Michigan Sen. Colbeck introduces “patriotism” bills modeled after bill pushed by Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann

Draped in a flag, carrying a cross

With all of the struggles Michigan faces right now, it’s good to know that things aren’t so bad that religious zealots and “patriots” like Senator Patrick Colbeck have time to worry about censorship in the teaching of American History in our classrooms. This week, Colbeck introduced a bill to remedy this egregious (and essentially nonexistent) problem. The bill is modeled after legislation promoted and passed in 2005 by far-right conservative and tea party goddess Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota. Bachmann’s bill copies a law passed in North Carolina in 1997.

Colbeck bragged about his new bill on his Facebook page where he has been cutting and pasting passages from the Declaration of Independence referring to the tyranny of the King of England as if they are snippets of the Gospels:

Yesterday, I introduced SB 120 and 121. These bills are known as the American Heritage Act and Celebrate Freedom Week Act respectively. SB 120 would prohibit censorship of education material on the basis of religious content. SB 121 requires the instruction of core American principles during Constitution Week for public school students in grades 3-12. Many wonder why our nation is divided and experiencing negative economic growth. I would submit that it is because we have lost an understanding of the core principles that made us great and wandered from the execution of thes principles. Article VIII, Section 2 of the Michigan Constitution states clearly that the purpose of education is to develop good citizens. These bills will help to ensure that we adhere to this mission.

Here’s the text of SB120:

     Sec. 1168. (1) The board of a school district or intermediate school district or board of directors of a public school academy shall permit grade-level instruction for pupils to read and study America’s founding documents, including documents that contributed to the foundation or maintenance of America’s representative form of limited government, the Bill of Rights, our free-market economic system, and patriotism.

     (2) The board of a school district or intermediate school district or board of directors of a public school academy, or a school official or employee of a school district, intermediate school district, or public school academy, shall not censor or restrain instruction in American history or heritage or Michigan state history or heritage based on religious references in original source documents, writings, speeches, proclamations, or records.

The language and the title “American Heritage Act” are cut and pasted from similar legislation passed in Minnesota in 2001. Here’s the Minnesota law which Colbeck’s bill copies almost verbatim:

a) School districts shall permit grade-level instruction for students to read and study America’s founding documents, including documents that contributed to the foundation or maintenance of America’s representative form of limited government, the Bill of Rights, our free-market economic system, and patriotism.”

b) Districts may not censor or restrain instruction in American or Minnesota state history or heritage based on religious references in original source documents, writings, speeches, proclamations, or records.

This legislation was deemed entirely unnecessary but was a pet project of Minnesota tea partiers and, of course, Bachmann as well. From a piece by Chris Rodda at Huffington Post:

By his work with Bachmann on Minnesota’s “history standards,” Barton was referring to Bachmann’s 2005 introduction of legislation to allow the use of historical documents containing religious references in the state’s public schools — legislation that was completely unnecessary given that Minnesota already had a law on the books stating that, “Districts may not censor or restrain instruction in American or Minnesota state history or heritage based on religious references in documents, writing, speeches, proclamations, or records.” That law, passed in 2001, was also considered by many legislators to be unnecessary, because nothing prohibited the use of these documents at that time either. Barton had testified before Minnesota’s House Education Policy Committee on the 2001 bill, and was brought in as “an historian and consultant” in 2005 when Bachmann introduced her bill.

But Bachmann’s new law wasn’t the first. In 1997, North Carolina passed S442, their own version called, as you may have guessed, “The American Heritage Act” with this wording:

Local boards of education shall allow and may encourage any public school teacher or administrator to read or post in a public school building, classroom, or event, excerpts or portions of writings, documents, and records that reflect the history of the United States, including, but not limited to, (i) the preamble to the North Carolina Constitution, (ii) the Declaration of Independence, (iii) the United States Constitution, (iv) the Mayflower Compact, (v) the national motto, (vi) the National Anthem, (vii) the Pledge of Allegiance, (viii) the writings, speeches, documents, and proclamations of the founding fathers and Presidents of the United States, (ix) decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States, and (x) acts of the Congress of the United States, including the published text of the Congressional Record. Local boards, superintendents, principals, and supervisors shall not allow content-based censorship of American history in the public schools of this State, including religious references in these writings, documents, and records.

