Commentary: The Rise of the New State Church

Saint Marys Cathedral, Natchez, United States

The United States is historically a Christian country, that is, it was founded by Christians and its population remains largely Christian to this day. The speeches and statements of our presidents, our official holidays, the prayers that are said before the opening of Congress and the Supreme Court, the imagery we see on official buildings all attest to the religious, indeed Christian, foundation of our nation. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court in an 1892 decision declared explicitly that “we are a Christian nation.”

Nevertheless, at least until recent days, Americans have understood that we live in a pluralistic society where Protestants, Catholics, Jews, even atheists, were equal before each other and equal before the law. There was no official church at the federal level that would require belief, assent, or obedience. This is not to say that there have not been dark times in our history when we failed to live up to our ideals. Catholics may recall times when our churches were burned and there were riots against us. But the highest American aspiration has always been that all should be treated equally, that a Jew should get the same treatment in a court of law as a Methodist or a Muslim.

Our twin understanding of our country’s deep religious roots coupled with an ideal of religious freedom grew out of the English tradition of religious toleration. The English had an official state church, but the English also recognized the importance of providing dissenters with some measure of freedom. The Act of Toleration of 1689 provided this freedom.

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Itxu Díaz Commentary: Dear America, Preserve These Things for the Love of God!

Itxu Diaz

They say that in Europe our things are tiny and that in America your things are super-sized, and that’s a dangerous statement, prone to error when referring to anything other than the size of our Coca-Colas.

Any further debate could lead to a conflict of unprecedented proportions and distract us from the real issue: Here in Europe we are jealous of a lot of what you have in the United States of America. In particular, three things: God, liberty and civil society. In the social democratic Europe we live in, these three pillars have all but disappeared like the sun setting at the dusk of a civilization. In their stead we are left with secularism, conditional freedom and an all-encompassing state that demands money from us day and night in the form of taxes, while all we can do is shrug our shoulders, pay up and say, as did Bartleby: “I’d prefer no to.”

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Commentary: 1970’s Hit ‘Baker Street’ and the Loneliness of Modernity Overtaking the Millennial Generation

By Jon Miltimore I was recently in a bar having dinner with a friend when Gerry Rafferty’s hit 1978 song “Baker Street” came on. When my friend mentioned that he loved the song, I agreed and noted the song’s powerful lyrics. “Really?” he responded. “I never paid much attention to the…

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