Anti-God group erects bizarre display to compete with Nativity scene in Florida’s Capitol

The Christian group that unveiled a Nativity scene in Florida’s Capitol on Tuesday took it in stride Friday when an atheist organization erected its own display in the rotunda, wishing passersby a “Happy Winter Solstice.”

“It’s their right to do that, but am I shaking in my boots?” said Pam Olsen, executive director of the International House of Prayer Tallahassee. “No.”

atheistscapitol1206In a news release, the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s explained the display – about the size and shape of a grade school bicycle rack – is meant to mark the “rebirth” of the sun in the northern hemisphere.

It depicts Ben Franklin, the Statue of Liberty, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and the Bill of Rights and reads:

“At this season of the Winter Solstice, we celebrate the birth of the Unconquered Sun — the TRUE reason for the season. As Americans, let us also honor the birth of our Bill of Rights, which reminds us there can be no freedom OF religion, without having freedom FROM religion in government.”

Gary Whittenberger, a Tallahassee resident and member of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, said the display was meant as alternative, secular viewpoint to balance the Christian and Jewish symbols on display during the holiday season.

“We prefer that there not be any religious display at the Capitol, but since the state decided to … make it an open forum, we that thought was a good move,” he told BizPac Review Friday. “I’m glad the state of Florida has taken a more open-minded view.”

The Freedom From Religion’s display is just across the rotunda from a Nativity scene that was unveiled Tuesday by the Florida Prayer Network, in a ceremony that mixed ancient scripture and prayer, traditional Christmas carols and a decidedly modern battle between church and state in the form of the Obama administration’s attempts to force Christian companies like Hobby Lobby to violate their religious beliefs.

Hobby Lobby is a sponsor of the rotunda Nativity scene. It’s fighting a very real battle with the White House for religious freedom in this country.

“They’re fighting for their rights as a Christian company,” Olsen said at Tuesday’s ceremony. “We’re fighting for religious freedom.”

On Friday, Olsen wasn’t bothered by the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s allusion to the Bill of rights and apparent competition with her group’s Nativity scene.

“The reality is, they don’t like God,” she said. “They have no understanding of the Founding Fathers.”

But Whittenberger said his group has nothing against a Supreme Deity.

“Most of our members are non-religious, atheists or agnostics,” he said. “They would not say they hate God. It would be like saying they hate unicorns, because unicorns do not exist.”

 

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About Joe Saunders

Joe Saunders, a 25-year newspaper veteran, is a staff writer and editor for BizPac Review who lives in Tallahassee and covers capital and Florida politics. Email Joe at jpjsaunders@gmail.com.

  • Myke46

    So why are they not protesting unicorns?I find it hard to believe that people go so far out of their way to try to undermine and belittle Christian beliefs and principles just simply because they don’t happen to agree with them(more to it?)why don’t they set up their crap up during whatever muslims do to commemorate Muhamed’s birth?

    • ranchdancer

      they don’t have the balls to protest anything the Muslims do.. including implementing Sharia to many counties in this country.

      • fjpor

        Do you not have anything better than alluding to “sharia law” for each and every happening? If you – once again – think about it, sharia law is more in keeping with religious folk that it is with non-religious

      • Thomas Meacham

        If there were muslims erecting a religious monument in the Capitol rotunda, we’s be all over it. Oddly, they are not doing that and we have no cause to protest them. If the fundamentalist Christians wrote the laws without respect to the First Amendment, it would be difficult to distinguish from Sharia. We do not want to live under the tyranny of either of them.

    • Cynthia J. McCoy

      Because Christians won’t kill them!!!!!!!

      • jpor

        Bombing abortion clinics, killing abortion doctors, christians do kill. Plus, almost EVERY serial killer says they did it in the name of god or jeebus. Take your pick.

        • Samuel Hauser

          NOT IN GOD WORD.

    • fjpor

      No, Myke46, “they” are not trying to undermine or belittle christian beliefs – just simply have equal access to property that is paid for and supported by taxpayer funding. If this nativity scene had been set up at a church, on private property or at a religious school it would have been not only allowed but also not even news. The differences come when religion steps over the line of separation of state and church with a display in a government building. Think about it. What do you not understand about that separation? Seem pretty simple to me but then, reason is not that easy for some.