Finally, in 2007, Oklahoma passed their own version added the following language to the school laws (Section 517.0.1. Veterans – Program for Observing. (70 O.S. § 24-152)):

By December 31, 2007, the State Board of Education shall adopt rules which require each public school district in the state to include, as a part of a social studies class, during Celebrate Freedom Week or during another full school week as determined by the board of education, appropriate instruction concerning the intent, meaning, and importance of the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, in their historical contexts. The religious references in the writings of the founding fathers shall not be censored. The rules shall require the study of the Declaration of Independence to include the study of the relationship of the ideas expressed in that document to subsequent American history, including the relationship of its ideas to the rich diversity of our people as a nation of immigrants, the American Revolution, the formulation of the United States Constitution, and the abolitionist movement, which led to the Emancipation Proclamation and the women’s suffrage movement.

Senator Colbeck isn’t accomplishing anything of significance with these phony displays of patriotism. He’s attempting to solve yet another problem that doesn’t exist. Our children aren’t being denied access to the teachings or writings of the “Founding Fathers” based on religious censorship any more than President Obama is a tyrant akin to the King of England in 1776 despite what the good Senator may want you to believe. These are empty gestures that simply shore up his support among the most rabidly conservative and politically active tea partiers in his district and will help him avoid a primary.

We have problems in Michigan. Big problems. Real problems. Many of them are taking place right outside of Sen. Colbeck’s southeastern Michigan front door. While these problems fester and become worse day by day, Senator Colbeck is wasting our time and our tax money on demonstrations of faux patriotism.

One thing is very, very clear: the 7th Senate District needs new leadership.

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  • The Truth

    Great idea, Senator Colbeck! I’d like to submit a piece of wisdom from one of our founders for your consideration and study: “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel” – Samuel Johnson, 1775

    • http://alternet.com/ George Schmitt

      I thought it was religion?

  • Michiganmitch

    Colbreck’s bill included a phrase which (as usual for Teabaggers) takes for granted assumptions that are essentially false: “including documents that contributed to the foundation or maintenance of America’s representative form of limited government, the Bill of Rights, our free-market economic system, and patriotism.” One question for Patty, where in any of the founding documents is there any mention of a free-market economic system? On top of that, our Constitution actually represented a dramatic rejection of a much more limited form of government that the Articles of Confederation provided for.

  • Michiganmitch

    Why do the likes of Colbreck always fail to cite specifically the freedumbs and liberteas that they have had snatched from them by the socialist Kenyan?

  • Dan

    so this is one of the Commie sites i keep hearing about…where you hear all the lies -half-truths..slander…hate speech and blaspheming coming from…this is going to be fun…but then again i will probably get banned as soon as this get posted…..if it gets posted at all…i know what gets commies upset….the truth and to see someone (a leftist Nazi) named “The Truth” on this site is quite funny …but i guess you have to fool people some how and after all…whats in a name…like the miss representation of what Sam Johnson said… (“Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel” – Samuel Johnson, 1775) again HALF TRUTHS and lies…did he say it…yes… but taken out of context and used in a misleading way you would think he hated Patriots…but alas the truth is out there…if you look…but morons wont look cause it wouldn’t advance there dark agenda…

    http://www.samueljohnson.com/refuge.html

    Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.
    Boswell tells us that Samuel Johnson made this famous
    pronouncement that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel
    on the evening of April 7, 1775. He doesn’t provide any context
    for how the remark arose, so we don’t really know for sure
    what was on Johnson’s mind at the time.

    However, Boswell assures us that Johnson was not indicting
    patriotism in general, only false patriotism.
    For more of Samuel Johnson’s thoughts on patriotism in
    general, go to the patriotism
    page.

    For a discussion on a possible false patriot who
    Johnson might have been thinking of, see this discussion.

    now i will address the subject at hand…”Education”

    if you dare….go here and read what you leftist have done to America:

    http://publiushuldah.wordpress.com/?s=Education

    or read it here:

    How Progressive Education and Bad Philosophy Corrupted The People & Undermined The Constitution of The United States

    By Publius Huldah.

    Throughout human history, the prevailing belief system changes from
    time to time & place to place; most people unthinkingly absorb
    whatever happens to be the prevailing dogma of their time & place.
    Here, I will show the radical differences between the philosophy of our
    Founding Era and the philosophy of today. And when I have done so, you
    will understand why our Country is declining and what you
    can do about it. In a nutshell, the Enlightenment philosophy of our
    Founding Era, which was based on Reason and the recognition of the
    existence of Fixed Principles, was taken away from us; and replaced with
    the subjective philosophies of Pragmatism & Existentialism, both of
    which reject Reason and deny the existence of Objective Truth &
    Fixed Principles. These are now the prevailing dogma of our Time; and
    unless we promptly repudiate them, we will fall.

    Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, & John Jay (authors of The
    Federalist Papers), and others at the Federal Convention of 1787,
    embodied the best aspects of The Age of Enlightenment. They were well
    educated, exquisitely knowledgeable in statecraft & political
    philosophy, embraced the concepts of Objective Reality & Fixed
    Principles, knew Logic, and could think.
    George Washington, a man renowned for his Moral Character, which was
    based on Judeo-Christian ideals, presided over the Convention.

    The Fruit of the Philosophy, Religion, & well-trained
    Minds of our Framers was a Constitution which ordained and established a
    Federation of States which united only for THE LIMITED PURPOSES
    enumerated in the Constitution: national defense, international
    commerce & relations; and domestically, the creation of an uniform
    commercial system: Weights & measures, patents & copyrights, a
    monetary system based on gold & silver, bankruptcy laws, and mail
    delivery.

    1Progressive “Education” & the Conditioning of the American People

    But during the 19th Century, Progressives took control of public schools & teachers’ colleges. They then conditioned teachers
    and children to abandon our Founders’ Enlightenment philosophy of
    Reason, Fixed Principles, & Judeo-Christian ideals; and to accept a
    new ideology which replaced Reason with “feelings” and denied the
    existence of an Objective Reality & Fixed Principles. They thus
    primed the objects of their conditioning to accept whatever attitudes
    the Progressives chose to instill in them. And the objects of this
    conditioning did not – do not – know what was done to them!

    Samuel L. Blumenfeld explains the two opposing philosophies of education:

    the “progressives”…viewed public education
    primarily as a tool for social and cultural reform to be achieved
    through the remaking of human nature; and the
    traditionalists …viewed education, public or private, primarily as a
    development of an individual’s intellectual skills in combination with
    moral instruction based on Judeo-Christian ideals. ["Is Public Education
    Necessary?", Ch. 12]

    Thanks to the traditional education they received, our Framers knew history, political philosophy & statecraft, Logic, Judeo-Christian moral ideals, and could think!

    Thanks to progressive “education”, Americans have been so dumbed-down that they can’t read, 2
    know nothing, and can’t think. After the Progressives ripped moral
    instruction based on Judeo-Christian ideals out of the public schools,
    and replaced it with the view that morality is a matter of subjective
    personal opinion or group consensus, 3 we
    became an amoral people who kill babies, reject altogether the concept
    of personal responsibility, insist on a claimed “right” to live at other
    peoples’ expense, and believe that the only guide for our conduct is
    our own likes, dislikes, & “feelings”: “I like it” or “I don’t like it”; “I feel like it” or “I
    don’t feel like it”. We became so shallow and morally blind that we
    elect fools & tyrants to high office. Thanks to “self-esteem”
    classes, we believe that our views & “feelings” on subjects of which
    we have no knowledge whatsoever are as important as anybody else’s.

    With our untrained & empty minds and instilled amorality, we were
    rendered incapable of resisting the conditioning of the Progressives.
    And this, Folks, has been the purpose of public “education” ever since the Progressives took it over.

    2000 years of Western Philosophy on Metaphysics & Epistemology 4 in One Paragraph

    So! In Western Civilization, we had the Age of Faith (There is an Objective Reality & Truth 5
    and they are revealed in the Bible & Works of Creation); the
    Enlightenment (There is an objective Reality & Truth and we discover
    it by use of Reason); the Age of Romanticism (“Truth” is found in your
    emotions & feelings); and now, Pragmatism & Existentialism
    (There is no Objective Reality; “Truth” is a concept which has no
    meaning; there are no fixed principles, there is only “opinion” and one
    man’s “opinion” is as good as another’s).

