Divided by God

I think not
#1
The separation of church and state is an important issue in many different societies. Should the government actively support and endorse any particular religions or religion generally? Should the government suppress religion in public so as to prevent sectarian strife? Or should the government remain generally neutral, neither helping nor hindering any religions?

So what is the separation of church and state? What does it mean for religion, religious organizations and the government? Does it really mean anything for people personally, or is it only a function of large groups? What does it mean to be a separationist, accommodationist, or non-preferentialist?

In the United States:

Bill of Rights
Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, [Establishment Clause] or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; [Free Excercise Clause] or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

In Canada:

Section 1 & 2 of The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms states that certain freedoms are guaranteed and are subject "only to such reasonable limits that prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society." Among these freedoms is are "freedom of conscience and religion..." These sections are vaguely similar to the free exercise clause of the 1st Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Opinions?
 
Jersay
#2
I would like to see a seperation of church and state.
 
I think not
#3
And what is "Separation of Church & State"?

Does Harper violate your views on separation by saying "God Bless Canada"?
 
Jersay
#4
If that is his personal view, fine I would go for that, all for the guy to say god bless whatever. He could say God Bless the Toilet bowl for all I care.

As a PM, in a PM viewpoint no.
 
I think not
#5
Let's look at it from a legal perspective, the opening statement of your Charter of Rights and Freedoms:

"Whereas Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of law:"

Harper is well within his rights to say this, since your Charter first and foremost ackowledges the Supremacy of God. And also, The Queen is Guardian of the Faith. So can he be "scolded" by invoking his beliefs?
 
Jersay
#6
Is that in the BNA act or the Constitution of 1982. Because, the times of the BNA Act is different from now?
 
I think not
#7
It's in your Constitution of 1982

laws.justice.gc.ca/en/charter/ (external - login to view)
 
JomZ
#8
It is a touchy subject ITN, with that the Charter does recognize the supremacy of God, and allows for the freedom of practicing faith.

It has been written in a few other threads that most Canadians want a more secular approach to governing the country. Yet, most of us do not want the exclusion of faith altogether.

Actually, a Christian Magazine called “Faith Today” asked all federal party leaders to submit a 600 word essay about faith and politics. The editor did not edit these answers in anyway in order to maintain the purest form of the response.

[url]http://www.faithtoday.ca/article_viewer.asp?Article_ID=189[/ur]

I have expressed my opinions in the past on this issue.

Quote: Originally Posted by JomZ

The fact is that our government should be governed by the people, and serve the to maintain the general order of the population.

Religion of any kind is and should be kept as seperate as possible, and an agnostic approach should be taken to government. That means we do not fully know the existence or non-existence of God or Deity. Our government should place emphasis on making policy based on the knowledge that we know and what is applicable to the world.

I’m not saying that Harper invoking “God bless Canada” is wrong or illegal in anyway. I just feel that governments should try to govern based on the realities of this world and society and not delve into these subjects of which we have really little or no comprehension. The politics of Canada seem to favour a non-partisan approach to political philosophy, and it is to the benefit of all that personal beliefs of everyone be kept personal.
 
Jersay
#9
Now, God in that instance could be one God or many Gods.

Look, it says everyone can have freedom of religion, even Prime Ministers as they represent themselves. SO if they say, I believe or I feel etc, etc, then that is fine.

You could make the case that God could be any form of God or Gods it is just put down as God.

Now that might go against aethiests and others, sorry if I spelt it wrong, who might believe in no god.

But personally, you can have freedom of Religion, as a prime Minister, who represents everyone I don't think so.
 
I think not
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by JomZ

It is a touchy subject ITN

I agree, which is the reason why I brought it up, I think it's an interesting topic.

Quote: Originally Posted by JomZ

I’m not saying that Harper invoking “God bless Canada” is wrong or illegal in anyway. I just feel that governments should try to govern based on the realities of this world and society and not delve into these subjects of which we have really little or no comprehension. The politics of Canada seem to favour a non-partisan approach to political philosophy, and it is to the benefit of all that personal beliefs of everyone be kept personal.

One of thre reasons I brought this topic up is because of Harper's "God Bless Canada" statement. Harper is a Christian, or at least I think he is, when someone believes in a supreme being and invokes a wish based on that belief, is it necessarily a bad thing because of different religions? I see muslims every day in New York that I know and they wish me Insha Allah or Salam Peace, personally I take it as a very nice gesture, they aren't trying to force their religion upon me, but rather wish me well based on something they value.

Now if a politician says that, it becomes an issue, isn't he doing the same thing my muslim friends do? Wishing me well?
 
the caracal kid
#11
"It has been written in a few other threads that most Canadians want a more secular approach to governing the country. Yet, most of us do not want the exclusion of faith altogether. "

Agreed. Religion does not belong in governance. Given the multitudes of beleifs that we claim are all welcome and valid and equal, we can not promote one as an "official" or "legitimate" belief structure without creating division.

Spirituality is a personal issue and should be treated as such. People are free to express and find their spirituality however they choose so long as it does not infringe on others.

The government needs to allow this spirituality to be private and not endorse or dismiss any belief structure. Religions (revealed/unrevealed, or spirtuality, or lack there-of) belongs in the house of the individual.
 
