A Youtube video shows a mass baptism at Villa Rica High School from August 17th. (Photo: YouTube, via WXIA-TV)Note: There’s been an update on this story; please see below.

America’s Christianists have a lot of trouble with separation of church and state. To be blunt, they don’t fucking want it. They despise court decisions like Engel v. Vitale (1962) and Abington S.D. v. Schempp (1963) which took religious instruction out of public schools … because, quite obviously, kids can’t get that kind of instruction at home, in church, or in Sunday school.

Oh wait, they can. Woops. I forgot. Christianists need to make sure their religion saturates everyone’s daily existence, because without it … well, I guess everything goes “poof.” Or something.

Anyway … Christianists aren’t about to let little things like the Supreme Court get in the way of doing their deity’s bidding. They consistently and repeatedly violate the law and act as though there’s nothing wrong with it. Because Jesus.

An egregious example of this, as WXIA-TV in Atlanta reports, happened a couple weeks ago in western Georgia (WebCite cached article):

A Georgia school district is investigating after video of a mass baptism was posted on YouTube.

The video, posted by First Baptist Villa Rica, was shot on school grounds just before football practice. “We had the privilege of baptizing a bunch of football players and a coach on the field of Villa Rica High School! We did this right before practice! Take a look and see how God is STILL in our schools!” the caption with the video reads.

By Tuesday evening, the video had been removed from YouTube.

Someone, apparently, thought better of having stuck evidence of this SOCAS violation on the Internet … but it wasn’t enough. The cat’s out of the bag.

Note the church’s language (i.e. “God is STILL in our schools!”). Thus, this baptism was an act of Christianist defiance. The church may have deleted it from Youtube, but others associated with Villa Rica High School football haven’t shied from their fierce public-school religionism; this post from the Villa Rica Touchdown Club’s Facebook page makes that evident (locally-cached version).

The Freedom From Religion Foundation has asked the school district to investigate and remedy the situation. It’s possible the school district will do the right thing, firing any staff who may have arranged this baptism, and prevent them from happening again. But then, this is the Bible Belt Bobble Bay-elt, and for all we know, the school district doesn’t see anything wrong with it. Who knows?

Update: It turns out the school district does see something wrong with this. They concede this baptism violated procedures (cached). As for whether anyone will be fired because they knew damned well something happened that shouldn’t have … well, I don’t plan to hold my breath waiting for that.

Photo credit: YouTube, via WXIA-TV.

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  • tjmccann3

    The Constitution nowhere includes the phrase regarding a wall of "Separation between Church and State", which is taken from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to a Baptist group in Danbury Connecticut. Jefferson's use of that phrase in the letter nowhere involves any sort of limitation of religious expression but rather only prohibits the State from influence upon the church.

    The First Amendment actually explicitly prohibits Congress from making ANY LAW " prohibiting the free exercise thereof". The only prohibition established by the Constitution is to the State, prohibiting the establishment of religion, which that Amendment recognizes as Congress making any law establishing any religion. A coach's exercise of a baptism before practice is not establishing a religion by Congress enacting a law.

    Furthermore, the Constitution itself provides the federal government no authority whatsoever to write laws directly applicable to the people of the several States. This would also prohibit the Supreme Court from dictating 'what the law is" when the federal government has no such authority. The only authority in the Enumerated Powers provided the federal government to enact laws directly applicable to the people of the several States is to in unconsolidated territories, and the 100 mile square area we know today as the District of Columbia itself.

    The only interest acting contrary to the law, and Law of the Land, is the federal government itself.

    The Constitution provides for "freedom of religion" and nowhere provides any sort of guarantee for "freedom from religion."

    • Re: "The Constitution nowhere includes the phrase regarding a wall of 'Separation between Church and State …"

      Irrelevant. We have it nonetheless. That's what was intended by the First Amendment. And we know this from the pen of James Madison, the man who wrote it. You're free to be unhappy about it, but it's real, and there's not one fucking thing you can do about it. I suggest learning to live with it, instead.

      Re: "… which is taken from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson to a Baptist group in Danbury Connecticut."

      This is commonly thought, but is not true. The phrase actually originated over a century earlier with Roger Williams, founder of Rhode Island. Jefferson echoed Williams. All the Founders were aware of Williams' work on religious freedom.