    Pragmatism & Existentialism

    During the late 19th century, the philosophy of Pragmatism
    (William James, Charles Saunders Peirce, John Dewey) arose. It
    rejected the concept of an Objective Reality with its Timeless Truths.
    Instead of concerning oneself with the question of whether something is
    “True”, the pragmatist asks, “What difference will it make in my life
    whether I believe it or don’t believe it?” So one looks to the
    “utility” of believing it or not believing it. If it has a good result
    for me, it is “true”. If it has a bad result for me, it is not “true”.
    What is “true” for me may not be “true” for you, so an idea can be
    “true” for some and not “true” for others. Furthermore, what is “true” for me today may not be “true” for me tomorrow, so “truth” evolves.

    Do you see? They tossed the concept of Objective Truth – Objective Reality – Fixed Principles & Standards – out the window.

    Pragmatism morphed into Existentialism (Jean-Paul Sartre). Existentialism rejects an objective basis for life in favor of a subjective basis: 6
    Humans are merely biological organisms living meaningless lives, making
    “choices” on the basis of no criteria whatsoever other than their own
    likes or dislikes. Since there is no basis for any external Principles
    or Standards to which we must conform, people are free to do whatever
    they want.

    Again, it was the Colleges of Education and the public schools which were the vehicles for dumbing-down the American People and conditioning them to reject the Philosophy of our Founders, and to accept the pragmatist & existentialist mind-set.

    A friend recalls an incident which happened around 1960 in English
    class in an American public high school. The students read a story.
    The teacher asked each student to say what the story meant to him. Whatever
    a student said was praised by the teacher. But my friend said, “It
    doesn’t matter what it means to me. What matters is what the author
    says.” The teacher was most displeased with that remark.

    Do you see? Under the pretext of teaching literature, the teacher
    indoctrinated her students into rejecting the concept of Objective
    Reality & Fixed Principles, and accepting a subjective world-view
    devoid of objective meaning. The teacher most likely had no idea what
    she was doing – she was just following her teacher’s manual. She was
    thus one of the millions of useful idiots who
    graduate from our Colleges of Education and set about assisting in the
    destruction of the minds & morals of the American People. 7

    Do you not remember hearing over & over in your public schools,
    “There is no black or white, there is only gray.” “What’s true for me
    may not be true for you”. “If it works, it’s right.” “What does it
    mean to you?” And when one is facing a moral decision, one is asked,
    “How do you feel about it?” One’s “feelings” are set up as the criterion for making moral decisions! There is no appeal to objective standards of Right & Wrong. That was ripped out of the public schools by the Progressives. And we are mystified by the high crime rates among our children? 8

    Most Americans are now existentialists, even though they never heard
    of John Paul Sartre. We see our own “likes”, “dislikes”, &
    “feelings” as the only standard. We just want to “feel good”. That our
    personal likes & dislikes are irrelevant
    when they conflict with objective Standards of Good & Bad, Right
    & Wrong, is unthinkable. I’ll illustrate: It is painful, but we
    have no time left to pussy-foot:

    Standards of Conduct: What’s Right By Objective Standards? Or, What do I like?

    Talk to an obese person about what he eats: He will most likely say something like, “I’ll eat what I like.” He thus follows a subjective standard: his likes & his dislikes. Because he is an existentialist (though doesn’t know it), he rejects the idea that there is an objective standard
    by which one can decide what to eat and what to avoid: That of health –
    Is the food healthy? Or unhealthy? And if you tell him of this
    objective standard, he’ll say, “I don’t care – I’ll eat what I like.” The essence of the existentialist mind-set is that the existentialist sees no reason why he should set anything above his own “feelings”, likes, or dislikes.

    There was a stay-at-home Mom. When her young children were hungry,
    she tossed them a box of crackers or cookies, or took them to a fast
    food joint.. Why? Because she didn’t like to cook. That she
    had a DUTY to provide her children with healthy food, never entered her
    mind. She didn’t “like” cooking, she “felt like” going to the mall
    instead, and that was the end of the matter.

    Couch potatoes don’t exercise because they “hate” exercise. They
    reject the objective fact of Reality that exercise is necessary to be
    healthy.

    Pragmatism, Existentialism & Federal Judges

    So! With the rise of Pragmatism & its conception of evolving and
    subjective “truth”, American lawyers abandoned the concept of Law as a
    body of fixed principles (set forth in The Declaration, The
    Constitution, Blackstone’s Commentaries, Natural Law &/or the
    Bible), and embraced the concept of an “evolving” law and an “evolving” Constitution which means whatever they – the judges – say it means! Remember! To the pragmatist, “truth” evolves. 9

    So THIS is the philosophical basis for
    judges on the supreme Court tossing out The Federalist Papers as the
    objective standard of the meaning of The Constitution; and substituting
    their own opinions. When they were in school, they were conditioned to reject the concept of Objective & Fixed Standards, and to accept Pragmatism & Existentialism;
    and I bet you few (if any) of them ever thought it through. They did
    not resist the conditioning – they just accepted what their Manipulators
    instilled in them.

