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Where is the "Telephone Clause" in the Constitution?

By Nancy Salvato
web posted December 6, 2004

My husband and I were just fuming the other day, when we both simultaneously read an article about a principal who would not permit a teacher to use The Declaration of Independence in his classroom because God was mentioned in the document. My husband was so mad that he immediately wrote a piece about the incident, in which he suggested that it was treason to force a teacher to exclude our founding documents from the curriculum. My colleague had an interesting take on the situation, as well. He suggested that if we get our divine right to freedom from God, how can we invalidate God in our Constitution, the document that protects that divine right?

Well, I don't really believe that it was ever intended that we exclude God from our schools or public institutions. What leads me to believe this are first source materials from our founders and framers, that typically read like the following passage from the Dec. 3rd American Minute with Bill Federer. "President Thomas Jefferson, author of the phrase "Separation of church and state," asked Congress to ratify a treaty with the Kaskaskia Indians, which they did this day, December 3, 1803. It stated: "And whereas the greater part of the said tribe have been baptized and received into the Catholic Church, to which they are much attached, the United States will give annually, for seven years, one hundred dollars toward the support of a priest of that religion, who will engage to perform for said tribe the duties of his office, and also to instruct as many of their children as possible, in the rudiments of literature." The treaty, signed by Jefferson, concluded: "The United States will further give the sum of three hundred dollars to assist the said tribe" in creating a church."

What I believe is that the founding fathers, (yes I still think of them as founding fathers), didn't want one religion to take precedence over any other belief system. It was more about making sure that there wasn't a state denomination that would create favoritism toward those of one particular religious persuasion.

When things always seem to have been a certain way, it doesn't always occur to a person to question their validity. That is how I would describe the idea that there is supposed to be a separation of church and state. It's only been since l965 that we have seen federal money going to K-12 education, beginning with an NEA proposed legislation, the Murray-Metcalf Bill – which resulted in federal aid to the school system, money not to find its way to independent religious schools.

The ACLU, in some circles sarcastically referred to as the American Communist Lawyers Union, works diligently to tear apart the citizens of our country from our Judeo-Christian roots. There goal is to erode the connection between our governing principals and a higher power. They are relentless in their fight to undermine the protections guaranteed in our Constitution under the guise that they are fighting for our individual rights. They are promoting a secular global agenda that could eventually erase our history. Worse than that, our citizens are at risk from the overthrow of our Democratic ideals by an ever widening infiltration of Socialist practices. In the worst scenario, we may not be able to repel a physical invasion by those hostile to our culture and ideals; that will stop at nothing to annihilate us. "So long as our borders are unsecured and our enforcement hamstrung by the ACLU, we are in extreme danger," said another writing colleague, Jud Cox.

According to Joseph Farah, the government is actually funding the ACLU court battles to, "end taxpayer support of religious groups" (as they promote their goal) through a section of the United States Code which, "permits judges to award attorney fees to plaintiffs in civil-rights cases brought against local governments, thereby putting the taxpayers on the hook and oftentimes funneling public money to the ACLU."In other words, "if the municipality loses, the city's taxpayers are often forced to pay ACLU attorneys." This would explain why so many of these types of cases are filed by ACLU lawyers.

It would not be out of line to say that just about every demographic group is awarded preferential treatment in the public domain, except those of Judeo Christian influence. The ACLU even looks out for pedophiles and defends those waging Jihad against our citizens.

The time has come to defend ourselves against those who propagate the notion that the separation of church and state is in the Constitution. It's time to call into question the practice of citing precedents, drawn from precedents, drawn from precedents, when court justices make decisions about something as serious as the majority belief system and instead, they should be required to formulate a decision based on the original intent of those who drafted our system of government. The idea of the document was to protect our freedoms – freedom to worship where and when we please.

To erase the existence of religious symbols and ideas in a public institution, based on the separation of church and state (words that don't exist in the Constitution), is a lot like playing telephone and believing that what the person at the end of the line heard even remotely resembled the original statement. Telephone is a child's game. This is an adult matter, of our very existence –as we know it. Our Constitution isn't a fairy tale, subject to the revision of who is telling it. It is the guarantor of our liberty and should be revered as such!

Nancy Salvato is a Research Associate with Americans for Limited Government. She is an experienced educator and an independent contractor with Prism Educational Consulting. She serves as Educational Liaison for Illinois' 23rd Senatorial District. She works nationally and locally furthering the cause of Civic Education. Her writing is widely published on the internet and occasionally in print venues such as the Washington Times. Her opinions have been heard on select radio programs across the nation. Additionally, her writing has been recognized by the US Secretary of Education. Copyright © Nancy Salvato 2004

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