      Re: "The First Amendment actually explicitly prohibits Congress from making ANY LAW 'prohibiting the free exercise thereof'."

      Correct, but the implications of that were explained by the Amendment's author, who said there is a "separation between Religion & Govt in the Constitution of the United States"

      Re: "A coach's exercise of a baptism before practice is not establishing a religion by Congress enacting a law."

      True, however, the incorporation doctrine, brought into play by the Fourteenth Amendment, imposes Constitutional limits on levels of government other than just Congress.

      Re: "Furthermore, the Constitution itself provides the federal government no authority whatsoever to write laws directly applicable to the people of the several States."

      I have no idea what this even means. I'm sure it sounds all legalistic and crap, but … ?

      Re: "This would also prohibit the Supreme Court from dictating 'what the law is' when the federal government has no such authority."

      The federal government has authority to police civil rights.

      Re: "The only interest acting contrary to the law, and Law of the Land, is the federal government itself. The Constitution provides for 'freedom of religion' and nowhere provides any sort of guarantee for 'freedom from religion.'"

      Ah. You're one of those people. I see. Well, if you're convinced there's no "freedom from religion" in the US, then you just go right ahead, track me down, and force this insolent, cynical, godless agnostic heathen to join a religion. Because, after all, if there's no "freedom from religion" as you say, then I have absolutely no right to remain a non-believer. Come on, do something about that! I dare you … right here and now. Go for it. Lock and load. If I have no right to non-belief, and if it's imperative for every American, including me, to belong to your religion, then you have no reason not to do so. Get to it!

      On the other hand … if you haven't the courage to give it a try … then you're just going to have to admit that I can, in fact, remain a non-believer if I wish to (no matter how angry it makes you), which means your whole "there's no freedom from religion" notion is essentially useless. Because you've already shown you're unwilling to enforce it.

      As I said near the start of my reply to you, I suggest the better path for you to follow is to grow up, accept there are people in the world who don't believe as you do and never will do so, and just get over it already.

      Oh … and I'm still waiting for the explanation for why this baptism could not have taken place in a church or at someone'e home, but only could take place on school property. Do baptisms only have sacred power when done on public property? If so, what's the scriptural or theological justification for that position? Have you any explanation? This is another of my dares to you: Have you the courage to offer an answer? I suspect you won't be able to provide one, but I suppose you could always surprise me.

  • tjmccann3

    Re "Irrelevant. We have it nonetheless. That's what was intended by the First Amendment."

    No, we don't have the exclusion of religion at all, much less "nonetheless". It is a modern fabrication from the corruption a progressive judiciary, with those same founders even intending to prohibit that judiciary from stating 'what the law is". even as indicated by the 7th Amendment. The entire purpose of the Constitution is to limit the federal government, and not at all to limit individual liberties and expression. And there's always something one can do, such as what the individuals did on that football field in Georgia. But that's just a "fucking" start. You will have to deal with what is coming, as Americans are no longer content to have a few abuse the color of law and authority to dictate terms that are nowhere within their legitimate authority.

    Re: "This is commonly thought, but is not true. The phrase actually originated over a century "

    That's missing the point. When common people quote the "separation of church and state", they are quoting from Jefferson's Baptist letter, and not Roger Williams, founder of Rhode Island, who did so as a reaction to the church and state being one and the same in Britain. Even Williams own quotation promotes religious liberty, not freedom from religion, with the only limitation on Religion being it not be "established" in laws by the state", which is the same point Jefferson made. Your own reference refutes your claim.

    Re: "The First Amendment actually explicitly prohibits Congress from making ANY LAW 'prohibiting the free exercise thereof'." Correct, but the implications of that were explained by the Amendment's author, who said there is a "separation between Religion & Govt in the Constitution of the United States"

    Unfortunately the Amendment's author, Madison, and Roger Williams, and the 1st Amendment itself, all do not support your claim that the "wall" of separation is intended to exclude religious expression in society. In fact the only concern by all of these sources is the maintenance of religious freedom by limiting only the state itself, and not by limiting religion. Fortunately we don't have the state dictating the earth is 5,000 years old, or mandating that we adhere directly to the 10 commandments, so you can calm your melodramatic self down. Nothing Madison expressed supports your position.

