I'm from Missouri

This site is named for the famous statement of US Congressman Willard Duncan Vandiver from Missouri : "I`m from Missouri -- you'll have to show me." This site is dedicated to skepticism of official dogma in all subjects. Just-so stories are not accepted here. This is a site where controversial subjects such as evolution theory and the Holocaust may be freely debated.

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

My biggest motivation for creating my own blogs was to avoid the arbitrary censorship practiced by other blogs and various other Internet forums. Censorship will be avoided in my blogs -- there will be no deletion of comments, no closing of comment threads, no holding up of comments for moderation, and no commenter registration hassles. Comments containing nothing but insults and/or ad hominem attacks are discouraged. My non-response to a particular comment should not be interpreted as agreement, approval, or inability to answer.

Friday, May 21, 2010

What is so great about "separation of church and state"?

I was once a strong supporter of the so-called separation of church and state, as codified in the establishment clause of the Constitution. No more -- the Kitzmiller v. Dover decision has turned me against this clause. If it was just a matter of a single crackpot activist judge, I could overlook this decision, but I am disturbed by the widespread praise the decision and its author, Judge John E. Jones III, have received. Judge Jones has received all kinds of honors and awards (including honorary degrees), just as a result of this single decision.

In a Dickinson College commencement speech, Judge Jones said that his Kitzmiller decision was based on his cockamamie notion that the Founders based the establishment clause upon a belief that organized religions are not "true" religions -- he said,
.
. . . . . this much is very clear. The Founders believed that true religion was not something handed down by a church or contained in a Bible, but was to be found through free, rational inquiry. At bottom then, this core set of beliefs led the Founders, who constantly engaged and questioned things, to secure their idea of religious freedom by barring any alliance between church and state.

There is no way that the above statement can be derived from the establishment clause, which says simply, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion."

He also arbitrarily ruled in Kitzmiller v. Dover, "ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents." This is like Adolf Hitler saying that people with Jewish ancestors cannot uncouple themselves from their Jewish ancestry. Judge Jones is the poster boy of crackpot activist judges.

I am also greatly disturbed by the widespread praise that his supporters -- e.g., Eugenie Scott, director of the National Center for Science Education -- have received (Scott has already received eight honorary degrees).

The establishment clause is one of the main reasons why Darwinists -- even if they know better -- insist that all criticisms of evolution are based on religion.

If the price of the establishment clause is the suppression of scientific (or pseudoscientific) criticisms of evolution in the public schools, I feel that price is too high, regardless of what benefits the establishment clause might have, which are not many. And proponents of the clause often use biased, one-sided examples to illustrate the supposed benefits of the clause, e.g., they cite the Taliban and the religious police of Saudi Arabia, but ignore the fact that Great Britain, for example, has a state religion. Yet are the British less free than we are? Indeed, with respect to the freedom to criticize evolution in the public schools, they are more free than we are. The proponents of the clause must often go back to the Middle Ages to find examples -- e.g., the Crusades and the Inquisition -- of the disadvantages of the establishment of a state religion The atheists and agnostics have claimed Thomas Jefferson as one of their own, but the inscriptions of Jefferson quotes on the Jefferson Memorial are full of religious statements.

And the establishment clause does nothing to fight some of the greatest religious scourges of our time, Islamofascism, Islamoterrorism, and Zionist imperialism.

Of course, the chances of the establishment clause ever being repealed are virtually nil -- constitutional amendments, even trivial ones, are very rare, and the Bill of Rights, of which the establishment clause is a part, has never been amended. So, in the hope of helping to prevent future Dover decisions, the only thing I can do is to oppose all establishment clause lawsuits, regardless of their individual merits. So far as my support of the establishment clause is concerned, the supporters of the Dover deicision have killed the goose that laid the golden eggs.

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25 Comments:

Blogger gary said...

Speaking on behalf of Dover supporters, we will get by without your support. Personally I don't care what your religious views are, just keep them out of the public schools and court rooms.

