Re: NBC & The U.S. Open: Pledge of Allegiance
The 1st amendment grants us freedom of religion, not freedom from religion. There is a difference. The separation of church and state, though not a term used in the constitution, was a phrase used by Thomas Jefferson and others. It was meant to keep the government from meddling in church affairs moreso than the church meddling in governmental affairs. It seems some in our country takes the opposite view and thinks the 1st amendment means that any mention of God is forbidden in public, and is an assault on their rights if mentioned, or worshiped in public. This was NEVER the intention of the framers of the constitution, and their individual writings comfirm this.
The very wording: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof ", says it very plainly. It, like the rest of the Bill of Rights, is a restriction placed on government, not the people. It is sad that we have allowed our rights to be eroded by certain members of our society.
Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man. Jefferson's "Commonplace Book," 1774_1776, quoting from On Crimes and Punishment, by criminologist Cesare Beccaria, 1764