    Re: "True, however, the incorporation doctrine, brought into play by the Fourteenth Amendment, imposes Constitutional limits on levels of government other than just Congress. "

    No one was arguing that the Coach was baptizing people on the football field as a result of license by the State of Georgia. Members of the U.S. Congress might similarly baptize individuals on their own field of play, without offense to the Constitution.

    The incorporation doctrine is irrelevant, as neither I nor anyone else were arguing that there is an immunity for the State(s) allowing the individuals in those states to freely exercise religious freedom. On the contrary, the argument and evidence, even by Madison and Roger Williams, is that the prohibition of religious expression is nowhere the intent of the 1st Amendment, and therefore not the authority of the federal government..

    Beyond that, the "incorporation doctrine" was a fabricated rationale by the Supreme Court which was only needed as a result of the Court's preceding erroneous rationalization (and then precedent) that the Bill of Rights do not apply to the States themselves. The fact is that Bill of Rights only references rights that are unalienable by all forms of government, and then phrases those rights relative to the federal government, which was the business of the Constitution. The Bill of Rights does not provide those rights, and their expression in the Constitution does not limit the broader recognition of those rights to only the federal government, nor did it ever by implication provide an exemption for the States themselves. .

    • Re: "No, we don't have the exclusion of religion at all, much less 'nonetheless'."

      No one said anything about "exclusion." What people can't do is to use the authority of government to promote their religion.

      Re: "When common people quote the "separation of church and state", they are quoting from Jefferson's Baptist letter, and not Roger Williams …"

      Wrong. Factually speaking that's precisely what they're doing. They just don't know it because they're ignorant of history. Which Jefferson, thankfully, was not.

      Re: "Unfortunately the Amendment's author, Madison, and Roger Williams, and the 1st Amendment itself, all do not support your claim that the 'wall' of separation is intended to exclude religious expression in society."

      OK. So, you're saying you know more about what what Madison, the authority of the First Amendment, had intended it to mean, than he did? Seriously!? Madison had condemned, among other things, Congressional chaplains. How much clearer could he have been? And why are you lying about him?

      Re: "No one was arguing that the Coach was baptizing people on the football field as a result of license by the State of Georgia."

      As coach, he's a government employee doing government work and does so under the oversight of his school district and the state of Georgia.

      Re: "The incorporation doctrine is irrelevant …"

      It's entirely relevant, and you saying it's not, cannot and never will make it so.

      Re: "Beyond that, the "incorporation doctrine" was a fabricated rationale by the Supreme Court …"

      Nonetheless, it has the force of law. You can either accept that, or rail against it uselessly. I suggest the former.

      • tjmccann3

        Re "what people can't do is use the asuthority of government to promote their relgion".

        That's not what the first Amendment indicates, and "using the authority of government" can be, and has been, abused to assume a prohibition nowhere in existence. The Constitution explicitly cites "Congress" (which is interpreted to include the States) no one else, from establishing religion, and specifies this establishment is done by writing laws. The football coach is not Congress, and he's not writing laws. He is merely exercising his protected right to express his faith,

        Re: Roger Williams & "separation of church and state".

        You're wrong. My original statement was that people were quoting from Jefferson's letter to the Danbury Baptists. You then claimed the phrase originates from Roger Williams, which could not be more irrelevant and people are not quoting from. When people reference "separation of church and state" it's irrelevant what Roger Williams said, who died in 1683m more than a century before the Constitution was written . I'm sure I could find reference to separation of church and state in British literature even before Willaims, but I wouldn't bother to do so because it's irrelevant to our terms of government.

        "Factually" people are not referencing Roger Williams, because factually he has no bearing on this country, and they're not as irrational as you are.

        Re: Madison and 1st Amendment.
        No, I'm saing that Madison's own words regarding separation of church and state, the very words that YOU cited, do not support YOUR claims about the exclusion of religious expression from government. Furthermore, it's irrelevant that Madison condemned congressional chaplains, for whatever reason! Additionally you use the word "lying" wioth all the intelligence of a playground juvenile delinquent. Your disagreement with me does not constitute my having lied, particularly when you're misrepresenting Madison's position. "Lying" is the deliberate, knowing misrepresentation of fact, not merely just your disagreement with that representation.

