This research explores church-state relations as it seems highly paradoxical that the US Constitution provides for a strict separation of Church and State yet religious considerations have a major impact on the country’s public life…
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American attitudes concerning church-state relations are subject to two conflicting forces. First, Americans are very religious. In comparison with citizens of other industrialized nations, Americans report an extraordinarily high degree of religious belief, association, and practice. This means that, at times, there is a strong enticement on the part of some citizens to transform their religious principles into public policy. Specifically, if religion is a significant influence in a citizen's life, that citizen seems more probable to seek government support of religiously based values. Second, and perhaps, on the contrary, the notion of a constitutional "separation of church and state" (a phrase that appears nowhere in the U.S. Constitution) is an influential symbol in American political discourse. Though there is little agreement relating to the precise meaning of such separation, the principle itself is not normally challenged in American politics. Thus, Separation of church and state was definitely not an invention of the Enlightenment political theory that might have prompted similar thoughts in the mind of the respected Thomas Jefferson. Certainly, it misleads to analyze the lively experiment in political terms at all, for the Providence regime was just as certainly and decisively rooted in Protestant theologies as was the Puritans city on a hill.The encompassing description of liberty of conscience was the systematizing principle of society, and it produced a kind of severance of church and state. It is thus significant to keep in mind that the cleavage was meant to protect the church and the soul from the debasing influence of the magistrate, to protect the garden of the church from corruption in the boondocks of the world. The quest for spiritual purity quite factually led into the political realm, where he was basically traditional, if not authoritarian.
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In the US, language barriers became acute with the influx of refugees and the rise in immigrants in the country. The diversity of languages spoken by people in the US has increased rapidly over the past few years. Language is also a barrier because translation services requires funding, the levels of which are often not sufficient.
At the time of the inclusion of this provision in the American constitution, it was seen as a revolutionary and progressive policy to adopt. 2- Where did it originate? Is it the US constitution, what did Thomas Jefferson mean when he spoke of maintaining "a wall of separation between church and state?
The secular concerns of the civil government often go against the mystical preoccupation of religion. Close ties between the church and the state is an alien concept for countries like the United States, a political system that values their separation. But this is not to say that it is not uncommon in other parts of the world.
There are different reasons why people want a separation of church and state. The first reason is because the rights of the minority will probably be violated by the majority meaning members of a majority religion are favored by the state often while the minority religion are persecuted, harassed and socially shunned.
The enshrining of this separation in the constitution led to a high proliferation of religious activities in the country. With a high number of religious people in America today, the government plays no role in religion; no funding, no endorsements and no prohibitions (ADL, Para 2).
For example: some may argue that separation of state and religion means that the state or the government should not intervene in each other’s issue and they are two different things (Corbett 220). Others might argue that the separation of state and church should be seen in the context of law making and legislative operations.
(Owen 493) Though the language of the First Amendment seems clear enough on the issue of establishment and Free Exercise, the notion of "strict separation" is cloudier. The history of the debate about the role of religion often seeks to attribute particular intentions to the founding framers based on their political and religious belief and imposing those beliefs on the language of the constitution.
This means that, at times, there is a strong enticement on the part of some citizens to transform their religious principles into public policy. Specifically, if religion is a significant influence in a citizen's life, that citizen seems more probable to seek government support of religiously based values.
The debates mainly arose due to the notion that there has been a separation between the Church and State in past, which is currently being eliminated. Some religious groups feel that the State is imposing other religious beliefs on them. This essay focuses on the issue of separation of State and Church.
3 Pages(750 words)Thesis
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