      • Warren

        Not only do we support the separation of church and state, which is a right provisioned in the first Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, but we also support the right to chose any religion you wish as long as you don’t hurt anyone. This is provisioned in the First Amendment also. Both are in the Establishment Clause of the amendment which reads:

        “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;”

        You can have freedom FOR religions without the freedom FROM religion.

      • Samuel Hauser

        THE KINGS JAMES BIBLE HAS TO BE TAUGHT BY A SCHOLAR OF THE WORD MOST PREACHER DON’T HAVE THE WORD RIGHT AFTER MANY YEARS OF STUDY I KNOW THIS FOR A FACT.

      • James Finlay

        In reality there is no such thing as separation of church and state in the constitution. The meaning of the first amendment has been skewed by the Supreme Court
        Madison contended “Because if Religion be exempt from the authority of the Society at large, still less can it be subject to that of the Legislative Body.”[66] Several years later he wrote of “total separation of the church from the state.”[67] “Strongly guarded as is the separation between Religion & Govt in the Constitution of the United States”, Madison wrote,[68] and he declared, “practical distinction between Religion and Civil Government is essential to the purity of both, and as guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States.”[69] In a letter to Edward Livingston Madison further expanded, “We are teaching the world the great truth that Govts. do better without Kings & Nobles than with them. The merit will be doubled by the other lesson that Religion flourishes in greater purity, without than with the aid of Govt.”[70] This attitude is further reflected in the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, originally authored by Jefferson and championed by Madison, and guaranteeing that no one may be compelled to finance any religion or denomination.

        • Thomas Meacham

          James, I’m not sure the point you make with respect to who gets to put religious monuments in the Capitol, and who doesn’t. The Anti-Federalist, Thomas Jefferson helped write the establishment clause of the First Amendment (and similar wording in the Virginia Constitution) and on more than one occasion he made it plainly clear that he intended it to be “a wall of separation between church and state.” (see his letter to the Danbury Baptists). THAT was the basis for the Supreme Court findings. I don’t know why you failed to mention except it seems not to be in line with your thesis.

    • jpor

      Why do we not protest muslim displays? THERE ARE NONE!

    • Samuel Hauser

      YOU NEED TO SEARCH OUT WHAT IS IN THE HEBREW YOU WILL FIND IT LIKE TOMORROW NEWSPAPPER

    • Nora Barringer

      They are out to destroy the American heritage!!! Our freedom is what brought them here and they are using it against us to change the US into what they want it to be!!! If we are to have any type of compromise to allow for harmony we must all have a continued religious freedom. The atheists and agnostics say they aren’t religious but this is their beliefs so, it is their religion!! We need to incorporate all religions into some type of acknowledged documentation to allow everyone to be equally represented within the US for their beliefs so that no one would feel like the other religions are being represented over their own. We must be able to coincide with one another or the world we know is going to fall apart!!!

      • Thomas Meacham

        Um… How are you not exercising your freedom, there, Nora?

      • RealityBites

        Yeah, right. You can still set up displays anywhere you choose. They are just wanting the same equal access. NO one is trying to ruin your life, just making their views known also

    • Thomas Meacham

      No one is worshiping unicorns openly in the halls of government so we have no beef with unicorn worship. Interesting that you are equating Christianity with unicorns. I approve.

    • Charles M Taylor

      You really have no clue what this is about, do you? Either ALL belief systems are allowed representation on government grounds or NONE are. It’s really as simple as that.

      • RealityBites

        Yep, unfortunately some seem to want the atheists shunned from our society. Oh well America is large enough for all different views.

    • jadedcorliss

      Unicorns aren’t screwing up science, politics, and LGBT in the US.

  • ADELE

    TOO MUCH TIME ON THEIR HANDS

    • Cynthia J. McCoy

      They have evil in their hearts. And they are looking to spread it around.

      • fjpor

        Says she who believes in a book serving up a talking snake, burning in hell for eternity if you disobey your god and on and on… Really?

        • Samuel Hauser

          HELL IS MOST OF THE TIME GRAVE AS TRANSLATED IN THE NEW TESTEMENT IT IS THE GARBAGE PIT BOUGHT WITH THE 30 PICES OF SILVER THE PRICE OF A SLAVE YOU PEOPLE NEED TO STUDY THE WORD.

          • Doug

            Samuel you are very passionate but so garbled it’s almost unreadable.