        Re: "As coach, he's a government employee doing government work and does so under the oversight of his school district and the state of Georgia. "

        It's irrelevant that he's a governemnt employee, and the State of Georgia and School district have no authority in this situation either, As an Americvan citizen the coach is entitled to freedom of expression and freedom of religion. Neither the federal government, Congress, the Supeme Court, the State of Georgia nor the school district are able to deprive him of that freedom, and by your own recognition, the federal government and State are explicitly prohibited from writing any law infringing on those freedoms. By virtue of being an employ at a state school, the Coach does not and cannot be expected to reliinquish those unalienable rights. The Coach is not Congress, and people submersing themselves in water of their free will, prior to practice, is not anyone making any sort of law.

        Re: Incorporation doctrine.

        The incorporation doctrine is irrelevant, because neither myself or the coach is claiming any immunity from the 1st Amendment as a result of being in a State! Your reference to that incorporation doctrine is ENTIRELY irrelevant.

        ReL incorporation doctrine having the force of law.

        No, in incorpoation doctrine does not have the force of law, as it has no applicability of law, and is only yet an other judicial philosophy to compensate for a previously mistaken judicial philosophy. In this country, what the Supreme Court rationalizes does not, and was never intended, to have the force of law. The Supreme Court does not have any authority to write law, which resides only with Congress and that lawmaking authority of Congress, does not legitimately extend by the Constitution to the people of the States. What the Supreme Court pontificates is not law, and the Court is not any sort of "black robed supremacy". The Supreme Court only has original jurisdiction over cases having to do with the Constitution, which applies ot the States.

        As previously indicated, the incorporation doctrine is irrelevant to this consideration because no one is claiming the coach was immune to the first Amendment by virtue of being in a State.

        • Re: "That's not what the first Amendment indicates, and 'using the authority of government' can be, and has been, abused to assume a prohibition nowhere in existence."

          Irrelevant. They still can't do it. You don't have to like it, but you do have to live with it. Grow up.

          Re: "You're wrong. My original statement was that people were quoting from Jefferson's letter to the Danbury Baptists. You then claimed the phrase originates from Roger Williams, which could not be more irrelevant and people are not quoting from."

          No, I'm not wrong. I am factualy correct. Stamping and fuming over it cannot and will never make me wrong. Grow up.

          Re: "No, I'm saing that Madison's own words regarding separation of church and state, the very words that YOU cited, do not support YOUR claims about the exclusion of religious expression from government."

          Actually, they do, as I quoted earlier. Stamping and fuming over it cannot and will never change that. Grow up.

          Re: 'It's irrelevant that he's a governemnt employee …"

          It's entirely relevant. Stamping and fuming over it cannot and will never change that. Grow up.

          Re: 'The incorporation doctrine is irrelevant …"

          Wrong. It's entirely relevant. Stamping and fuming over it cannot and will never change that. Grow up.

          Re: "No, in incorpoation doctrine does not have the force of law …"

          Of course it does. Stamping and fuming over it cannot and will never change that. Grow up.

          If all you're going to do is post your childish, petulant refusals to acknowledge reality and keep reiterating tired, juvenile Christofascist whines that are factually untrue, then clearly you don't intend to discuss anything. All you want to do it bully and whine and rail and fume. If so, that's fine. I get it. I really do. Y'all duzzin' wants' none o' dem dere insolent non-b'leevin' types gettin' inna way o'' y'all poundin' da fear o' God inta dem dere yungins. Puhrayz da Lord 'n' pass da Ammunition! Yee hah!

          Well, too bad so sad for you. That's not how this country works. Either grow up and accept it, or whine and cry like a little baby about how horrible it is that you can't run around baptizing everyone whether they want to or not.

  • tjmccann3

    Re: "Furthermore, the Constitution itself provides the federal government no authority whatsoever to write laws directly applicable to the people of the several States." I have no idea what this even means. I'm sure it sounds all legalistic and crap, but … ?

    It means that the federal government has no legitimate authority in the Constitution to write laws, ANY laws, applicable to the people of the several States. That claimed authority by the federal government is illegitimate, nowhere provided even by any amendment, and is therefore null ab initio.