Saturday, May 22, 2010 2:19:00 PM  
Blogger Rupert said...

'ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents.' is a true and accurate statement. Can you prove otherwise?
The rest of your article sounds like a child whinging because they can't get their own way.

Sunday, May 23, 2010 6:04:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Rupert said...
>>>>>>> 'ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents.' is a true and accurate statement. Can you prove otherwise? <<<<<<<

It is a matter of personal opinion, doofus -- it is not something that can be proven one way or the other.

>>>>>> The rest of your article sounds like a child whinging because they can't get their own way. <<<<<<

So we are supposed to roll over and play dead because of a decision by some crackpot activist judge, you stupid dunghill.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010 12:40:00 PM  
Blogger Rupert said...

I have never yet seen an IDer claim anything in place of their denials of evolutionary law - 'it's just that evolution is wrong, but I'm not offering an alternative - really'.

And all ID information has been shown to be rehashed creationist propaganda. So it's a bit more than opinion knucklehead.

There is, was and always will be, an intent to separate church and state. You don't like that so your complaint is against truth and that makes it a whinge, dropkick.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010 7:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

Don't like separation of church and state? Move to Iran. Or Israel since you can tell the Jewish people of your wonderful opinions on the Holocaust right in their faces.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 5:40:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

Preaching Darwinism in a public classroom as alleged "science" is clearly a violation of the First Amendment right to free exercise of religion, at least if all evidence-based objections to the Darwinist hypothesis are not mentioned by the teacher. Darwinism, by which I mean the claim that all species originated by perfectly mindless, mechanistic causes, is a position based upon faith in materialist philosophies: it isn't supported by any decent scientific evidence. It's unfortunate that the courts have done nothing to protect the free exercise of religion; indoctrinating children in the Darwinist faith clearly abridges that right, whenever the children or their parents are not devotees of Darwinism.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 5:41:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Bob the Bastard barfed,
>>>>>> Don't like separation of church and state? Move to Iran. Or Israel since you can tell the Jewish people of your wonderful opinions on the Holocaust right in their faces. <<<<<<

What in hell does the Holocaust have to do with separation of church and state, doofus? Do you think that the Holocaust was a Christian crusade?

Thursday, May 27, 2010 11:50:00 AM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

"Separation of church and state" is a doctrine not found in the First Amendment: instead, it bars the "establishment of a religion." One big difference is that a religion may be any doctrine about the supposed nature of "ultimate reality." Thus philosophical materialism, which claims that what is ultimately real is something somehow perfectly stupid or mindless, seems to be a religion (although a very crude one.) The courts have, I understand, ruled that atheism is a religion. The real problem is the intrusion of philosophical materialism and its "creation story," Darwinism, into the schools: which seems to violate the First Amendment.

But philosophical materialism isn't exactly a "church." Hence materialists strive to re-interpret the First Amendment as merely "separation of church and state."

Thursday, May 27, 2010 2:44:00 PM  
Blogger Rupert said...

Nice try Jim, maybe your denialist god-bot drivel will be approved of by other god-bots but certainly no-one of rational thought.
Must try harder!

Thursday, May 27, 2010 3:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

You truly are a curious individual, Larry. Incapable of telling a lighthearted jab from a coherent argument point. To get back to the matter at hand, have you seen the type of society which results in countries where there is no separation of church and state? Do you want to open the doors to the possibility that one day, there will be a law that essentially forces all citizens to follow a specific religion, and promises severe consequences for those who renounce or convert away from the official state religion?

Also, one of the earliest steps in the founding of America was initiated by one of the many consequence which will result from removing separation of church and state: the Mayflower. The collaboration of the English church and government to systematically oppress and deny religious expression of the Puritans was one of the major reasons why they left.

