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Many Christians whine that we must "return to our 'Judaeo-Christian' roots." A study by Rodney Stark shows that church attendance has risen from 17 percent in 1776 to 65 percent in 1995.
Are things getting worse now that America is more religious than ever? Many blame our troubles on a mistaken notion that we've forsaken our "Christian roots." Could religion be making things worse?
At the presidential debate in San Diego, minister Ron Kite spoke of "founding fathers who possessed very strong Christian beliefs and godly principles." (Jack Kemp also invoked "traditional Judaeo-Christian values" in Florida.)
Neither candidate bothered disputing Rev. Kite's bold revision of American history. Bob Dole even rubber-stamped it with his comment, "And in addition to what you mentioned..." Dole also said "a constitutional amendment for voluntary prayer in school might be a great idea."
Clinton corrected that fallacy, saying, "we don't need a constitutional amendment for kids to pray." Indeed, no one can or should stop individual students from praying on school grounds.
Clinton did mention that ours is "the most religious great country in history" -- obliquely backing the Stark study. He also said that "we have the most religious freedom of any country in the world, including the freedom not to believe."
He discussed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act which, he tells us, "says the government's got to bend over backwards before we interfere with religious practice."
Every group, including the huge block of nonbelievers, is in the same boat except one: the Christians who insist on revising history. They are saying that America is a Christian nation that was founded in Christian principles. They want us to think America is their nation only -- not everybody's.
Nothing could be further from the truth; study American history and see.
See also: Repenting In -- Washington DC!? by Cliff Walker
See also: Americans More Church-Going Than Ever by Richard Morin
See also: Consumer Alert: WallBuilders' Shoddy Workmanship by Rob Boston
Copyright ©1996 Cliff Walker; Portland, Oregon