    Re: "The federal government has authority to police civil rights."

    No, actually true Rights are specifically recognized in the Constitution to entirely prohibit ANY AND ALL action and authority by the federal over those rights. The purpose of that recognition of those rights is to prohibit the federal government, period.

    The corrupt more contemporary fabrication of "civil rights" is only the intent of the federal government to wrongly insert itself into the provision, policing, and selective recognition of rights. Even those amendments that seem to encourage such an authority, do not actually provide the federal government that authority, and therefore it does not exist.

    For instance, while the 14th Amendment (and other amendments) concludes with the provision, " The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article," there is no actual provision of a new authority, Specifically, the dictate of laws to the States remains prohibited to Congress, and therefore inappropriate. It is this limitation to Congress to "appropriate legislation" that limited action by Congress regarding the the 15th Amendment's voting rights, to only diminishing in the State's representation in the House.

    Re; "Ah. You're one of those people. I see. Well, if you're convinced there's no "freedom from religion" in the US, then you just go right ahead, track me down, and force this insolent, cynical, godless agnostic heathen to join a religion.:

    "Freedom of Religion" does not involve the ability to dictate religion to anyone, with that being the point of the 1st Amendment. By the Georgia Coach having baptism on the football field, he was not forcing religion upon anyone. None of those so baptized were being forcibly dunked against their will Contrary to your amusing drama-queen claim, that baptism did not force any non-believer to be a believer. Your "rights" have no authority to limit the free expression of others. There is no "freedom from religion" anywhere recognized by the Constitution.

    As far as your belief I am "one of those people", If I am any sort of christian at all, it is the Christian that ate the damn lion, and who has no further cheeks to turn. While I am already locked and loaded, I have no desire to see you forcibly participate in any religion at all, much less one I myself do not participate in, so you can stow your ridiculous dramatics — no one gives a damn except fringe radicals such as yourself. As far as my having the courage, I am almost tempted to give it a try, even violating the precepts of this country, only because you're so very loathsome.

    News flash, Skippy: You can in fact remain a non-believer, and nothing is threatening your non-belief unless your resistance to religion is so minuscule that you are tempted to become a believer, only for the opportunity share the same bathwater with a series of other guys on an open football field.

    I do "accept that there are people in the world who don't believe as I do", however YOU need to accept the fact that your beliefs are not able to infringe upon the beliefs and free expressions of others. Grow up yourself.

    Oh .. and the reason the baptism occurred on a football field, rather than in a church or someone's home, is that it is easier to bring "Muhammad to the Mountain", than the visa versa, but then I'm certain this mix of both metaphor and religion is deeply disturbing and emotionally harmful to you, not to mention confusing for you,. Your best remedy is to get the ACLU to support a class action suit, and thereby leverage the full force and tyranny of the federal government to dictate your terms to ALL of society. That's a brilliant means to protect your freedoms. Those football players and coach do not need to hide their faith in the shadows, and in no way by attending a public school have they relinquished that which is unalienable.

    PsiCOP, if you spent more time policing yourself, rather than others, you might have better luck next time.

    • Re: "The corrupt more contemporary fabrication of 'civil rights' …"

      So you're saying the entire concept of "civil rights" is a fabrication? That no one has any? Really!?

      Re: ""Freedom of Religion" does not involve the ability to dictate religion to anyone …"

      Of course it does! If there is no "freedom from religion," as you said, then I am not free to remain non-religious. That's what the words "no freedom from religion" mean. YOU used them. Either stand behind them, or concede you said something you didn't really mean to say. This is not my problem, it's yours. Take responsibility for it.

      Re: "As far as your belief I am 'one of those people', If I am any sort of christian at all, it is the Christian that ate the damn lion, and who has no further cheeks to turn."

      So you willfully reject Jesus' own teachings to you. Got it.

      Re: "While I am already locked and loaded, I have no desire to see you forcibly participate in any religion at all, much less one I myself do not participate in, so you can stow your ridiculous dramatics — no one gives a damn except fringe radicals such as yourself."