    We teeter on the brink of disaster. YOU must rise to the occasion.
    Our Country & our Posterity depend on YOUR repudiating the
    destructive philosophies your conditioners foisted on you; and
    reclaiming the rational Enlightenment philosophy & Judeo-Christian
    morality of our Framers. We can not save our children unless we close the public schools. 10 Education must be privatized, and we better do it now. PH

    Endnotes:

    1 Our Constitution follows the Biblical model: a civil government with defined powers which is subject to – under – the Law. Civil government is not the source of Law! The law comes from a higher authority: God is the source of Law in the Bible; The Declaration of Independence & The Constitution
    are the Source of Law in our Country. Acts of the three branches of
    the federal government are lawful or unlawful depending on whether they
    are consistent with the Declaration & authorized by The
    Constitution. These are the standard of what is “lawful” – NOT the fiat of the brain-washed judges who sit on our courts.

    Lex, Rex by
    Rev. Samuel Rutherford (1644), is a masterwork of which modern American
    pastors are ignorant. Rev. Rutherford proves that civil authorities
    have legitimacy ONLY to the extent they obey The Law. We see all around
    us the results of our pastors’ ignorance of these Biblical teachings.

    2 Two/thirds of Wisconsin 8th graders can’t read proficiently!
    Yet their teachers are screaming for more benefits to be paid for by
    the taxpayers, while lying about being sick. With the public schools,
    we have financed our own destruction. And most Americans who can read,
    are unable to read The Federalist Papers. Yet The Federalist is
    essential for a correct understanding of the objective (genuine) meaning
    of our Constitution & they were published in Newspapers in 1787-88!

    3 “Values clarification” is the version of “moral guidance” foisted in the public schools on our children since the 1960′s. Public school teachers are telling children that they are “…free
    to choose ethical and moral behavior that resonates with them.” They
    thus “liberate” children from “authoritarian” teachings on morality.

    4 “Metaphysics” deals with the nature of Reality; “Epistemology”, with theories of Knowledge. The Ayn Rand Institute has an excellent lexicon
    for philosophical terms. Rand was a non-theist; PH is a Christian
    theist. Hence, there are some differences. But both see “Natural Law”
    (Physics, Mathematics, Logic, Morality, Politics, etc.)
    as woven into the Fabric of Reality. Both see the Universe as governed
    by LAW; and that the duty of man is to learn & to obey these Laws.

    Thus, the Great Divide is between those who accept the concept of
    Divine or “Natural Law”; and those, such as Progressives, Libertarians,
    Pragmatists, & Existentialists, who reject it. They deny the
    existence of any standard other than their own “feelings”, likes &
    dislikes.

    5 “objective reality”
    means this: “Reality exists as an objective absolute—facts are facts,
    independent of man’s feelings, wishes, hopes or fears.” In other words,
    things are the way they are regardless of what you like, don’t like, agree with or don’t agree with.

    6 “subjectivism”
    is “…the belief that reality is not a firm absolute, but a fluid,
    plastic, indeterminate realm which can be altered, in whole or in part,
    by the consciousness of the perceiver—i.e., by his feelings, wishes or
    whims. It is the doctrine which holds that man—an entity of a specific
    nature, dealing with a universe of a specific nature—can, somehow, live,
    act and achieve his goals apart from and/or in contradiction to the
    facts of reality, i.e., apart from and/or in contradiction to his own
    nature and the nature of the universe…”

    7 In “The Abolition of Man“, C.S. Lewis illustrates how the concept of “objective value” was ripped out of the hearts of British school children by their
    teachers. He also discusses the “Natural Law” and how it has been
    universally recognized. His book is only 113 pages, double-spaced, &
    one of the most important books ever written. Read it. Outline it. Tell
    all in your spheres of influence.

    8 But at least we can take comfort in the
    knowledge that our children are not being taught in public schools such
    things as, “thou shalt not kill”, “thou shalt not steal”, “thou shalt
    not bear false witness”, “thou shalt not covet”, and other such
    “authoritarian” & offensive rubbish.

