Constitutional Silence on Church-State Separation

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), November 29, 1998 | Go to article overview

Constitutional Silence on Church-State Separation


Liberals speak of the separation of church and state, but that language does not exist in the Constitution. The Declaration of Independence mentions the "Creator," which even by liberal interpretation means God. The only mention of religion in the Constitution is in the First Amendment, and it states: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." The left wing is very fond of quoting the first part of that requirement, and then it totally ignores the second part. Clearly, the Founding Fathers wanted to prohibit a nationally sponsored religion and to prohibit the government from entering into any and all matters of religion. If Congress, by law, is not allowing the free exercise of religion, then there is a violation but not the one that Marc Perkel wants ("The separation of church and state is wearing away," Letters, Nov. 12).

Mr. Perkel complains about (religious) school vouchers, but where did the government get the authority to collect those school taxes in the first place? The 10th Amendment is very clear, and it states: "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States, respectively, or to the people." Please show me where the Constitution gives the U.S. government the power to collect school taxes, to oversee the schools and to subsidize them. This is a power the federal government has illegally and unconstitutionally usurped from the states and the people. …

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