Tag Archives: Justice Joseph Story

Founding Fathers Supported Islam?

Founding Fathers Supported Islam?

by Bill Lockwood

President Obama has jumped the gun. He had hoped that by now his Common Core education standards would have already dumbed-down Americans to the point that they know nothing of our own history nor would they be able to read the Koran for themselves. So he lectured America this week from a Baltimore mosque that “Islam has always been a part of America.”

Visiting the Islamic Society of Baltimore on Wednesday, Obama eagerly assured Muslims that the dramatic rise in Islamic bloody terror against Christians and non-Muslims around the world should not in turn cause suspicion of Islam. Anti-Muslim bias and ill-feeling must be denounced, regardless of how much infidel blood flows at the hands of Muslims.

Within his remarks Obama showed what purposeful brainwashing can do to a mind. To support his thesis that Islam has always been woven into the fabric of America he pointed out (1) That the religion of many African slaves brought to America in the 17th century was Islam; (2) That Thomas Jefferson wanted the “Islamic” religion to be protected as was other religions, and; (3) That Jefferson and John Adams had their own copies of the Koran. It is difficult to believe that any person considers these sophomoric suggestions as proof that somehow “Islam has been woven into the fabric of America from the beginning,” let alone a president who was supposedly Harvard-trained. Stunning.

Regarding Jefferson’s view of Islam, consider that even Columbia-degreed Denise Spellberg, author of Thomas Jefferson and the Quran: Islam and the Founders, reminds us that the Founders believed both Catholicism and Islam were violent religions and that Jefferson himself had a “personal disdain” for Islam. Jefferson knew from his experience as Minister to France that Islam was spread by the sword.

In spite of his disdain, Jefferson urged “toleration” toward individual Muslims who may be in America. However, to equate this toleration to “Muslims being a part of the fabric” or “founding” of America insults intelligence. Further, that Jefferson and Adams owned a copy of the Koran does not mean they appreciated any of Muhammed’s teachings any more than owning a copy of Dreams From My Father means anyone likes the content.

Perhaps Obama, while he is on Thomas Jefferson—who launched America’s first war against Muslim Barbary Coast Pirates–will announce to the public what Jefferson himself reported to John Jay and to the Congress regarding Islam. He learned it directly from the Tripoli Ambassador Sidi Haji Abdrahaman. The ambassador answered us that [the right of piracy] was founded upon on the laws of the Prophet, that it was written in their Koran, that all nations who should not have answered their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war upon them wherever they could be found, and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners, and that every Musselman who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise.

Other Founders

What exactly did the Founders of America think of Islam? Not only did they eschew it, but were outspoken that CHRISTIANITY is the great basis upon our free republic rests. That the liberty to even be in America while believing Muhammad’s Koran is traceable solely to Christian concepts of freedom—it certainly does not work the other way around.

The Father of American jurisprudence, Justice Joseph Story, in his Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States, “Indeed, in a republic, there would seem to be a peculiar propriety in viewing the Christian religion, as the great basis, on which it must rest for its support and permanence, if it be, what it has ever been deemed by its truest friends to be, the religion of liberty.” Story went on to point out that not only did the Founders as a whole wish Christianity to receive “encouragement” from the state, but that the real object of the First Amendment “was not to countenance, much less advance Mahometanism, or Judaism, or infidelity by prostrating Christianity …”

James Iredell, a U.S. Supreme Court judge appointed by George Washington, made the same point in 1788. But it is objected that the people of America may perhaps choose representatives who have no religion at all, and that pagans and Mahometans may be admitted into offices … But it is never to be supposed that the people of America will trust their dearest rights to persons who have no religion at all, or a religion materially different from their own.

Samuel Johnston, governor of North Carolina and member of the Constitution ratifying convention in 1788, suggested that if Muslims ever became officials of the United States that it would be “an unfortunate” event and could only happen if people laid aside the Christian religion altogether. He likened this, as did other Founders, to having elected officials who were devoid of religion completely. Similar quotations could be multiplied many times over. The Founding generation, far from remotely supposing that Islam was “woven into the fabric” of our nation, disdained it as a violent religion.