    9 In “The Second American Revolution“, attorney John W. Whitehead (Rutherford Institute) writes of this. This is a valuable book which shows how bad philosophy corrupted our judges.

    10 Glen Beck
    and others are showing that under the pretext of teaching reading,
    progressive “educators” are now telling our children the Lie that our
    Constitution institutes socialism! PH

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Andrew-Chase/100000858932965 Andrew Chase

      Privatize schools? And what happens to the kids whose parents can’t afford the tuition for private schools? Would you rather have them roaming the streets?

      “Our Constitution follows the Biblical model: a civil government with defined powers which is subject to – under – the Law. Civil government is not the source of Law! The law comes from a higher authority: God is the source of Law in the Bible; The Declaration of Independence & The Constitution”

      Funny how the Constitution makes no mention of, or reference to, God, Jesus, the Bible, or Christianity. In fact, the only religious references in it are exclusionary.

      “The United States is in no sense founded upon the Christian religion,…” – The Treaty Of Tripoli, drafted by Thomas Jefferson, negotiated by George Washington, and ratified by John Adams.

      • Dan

        wow!!! hard to answer an idiot…so i won’t….

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Andrew-Chase/100000858932965 Andrew Chase

      Furthermore, private schools can refuse to enroll a student for reasons that include, but aren’t limited to;

      Those whose parents don’t belong to the “right” religion, or the “right” church.

      Those whose parents are single, separated, or divorced.

      Those who have a parent in prison, on probation, or on parole.

      Those whose parents are a mixed race or mixed religion couple.

      Those whose parents are a GLBT couple.

      Those who live with an aunt, uncle, or grandparent.

      Those who are handicapped- most private schools aren’t equipped or staffed to deal with handicapped kids.

      For all the problems that public schools have, one good thing is that all kids, regardless of background, have an opportunity at education.

    • http://twitter.com/RickSnyderPR Rick Snyder PR

      TL; DR. Learn the interwebz.

    • EZehnder

      We are not a Christian nation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Tripoli

  • RegConserative

    Why are you against teaching our history ? I know that progressive at the top of your page ,you don’t want any kids to find out any thing good !

    • http://eclectablog.com Eclectablog

      On the contrary, I WANT our kids to understand our history and the philosophies of our Founding Fathers. I’d like the tea partiers like Colbeck to learn them to.
      Did you even read the post?

      • RegConserative

        I apologize, I made a big blunder and put wrong post in I guess It don’t fit !

  • http://twitter.com/RickSnyderPR Rick Snyder PR

    I am now a member of the online graveyard for people banned from Senator Colbeck’s facebook page.. http://www.facebook.com/OnlineGraveyardColbeck

  • EZehnder

    Does this mean that teachers should be encouraging the students to read the candid letters of our Founding Fathers? Like the ones where they completely lambaste organized religion and make it abundantly clear that America is to be founded on the freedom of religion (in your mind) and freedom from religious practices (churches have influence).

    Examples:

    Thomas Jefferson to Horatio Spofford, 1814
    “In every country and every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own. It is easier to acquire wealth and power by this combination than by deserving them…”

    http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/www/buckner_01_02.htm

    Thomas Jefferson to Alexander von Humboldt December 6, 1813
    “History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance, of which their civil as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes.”

    http://www.let.rug.nl/usa/presidents/thomas-jefferson/letters-of-thomas-jefferson/jefl224.php

    James Madison to Edward Livingston
    James Madison explaining how “Religion and Government will exist in greater purity the less they are mixed together”. The tone of the letter is far more centered on Government not endorsing or legislating any particular religion but rather making sure that all religions (popular or unpopular) are treated equally and with respect. The letter starts with his dismay that Congress had appointed Chaplains and that they were paid from the National Treasury.

    http://press-pubs.uchicago.edu/founders/documents/amendI_religions66.html

    Thomas Paine – Age of Reason
    Thomas Paine declaring his faith and declaring he believes all organized churches are set up to terrify and enslave mankind. In other words, religious freedom is different than church freedom.

    http://www.ushistory.org/paine/reason/reason1.htm

  • Pingback: Michigan Republican Colbeck still worried kids are being kept from learning American history | Eclectablog

  • http://alternet.com/ George Schmitt

    Let the teachers run the schools. They are trained to do so, you are not.

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