      I see, by virtue of you accusing me of "dramatics" that you didn't get my point … which I clearly and unambiguously spelled out. Which is that you've just admitted there IS, in fact, "freedom from religion" in the US because you are, yourself, not willing to force your religion on me.

      Re: "Oh .. and the reason the baptism occurred on a football field, rather than in a church or someone's home, is that it is easier to bring 'Muhammad to the Mountain', than the visa versa, but then I'm certain this mix of both metaphor and religion is deeply disturbing and emotionally harmful to you, not to mention confusing for you,. "

      So you're saying they did it at a high school because it was convenient for them and because they were afraid not all the kids might adjourn to a church for it. Got it. As for this being "emotionally harmful to" me, it's not. But you just go right ahead and accuse me of feeling things I don't feel in order to rationalize your militant Christianism.

      Re: "Those football players and coach do not need to hide their faith in the shadows, and in no way by attending a public school have they relinquished that which is unalienable."

      Actually, if they're Christians, they DO "need to hide their faith in the shadows." Their own Jesus, and yours, said so. He did so explicitly and clearly in the Sermon on the Mount:

      "Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven. So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But when you give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving will be in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you. When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners [d]so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you." (Mt 6:1-6)

      Those are Jesus's words. Is his prohibition on public piety another of those teachings you willfully reject?

      You know, it's kind of funny how a cynical, godless agnostic heathen like myself knows your religion better than you do …

  • tjmccann3

    Response to PsyCop

    Re: "So you're saying the entire concept of "civil rights" is a fabrication? That no one has any? Really!? "

    I am saying that the post Civil War fabrication of Civil Rights, and the assumption of s federal authority to police those (civil) rights, is nothing but a corrupt fabrication of by government of an authority deliberately PROHIBITED to government by the Constitution. RIGHTS are specifically recognized, both in this country and historically, to prohibit government from acting to their denial. Specifically in this country, Rights are recognized as not originating from any grant by government, and therefore the government has no business awarding, recognizing or policing those rights.

    Civil Rights are nothing more than the government selectively choosing whose rights it will recognize and whose rights it will violate, a direct violation of rights themselves. I.e. when government claims there's a right to integrated schools, the government then forcibly violates the right of one person to freedom of assembly by forcing them to bus to another school, while allegedly recognizing a non-existent fabricated right of another to racial integration.

    Civil Rights are invariably a corruption. The exercise of real rights do not involve a compulsion upon any other individual.

    Re: Freedom of religion vs Freedom From Rellgion.

    No, freedom of religion only involves freedom of faith, the ablity to freely choose, nor not choose one's faith. There's no "of course it does" even associated with it. Freedom of faith is not freedom from Religion, which implies a person's ability to not be subjected to religion. Sorry, but that's not a freedom recognized in this country, nor provided by the Constitution. Under freedom of religion, you're entitled to be non religious. You' are not entitled to be free of religion in public.

    Re: "So you willfully reject Jesus' own teachings to you. Got it."

    No, moron. You said I was "one of THOSE people", an obvious indication to people of faith, most probably Christians. To which I replied with nothing to indicate that I was Christian at all, and in fact indicated that I have run out of cheeks. Your indicationg now that I reject Jesus' teachings shows only that you don't know those teachings. While Jesus' teachings indicate turning the other cheek, those teachings do not indicate doing so incessantly, and certainly not to the point of winning the Darwin Award. You might want to remember that the next time you seek to corner a Christian. What you've "got" is the mental capacity of the white rock at the end of the driveway.

    Re: "I see, by virtue of you accusing me of "dramatics" that you didn't get my point … which I clearly and unambiguously spelled out. Which is that you've just admitted there IS, in fact, "freedom from religion" in the US because you are, yourself, not willing to force your religion on me.

    I did not admit admit to any such thing! There is no sort of "freedom from religion" — no one is entitled to not be faced with or witness religious exercise.or expression in public. There is freedom of religion. Obviously you engage in false discussion tactics, or you have a very limited understanding.

    • tjmccann3

      Re: Football players and coaches having to "hide their faith in the shadows, " PsiCop indicated, "Actually, if they're Christians, they DO need to hide their faith in the shadows."