Obama’s reminder that some of the African slaves brought to America is likely the truth. What he refuses to acknowledge, however, is that not one of those African slave came to America without the complicity of Muslim slave traders on the African continent. The Koran not only endorses slavery, but Muhammed himself, the epitome of what a Muslim should be, personally owned black slaves.

It is beyond sad to witness the occupant of the Oval Office so stultify his intelligence by re-writing history. But it is a forecast of what his Common Core standards have in mind for all students.

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Scalia, God and the Constitution

Scalia, God and the Constitution

by Bill Lockwood

Visiting a suburb of New Orleans this month Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia told an audience that though it was that the United States was founded without an official “established church,” it was never intended to be “neutral” toward religion itself. It is “absurd,” said Scalia, to think the Constitution bans the government from supporting religion.

More than that. There is “no place” for radical secularism in our constitutional tradition, he said. “To be sure, you can’t favor one denomination over another but can’t favor religion over non-religion?” [emp. added]
Scalia noted that favoring religion was common practice in the United States until the 1960’s when “activist judges” began imposing their own ideas. Atheists should not try, per the judge, to “cram” secularism “down the throats of an American people that has always honored God on the pretext that the Constitution requires it.”

Justice Scalia is exactly right in this interpretation of the Constitution and the place of religion. I would, however, add that it is not merely “religion” which has a place in our society, but Christianity itself. Benjamin Morris, in his magnum opus work, Christian Life and Character of the Civil Institutions of the Unites States, summarizes the Founders’ intention: Christianity is the principle and all-pervading element, the deepest and most solid foundation, of all our civil institutions. It is the religion of the people—the national religion; but we have neither an established church nor an established religion.

John Jay, one of the authors of the Federalist Papers referred to this as a “Christian Nation” and Roger Sherman wrote to one of his acquaintances in 1790 pointing out that “his faith in the new republic was largely because he felt it was founded upon Christianity as he understood it.” Similar sentiments from the Founding generation could be added almost endlessly.

Justice Joseph Story, who spent 34 years on the Supreme Court and founded Harvard Law School even went so far as to remark that concept of “neutrality” in religious matters, to which modern society goosesteps and Scalia criticizes, “would have created universal disapprobation, if not universal indignation” had it been suggested in early America.

First Amendment
What then is the meaning of the First Amendment that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”? “Establishment of religion” simply refers to “National denomination” in the sense of an official State Church supported by taxes. “Congress” singles out the “federal government.” The Federal Government was to establish no National Denomination. Remembering that both Thomas Jefferson and James Madison encouraged future generations to interpret the Constitution according to its original intent, and that that ALONE is the “legitimate Constitution,” how do we know that the forbidding of a National Denomination by the Federal Government is the meaning of the First Amendment?

George Mason, the father of the Bill of Rights, commented that “no particular sect or society of Christians ought to be favored or established by law in preference to others.” Madison himself commented upon the First Amendment: “…nor shall any national religion be established.” In the Annals of Congress (June 8, 1789 to September 25, 1789) is noted this: “August 15, 1789: Mr. Peter Sylvester of New York had some doubts … He feared it [First Amendment] might be thought to have a tendency to abolish religion altogether.” Well might he fear, knowing the onslaught of atheists and secularists throughout history to deny simple truths!

In response to Sylvester, Elbridge Gerry suggested in Congress that the First Amendment would better read, “[N]o religious doctrine shall be established by law.” But that was not quite broad enough to meet the Founders’ intention. Fisher Aimes, who authored the final version of the Amendment, offered this: “Congress will not make any law establishing any religious denomination.” One version even added the words “in preference to others” to the clause “religious denomination.” The final draft simply reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion …” It is crystal clear what these great minds desired.

Capitalizing on ignorance of the people plus animus to Christianity, modernists which fill the press as well as Congress wish us to be satisfied that our Constitution demands the government to be “neutral” between atheism and theism, between Christianity and Islam. Nonsense. Justice Scalia is correct. Legally speaking, in the context of the Constitution, there is no place for “secularism.”

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