Thursday, May 27, 2010 5:38:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

Praise for Jones comes mainly from people who, like Jones himself, are old-fashioned and unaware enough to assume that Darwinism is some sort of genuine, experimentally confirmed science. A great many were taught to believe in Darwinism in the 20th century; I also long believed in it. Old, customary ideas only change slowly, and the debunking of Darwinist dogma necessarily takes a long time. Similarly, the Marxist dogma only declined gradually, in the old Soviet Empire.

Thursday, May 27, 2010 5:52:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Bob the Bastard barfed,
>>>>>>> You truly are a curious individual, Larry. Incapable of telling a lighthearted jab from a coherent argument point. <<<<<<<

Trying to relate the Holocaust to "separation of church and state" was a "lighthearted jab"?

>>>>> To get back to the matter at hand, have you seen the type of society which results in countries where there is no separation of church and state? <<<<<<<

You missed my point, doofus, that different kinds of societies can result from having state religions. My opening post said,

proponents of the clause often use biased, one-sided examples to illustrate the supposed benefits of the clause, e.g., they cite the Taliban and the religious police of Saudi Arabia, but ignore the fact that Great Britain, for example, has a state religion. Yet are the British less free than we are? Indeed, with respect to the freedom to criticize evolution in the public schools, they are more free than we are.

>>>>>> Do you want to open the doors to the possibility that one day, there will be a law that essentially forces all citizens to follow a specific religion, and promises severe consequences for those who renounce or convert away from the official state religion? <<<<<<

I pointed out, bozo, that "separation of church and state" can result in societies that deny freedom of expression and thought. My original post said,

If the price of the establishment clause is the suppression of scientific (or pseudoscientific) criticisms of evolution in the public schools, I feel that price is too high, regardless of what benefits the establishment clause might have, which are not many.

Friday, May 28, 2010 10:11:00 AM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

And therein lies the hypocrisy (again). I'm sure it was very convenient for you to forget that there was a time in many US states were it was ILLEGAL to teach evolution in ? The most infamous was Butler Act of 1925 specifically prohibited the teaching of evolution as applied to humans in Tennessee, and specifically stated that only the biblical account of man's origins may be taught?


If the price of the establishment clause is the suppression of scientific (or pseudoscientific) criticisms of evolution in the public schools, I feel that price is too high, regardless of what benefits the establishment clause might have, which are not many.


As we saw in Scopes, the price of having no (or a poorly-enforced) establishment clause means the suppression of all science which challenges the Judeo-Christian worldview. What say you about this price? Do you find too high as well, or do you complacently accept it since it happens to promote your own archaic religious beliefs?

Also Jim:
Is this the best you can do, spouting baseless talking points in a "big-lie"-esque manner? You can keep repeating lies and disinformation over and over again, but as they say in programming: Garbage in, garbage out.

Friday, May 28, 2010 10:54:00 AM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Bob the Bastard barfed,
>>>>> I'm sure it was very convenient for you to forget that there was a time in many US states were it was ILLEGAL to teach evolution in ? <<<<<<

Where did I imply that I had forgotten that, bozo? And what do you mean by "many US states"? Only four states ever had such laws on the books -- see this blog post.

>>>>>> As we saw in Scopes, the price of having no (or a poorly-enforced) establishment clause means the suppression of all science which challenges the Judeo-Christian worldview. <<<<<<

Great Britain has no establishment clause and in fact has an official state religion, yet evolution is taught in government-supported British schools.

Friday, May 28, 2010 11:50:00 AM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

Tsk tsk, avoiding the question and attempting to derail as usual when caught in contradiction. In case you haven't figured it out, this establishment clause debate you initiated has nothing to do with Britain. Who cares how they did without the an establishment clause?

It also appears irony and sarcasm escape you. Assuming you didn't forget, how convenient it must be for you to make a case against the establishment clause over suppression in light of the fact that we have seen just what kinds of scientific suppression are possible with a poorly-enforced establishment clause a la Scopes.

