A US State can establish its own State religion

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Salty, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. Salty

    Salty
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    Actually, the purpose of this is not necessarily for discussion.

    Initially , I said that the Constitution says in the First Amendment " Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion..."

    Some time ago, I made that statement and a BB member posted that a different amendment changed that policy.

    I forgot who the poster was and precisely what he said. Would appreciate if you could re post.

    Thanks,

    Salty
     
  2. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Dunno, but it is dead right that unless a state constitution prohibits a state church there is nothing to stop it.

    Well, that is assuming we are going to actually use the constitution.
     
  3. Jerome

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    Fourteenth Amendment
    "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."
     
  4. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Don't see where that mentions a state church.
     
  5. Magnetic Poles

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    Doesn't have to. The 14th Amendment makes the states subject to the federal constitution. They may not infringe any rights at the state level that are guaranteed at the federal level.
     
  6. targus

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    What rights would be infringed upon by a state creating a state religion?
     
  7. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    I agree - there was a state church here for a long time, but no rights of those outside the church were restricted.
     
  8. Magnetic Poles

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    The right of free exercise, guaranteed in the First Amerndment of the US Consitution. Coercing people to support a state church infringes this right. It also violates the establishment clause. Pretty plain and simple.

    If you support a state religion, whose religion would you suggest?
     
  9. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    The establishment clause only applied to Congress. The state church here never coerced giving from the general populace.
     
  10. Magnetic Poles

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    And it has been held that by extension, the state legislatures are prohibited by the 14th. And I bet you pay taxes that go to the state church in Eire.
     
  11. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Nope - not even when it was the official state church

    Truth is - even if it could happen - it simply won't.
     
  12. Magnetic Poles

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    Good enough, but it isn't true in all nations with a state church.

    Funny thing...in Europe with its state religions, there is a higher percentage of atheism than in the USA with its marketplace of ideas and no officially sanctioned religion.
     
  13. NaasPreacher (C4K)

    NaasPreacher (C4K)
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    Are there any state churches left in Europe?
     
  14. Magnetic Poles

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    Yep. From Catholicism in the Vatican to Lutherans in Finland to the Orthodox in Greece, state religion abounds.

    LINK
     
  15. targus

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    Why would the establishment of a state church necessitate an infringement of free exercise?

    Are you assuming that such an establishment of a state church prohibit the practice of all other beliefs?

    As to your example of coercing support of a state church, I am assuming that you are talking about tax money going to run those state churches. By way of analogy - I have a freedom of speech. Does my tax money going to support public TV which expresses opinons contrary to my own also violate my rights?
     
  16. targus

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    I dno't know that I would call Catholicism the state church of the Vatican. After all the Vatican is not a country in a sense that would be relevant to this discussion.

    Are citizens of Finland compelled to practice as Lutherans? Or may they attend the denomination of their choice?

    Same question concerning Greece.
     
  17. Jim1999

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    In England, the Church of England is officially the state church. The Queen is the head of that church, and the Archbishop is chosen by the Queen and the Prime Minister (who must be Anglican). It does not require all citizens to be Anglican.

    In Canada, the Anglican Church was the unofficial state church, some years ago. Even chaplains in the Armed Services, regardless of denomination, had to follow the Anglican form of service. That has changed over the years and now chaplains are either Protestant or Roman Catholic. The churches never were financed by the parliament nor controlled.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  18. Salty

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    When I was in Germany, taxes did help support the churches - if I remember correctly - Luthernan, Rom Catholic, and free evangelical - , or you could choose not to have your taxes go to the church, but then you would not recieve any of the church benfits.

    OH, Americians on military orders did not have to pay the church tax.
     
  19. Alcott

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    The Prime Minister must be Anglican? That's not what I've always read... only the reigning monarch must belong to the C of E, and every one since James II, who tried to make Catholicism the official state church again, has been C of E. But I think after Lizzy croaks, changes are coming in all that ridiculously expensive nonsense.
     
  20. JustChristian

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    Do you support state religions?
     

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