      PsyCop you should keep your misunderstanding of the Englaish language out of religious considerations. Astonishingly you began by imagining me to be a Christian, "one of those guys", and then astonishingly proceeded to try and tell me what the Bible says.

      NO, that Matthew 6 passage you cited does not indicate that Christians has to hide their faith. What it indicates is a caution ("Beware") against them showing displaying their faith to others for showmanship, "to be noticed by them", The reason being is that such overt displays of ones righteousness under the pretense of being devoutk is to falsely elevate oneself, and comes from only a desire to be "honored by men". It does not tell them to hide their faith.

      Yes, those are Jesus' words, but they do not have anything to do with a "prohibition", nor to do with "public piety", but rather a caution against displaying righteousness for personal gain.

      You know, it's kind of funny how a cynical godless agnostic heathen imagines himself a Gnostic on a wide array of things, even while clearly demonstrating his ignorance. But you add to this ignorance by compounding it with arrogance, pontificating on things you do not know, and do not revere, such as the Bible, and the Constitution. Your statist hypocrisy extends to professing a desire freedom, even while denying others their own. I'm reasonably certain that you dismiss religion even while being a fervent adherent to the pseudo-science of Global Warming. .

      Allow me to give you a clue: I am not like any con you've ever met. To progressives, I am the exception that violates their every rule. Assuming stereotypes with me will only put your wazoo out on a limb.
      .

      • Re: "NO, that Matthew 6 passage you cited does not indicate that Christians has to hide their faith."

        Yes it does. Saying it doesn't, is a lie. Does Jesus approve of you lying in his name?

        Re: "The reason being is that such overt displays of ones righteousness under the pretense of being devoutk is to falsely elevate oneself, and comes from only a desire to be "honored by men"."

        And precisely how does being baptized in front of a crowd at a public high school not constitute an "overt display of righteousness"? Are you really so stupid as to think that's not what it is? If you are, that's fine, but don't assume that of me. I'm not that dumb. I know what this was about. Yes, I've spent time in the deep south. I've also been a fundamentalist Christian. I know this game, from the inside.

        Re: "Your statist hypocrisy extends to professing a desire freedom, even while denying others their own."

        People ARE free to have baptisms. All the baptisms they want. They just have to do them on their own fucking property and on their own time. They can't do it on public property under the auspices of public office (and yes, public high school coaches truly are public officials regardless of whether or not you have the courage to admit they are).

        BTW I'm not a "statist" … whatever that means … I've found that angry Rightists throw that word at people whose opinions they dislike without really having any definition in mind. Rush Limbaugh used to love using it so they're trying to emulate him, I guess. That doesn't mean they have any clue what they're saying, they're just tossing scare words around carelessly in an effort to disparage people.

    • Re: "I am saying that the post Civil War fabrication of Civil Rights, and the assumption of s federal authority to police those (civil) rights, is nothing but a corrupt fabrication of by government of an authority deliberately PROHIBITED to government by the Constitution."

      So people have "civil rights," but there's no authority which can police them? You do realize, I hope, this effectively means no one has any civil rights (since a right that exists but cannot be enforced is functionally inseparable from a right that doesn't exist at all).

      Re; "Civil Rights are invariably a corruption."

      So only you have rights. No one else has any. Got it.

      Re: "You said I was 'one of THOSE people', an obvious indication to people of faith, most probably Christians."

      When I said you were "one of those people," I was talking about those who think there's no right to be non-religious in the US. I was clear about that when I said it. And you've been clear since then in affirming that statement was correct.

      Re: "While Jesus' teachings indicate turning the other cheek, those teachings do not indicate doing so incessantly, and certainly not to the point of winning the Darwin Award."

      Actually, Jesus DID, in fact, teach that you should so do "incessantly," because he made a general statement that one shoudl "turn the other cheek" and "hand over one's shirt in addition to one's coat" and even to "go two miles instead of just one." None of these teachings was accompanied by a caveat or any other limitation.

      Re: "There is no sort of 'freedom from religion' — no one is entitled to not be faced with or witness religious exercise.or expression in public."

      When you say that there's no "freedom from religion," you are in fact saying I am not free not to be part of a religion. That's what those words mean.

      Re: "There is freedom of religion."

      Yes, and according to you, only for those who are religious. Those who aren't, are fucked.