I ask again: Is the suppression of science under no or a poorly-enforced establishment clause not a high price to pay as well?

Friday, May 28, 2010 2:11:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

Darwin himself was essentially a religious prophet, of a crude sort: a prophet of the philosophical materialist faith, the faith which became the established religion of the brutal Marxist dictatorships of the 20th century.

Darwinism isn't really science, since no experiments exist which can confirm its central claim, which is that all life emerged by perfectly mindless, mechanical processes. There are no experiments which can confirm that claim as even probably true. Hence as an alleged scientist, Darwin was a complete failure. And his doctrines are being rather rapidly discredited.

As a prophet of the materialist faith, Darwin was very influential. But the effects of his philosophical or religious dogmas on history and on human social life, were disastrous.

Saturday, May 29, 2010 5:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Michael said...

Larry said, "Great Britain has no establishment clause and in fact has an official state religion, yet evolution is taught in government-supported British schools."

Bob replies, "I ask again: Is the suppression of science under no or a poorly-enforced establishment clause not a high price to pay as well?"

Darwinian Evolution has been elevated to cult-like status for many years. Bob shows this by running around the Britain answer so he can hide behind the mantra from certain followers of evolution.

Jefferson's letter in which separation of church and state was based on, had to deal only with establishing a state religion. How does one establish a state religion? By teaching there are other views to science besides evolution? Answer: No!

The same messed up crowd who believes that's how you establish a religion are the same ones who claim the Declaration of Independence is a legal document to govern the US (because it mentions the supernatural). John Quincy Adams (6th President) used the Declaration of Independence in the Supreme Court case involving the Amistad (1841).

If anyone should know if was a legal or not, John Quincy Adams sure knew!

Separation of Church and State wasn't meant for public schools to shun Christianity or religions in general!

Monday, May 31, 2010 7:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

Whatever, puppet. Both you and Jim keep repeating the same no-content BS over and over. Dr. Goebbels would be proud that his propaganda methods survive even to this day.

I ignore the Britain references because here in the USA, the suppression of science DID happen in several states due to a poorly enforced establishment clause, hence why Britain's lack of an establishment clause is not relevant. We'd also be dealing with completely different demographics, governments, cultural values, etc, not to mention Darwin himself being a sort of celebrity back in his native England for his work on evolution and many other scientific discoveries and expeditions. Bringing up Britain is nothing more than a straw-man argument. I don't have to hide from that.

Both of you puppets (and of course, you Larry) still fail to answer the hypocrisy that the perceived suppression of "science" under an establishment clause is justification enough to repeal it, when history has already shown us the kind of (actual) scientific suppression which have resulted from gross encroachment of religion into public institutions like schools and such.

Funny you should bring up John Q. Adams, a man who was quoted to say such gems as

"God is an essence that we know nothing of. Until this awful blasphemy is got rid of, there never will be any liberal science in the world."

"The government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion."

"The divinity of Jesus is made a convenient cover for absurdity."

and numerous other atheistic quotes which were critical of the Christian influences in government at the time.

As with your humorous selections for "Friends of Jefferson" award fiasco, how will you crawl out of this one, Larry?

Tuesday, June 01, 2010 5:42:00 PM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

Also, Jim, I find it funny that you would even mention "materialist faith" when it is well documented that this recent surge of Christian fundamentalism in the mid 20th century (such as our favorite, biblical literalism)is essentially a death rattle to the growing materialism that has consumed most of Christianity, from greedy and lecherous televangelists and their blasphemous gospels of wealth, entire congregations reduced to mere political pawns, oblivious to the fact that their support is being used by politicians for measures and initiatives which directly conflict with Christian values, to the multi-million dollar mega-churches with a freakin Starbucks right in the lobby. And after all this, you have the gall to label others as "materialist faiths"? Ha!

Tuesday, June 01, 2010 5:56:00 PM  
Blogger Larry Fafarman said...