I think not
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by Jersay

Now, God in that instance could be one God or many Gods.

No, it cannot. Your Charter of Rights and Freedoms was signed by your Head of State, The Queen of England, Defender of the Faith. And we know what her faith is.
 
tracy
#13
I don't care if Stephen Harper is a christian or Paul Martin is a catholic as long as their religion won't govern their politics. I think Martin actually said it best when the pope was giving him flack about SSM in the media. He said something like he was the Prime Minister for all Canadians, not just catholic ones. That's how I want a PM to approach his job.
 
JomZ
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by tracy

as long as their religion won't govern their politics

Exactly, that is what most people want in their politicians. Religion and belief is always going to be a part of a person’s life whether it is an established religion or another form of belief.

Belief is always going to influence but it should not govern, in political policymaking.
 
Jay
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by I think not

Bill of Rights
Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, [Establishment Clause] or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; [Free Excercise Clause] or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Perhaps you could explain to me, ITN, how did this establishment clause get filtered down to the state level?
 
I think not
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

Quote: Originally Posted by I think not

Bill of Rights
Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, [Establishment Clause] or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; [Free Excercise Clause] or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Perhaps you could explain to me, ITN, how did this establishment clause get filtered down to the state level?

Article VI, Paragraph 2 of the United States Constitution is known as the Supremacy Clause:

"This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be Supreme Law of the land; and the Judges in every state shall be bound thereby, any thing in the Constitution or Laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding."
 
Jay
#17
Thank you, most kind sir.
 
pastafarian
#18
I don't see the big deal about recognizing the supremacy of God. If God exists, then She is Supreme, and if not, it's still not such a bad thing to consider than homo sapiens can't be the best that Nature can do....
 
Jay
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by I think not

Quote: Originally Posted by JayQuote: Originally Posted by I think notBill of Rights
Amendment I
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, [Establishment Clause] or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; [Free Excercise Clause] or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.Perhaps you could explain to me, ITN, how did this establishment clause get filtered down to the state level?Article VI, Paragraph 2 of the United States Constitution is known as the Supremacy Clause:
"This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be Supreme Law of the land; and the Judges in every state shall be bound thereby, any thing in the Constitution or Laws of any state to the contrary notwithstanding."

Quote has been trimmed
I'm under the impression that certain states (or all of them, I dunno) had publicly funded schools that had religion taught in them for sometime. This seems to be the case from the early 1800s.

I don't know much about this, but I'm trying to understand. How is it this happened so close to the formation of the USA, when today people scream blue murder if someone mentions God in the cafeteria of a public school? Get my drift here?
 
BorealRock
#20
What if we just used the word "Creator" instead of God for official things.
 
pastafarian
#21
What if God isn't The Creator?
 
I think not
#22
Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

I'm under the impression that certain states (or all of them, I dunno) had publicly funded schools that had religion taught in them for sometime. This seems to be the case from the early 1800s.

You are correct, even today there are schools in a few states that teach religion and in a couple of cases intelligent design. All of it is unconstitutional. You also have to realize that unless someone brings the case against the courts, it will continue. Personally, if a state, let's say, Alabama, wants to teach religion and it is accepted by the people, I have no problem with it, so long as they understand, once it hits the courts, it will be struck down.

Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

I don't know much about this, but I'm trying to understand. How is it this happened so close to the formation of the USA, when today people scream blue murder if someone mentions God in the cafeteria of a public school? Get my drift here?

Because everything takes time, even laws take time to be enforced, especially when we are talking about 200 years ago. It is harder to enforce a law when you try to remove something from society (example, not endorsing religion) as opposed to adding to it (Your SSM for example)
 
BorealRock
#23
Oh I know that question well. Its a late night campfire ponder. I've just always thought 'creator' would be a short term solution more people could live with.
 
Jay
#24
Thanks.

I'm just having a hard time understanding how something that is supposed to be so fundamental to the bill of rights just gets forgotten about by state legislators and the people at large for so long, from the beginning.

I have to do some reading on the subject.
 
pastafarian
#25
Well, BorealRock, the anti-religion types are just as touchy as the pro-religion types. That's really my point, rather than the theological one. I doubt they'd go for "Creator,", "Supreme Being" or "Omnipotent Invisible Friend", either.
 
I think not
#26
Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

Thanks.

I'm just having a hard time understanding how something that is supposed to be so fundamental to the bill of rights just gets forgotten about by state legislators and the people at large for so long, from the beginning.

I have to do some reading on the subject.

I've always been very interested in our Constitution since I was a kid. If you want to do some reading on the topic, make sure you read the Federalist Papers and notes from the founding fathers.
 
Jay
#27
I see what your up too.... your trying to get me to read revolutionary propaganda and turn me against the Queen!! :P
 
I think not
#28
Quote: Originally Posted by Jay

I see what your up too.... your trying to get me to read revolutionary propaganda and turn me against the Queen!! :P

Yup. A little revolution does a body good
 
the caracal kid
#29
I am all for revolution!

When we are done, we could even try the "queen", as head representative of the house of windsor, for crimes against humanity.
 
jimmoyer
#30
Number Nine.

Number Nine.

Number Nine.
 

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