. I do not believe in a God that rewards those who do good while punishes those who do evil, or at least one who would tell us he does. I think that any deity would know that to follow good is its own benefit and to follow evil is its own injury. Moreover, I do not believe in a God that would let a person exist in a place where good is nowhere present. At least no loving God could do such things.

But how do we know that what the God instructs to us is good? Well, exactly how we find out what is good if the God does not even exist. We test those claims, using reason to independently verify that we have been told the truth. For as Thomas Jefferson said, "Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear."

LEOBARDO ROSALES

Holtville

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