Saturday, June 29, 2013

Another waste-of-time debate

Today we have yet another letter (this one from Noel Dusek) in the endless and pointless debate over whether the Founders were Xtians. There's nothing new here, again, and as usual the argument is pitched over utterly irrelevant ideas.

The Enlightenment Xtians of the 18th century had very little in common with the deranged evangelicals of today, so it's more than a little silly for today's extremists to cite the professed faith of the signers of the Constitution as proof that the US was meant to be a "Christian nation." But it's also silly to debate them on that ground, because it's completely irrelevant.

Whatever their individual choices of faith, the men who debated and signed the Constitution agreed that there should never be a state religion here. That says conclusively that they put rational governance above their own superstition and understood the value of that. This is, by the way, a hallmark of Enlightenment thought.

Like Mormons reading the obits, evangelicals want to draft the Founders onto their team to support their aspirations to Xtian dominionism and a religious state.

So for gad's sake quit debating whether the Founders were deists or whatever. We have the document that they hammered out and agreed on. We know them by their fruits.

No comments: