Thomas forgets Founders had fears about religion

Cal Thomas' column, “What does generation devoid of values, God mean for nation?” (Sept. 3), laments, among other things what he sees correctly as growing secularization among younger people. He errs, however in his assertion that “the Founders" were “committed to religion." The exact opposite is true. The writings of Jefferson, Madison, Franklin, Hamilton, and Mason stress the need to keep religion and public affairs strictly separated. They feared the intrusion of sectarian religion into the public's affairs, having been aware of the European religious wars of the 17th Century, and of the background in England and Colonial America of religious domination of communal life.

Thomas speaks of the decay of religious belief by younger people who "escape correction"(!) By whom, I wonder, and to what agreed upon form of correctness? Does he profess to "know" the answer? The arrogance he betrays is exactly what the Founders worried about so much that the word “God" does not appear in our Constitution. No accident, this.

They created a document that still stands as a model for the world. Religion is a private matter and should be held apart from public policy to protect government from it and protect it from government. If religious faith is less attractive to the younger generation, the reason may be its waning relevance to contemporary life. 

Herbert Ross




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