Here in the United States of America we are supposed to have Freedom of Religion. But I ask you: How can we have freedom of religion without having freedom from religion? How can you have the freedom to practice your personal religious beliefs if you must adhere to governmental laws that are based on the beliefs of any one religion?
The whole Christmas, Virgin Mary, Baby Jesus, Three Wise Men, no room at the inn, manger in a stable, star in the East thing is all about the Christians. This is their tale, their “shining star,” so to speak.
What if you don’t happen to believe in any of those things? Does that make you less of an American citizen, and a person out to ruin America and take away “traditional” America like some television pundits would have you believe?
No, it most surely does not.
For me, it’s real simple. Real religious liberty means that religious freedom must exist for every single American, not just for the sect of conservative Christians who are trying their best to influence our government and have their beliefs be the law of the land. You cannot have one religion in a country of hundreds of religions making the laws – that isn’t freedom on any level – that’s a theocracy.
The whole “freedom from religion” thing is not nut-bags claiming they don’t want to have to see churches or crosses or Nativity scenes or whatever religious expression might rub then the wrong way. Freedom from religion means that I should be able to live my life free from the rules, laws and principles of other people’s religious beliefs. I should be free to follow my own heart and conscience, and I should be able to do it without the fear of being demonized for it. This indeed would be freedom of religion and freedom from religion at its best.
For those of you who say that the words “separation of church and state” are found nowhere in the First Amendment, thus there is not separation of church and state – let’s consider that the words “religious freedom” are not in the First Amendment either. Does this mean that the First Amendment doesn’t guarantee religious freedom? No, of course it doesn’t. On that same train of thought: How can you have religious freedom without separating the church from the state?
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof …”
There is no “war on Christmas.” There is no “war on Christians.”
Why can’t we just let people be?
Barb Hamp Weicksel was born in 1952 in Pennsylvania and moved to California in the early 1980s, where she met her partner Susan. They've been together some 30 years and share the love of Susan's four children, nine grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Her blog, Barb's Gift of Gab," can be found HERE.