Bob the Bastard is a troll and I am not going to feed him.

I would like to add that many establishment-clause lawsuits basically just involve a "right to not be offended." I don't think that is a very important right.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010 11:34:00 AM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

More like unable to answer due to obvious logical flaw that you only realized when I pointed it out to you.

You are right Larry. To you, I am a troll. I disagree with your twisted views. I can argue coherently as to why your position is flawed. I point out the obvious contradictions to your arguments. To you, everyone who can effectively argue against the variety of retarded interpretations and stances you take on current issues is a troll.

But the kicker is, what do you expect when you've effectively put up a giant sign pointing to your blog that says "ALL TROLLS WELCOME!!!" with all the trolling YOU'VE done on wiki and other blogs? Loser.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010 12:13:00 PM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

And to play the Jim Sherwood non-sequitur blurb:

The role of American Christian missionaries in the recent upsurge of death sentences and executions of homosexuals in Uganda is a testament to the disturbing lengths that Christian fundamentalist will go to impose their twisted values on others. In their blind push to spread their moral values across Africa, they have caused a frenzy of attacks and legislated persecution against gays, leading to the legal torture and execution of hundreds under draconian anti-sodomy laws, some of which written with direct input from the missionaries themselves. Even when the reality of the deaths they have caused was exposed, most remain silent, closing their eyes, ears, and reassuring themselves that the blood spilled by their hands are for some twisted greater good.

http://current.com/shows/vanguard/92438541_missionaries-of-hate-pt-1.htm

The irony here, Jim, is that while you continue to link crimes against humanity such as Hitler's holocaust and Stalin's totalitarianism to Darwin, (however dubious and absent in actual evidence) you seem to conveniently ignore the fact that Christian fundamentalism is leading to the legally-sanctioned slaughter of people in Africa over sexual orientation. Last time I checked, that to is a crime against humanity. But I suppose in your twisted little mind, that too is acceptable if it's done in the name of God, amiright? Both you and Larry got this hypocrite thing nailed down hard.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010 11:44:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

Philip Skell, a member of the National Academy of Science, was once a believer in the usual Darwinist doctrine. Since his retirement as a university professor, he has become moderately skeptical of Darwinism.

"I do not have the position," Skell said in an interview, "or hold the position, that Darwinist theory is incorrect, or correct. I think there is no good way to make that decision." A perfectly rational view. But not according to Darwin-fans, who habitually cry that Skell must be a "creationist."

It seems that they don't know that there are plently of biologists who are even philosophical materialists; and who nevertheless question or reject Darwinism.

How can one talk to these fanatical Darwinists?

Thursday, June 03, 2010 1:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Bob the Bastard said...

Oh snap Jim! Maybe you should get your facts straight. For one, Skell isn't a biologist. Two, he isn't even a biochemist, as the Discovery Institute have attempted to present him. Phillip Skell is a professor of Chemistry, specializing in organic and organometallic synthesis and the like.

He is just another in the long list of dentists, chemists, people named "Steve", bus drivers, carpenters, and other non-biology "experts" who may have an opinion against the validity of evolution, but otherwise, have no actual authority nor scientific credentials to support their position.

Feel free to take another try at it, Jim, but do make sure all the nuts and bolts on your propaganda machine are properly tightened first.

Thursday, June 03, 2010 5:22:00 PM  
Blogger Jim Sherwood said...

This is a bit off-topic, but I'd like to remind all rational thinkers that the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture has been instrumental in informing the world about new views in biology which challenge the old dogmas of the Official Darwinist/Materialist Establishment. They've been doing that good work for decades. Read recent CSC articles by James LeFanu and Richard Sternberg, for instance, to get a feel for the exciting stuff that's going on.

CSC is a private, underfunded nonprofit that always needs contributions. I think I'll be able to pony up $300, and become a member of the Discovery Society. I hope that a lot of people will do likewise.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010 5:45:00 PM  

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