      • RealityBites

        Wrong. They have the same rights as other Americans do to make their views known also. NO ONE is trying to convert you, religions do that.

    • RealityBites

      NO, they are just exercising their right as Americans.

  • car333

    What kind of idiots would fight to take away something that they say doesn’t exist in the first place.

    • http://kankurosdoll.deviantart.com/ Grimora

      The devils only power is to spread unbelief and sinful ways. He has no real power, but gets bigger when people turn away from God and Jesus.

      • Samuel Hauser

        READ EZEKIEL 28. HE IS THE MOST POWERFUL CREATED BY GOD HE WENT BAD READ YOU WILL SEE.

        • http://kankurosdoll.deviantart.com/ Grimora

          Revelations says he will be ultimately destroyed in the end, regardless of how “powerful” he is. God knows it, He told us, and I believe Him.

      • Thomas Meacham

        You know that’s a bunch of superstition. It’s not real. The shunning you’ll get if you pull out now is very real, however.

    • fjpor

      Don’t see anyone trying to take something away – just people who believe in our Constitution and total separation of state and church which religions apparently do not understand. If they did they would be satisfied with placing their religious icons on their own property and not that of taxpayer supported (many of whom are not religious) areas. Because the continued intrusion on public property by religions continues, the numbers and types of displays which will accompany the nativity scene will grow and may just include Muslim, Wiccan, Hindi, etc symbols, too. Each having a right of equal access since the government had deemed that area a free speech area. Can’t have it reserved for only one or even two groups.

      • car333

        People like you is the big problem spewing your anti God agenda. Just in case you didn’t know this country was based on Christian beliefs, not Muslim, Hindi, atheist.

        • Samuel Hauser

          THE CONSITUTION WAS BACED ON THE WORD OF GOD.

          • Thomas Meacham

            And what do you bace that conclusion on? Please quote the Constitution where it does so.

          • RealityBites

            It doesn’t, don’t worry

          • Detfan1

            Here you go . . . .

            Webster’s contribution to American constitutionalism

            In the decade following America’s independence, Noah Webster sought to produce a strong union among the newly independent American states. He saw that education was a key means of accomplishing this and wrote three textbooks — Speller (1783), Grammar (1784), and Reader (1785) — that provided a content that was uniquely American, and also principles that were necessary to support the nation. His textbooks and educational reforms were intended to strengthen the unity among the American people, which would strengthen their external union. Webster saw his work to bring a standardization to the American English language as a means to unify the American people because he felt the union would be strong as the people spoke the same language. In his Sketches of American Policy (1785) he was one of the first (if not the first) to put in print a plan for a new national government. Webster believed his proposals contained “the first distinct proposal, made through the medium of the press, for a new constitution of the United States.” Webster promoted his ideas as he traveled throughout the colonies. He visited George Washington and left a copy of his booklet with him, who in turn showed it to James Madison. These men carried Webster’s ideas for a new form of national government with them when they participated in forming the United States Constitution during the summer of 1787. Webster had seen the weakness of the national government under the Articles of

            Confederation when he attempted to secure copyright legislation to protect his textbooks. Though agreeing with Webster’s policy, the Congress was unable to enact copyright legislation under the provisions of the Articles and so Webster had to travel to all the states to promote copyright legislation laws.

            Copyright legislation was just one of many of Webster’s ideas there were incorporated into the United States Constitution. Not only had Washington and Madison read his Sketches, but virtually every man who participated in the convention read it as well. Most of the principles Webster presented for creating a new government were put into the Constitution by the framers. His provisions included a surrender of a degree of state sovereignty to a stronger Congress, “a supreme power at the head of the union,” “all power is vested in the people,” equal representation of the states in Congress, and congressional power to regulate and impose duties on interstate commerce. Webster also proposed the abolition of slavery. Most of his ideas were not original. He was simply drawing from the best available sources and included many of the documents examined above, including the Declaration of Independence and various state constitutions (especially Connecticut’s). Washington, Hamilton and others had presented various ideas for a new government, yet Webster was the first to give an overall framework. Madison and others acknowledged Webster’s key role. New York State Chief Justice James Kent said Webster was “the first man who proposed the present government” of the United States.

            The document that was approved by the Constitutional Convention in September 1787 and sent to the states for ratification had both a Christian power and form— a Christian power because the source of the Founders ideas primarily came from the Bible. The brief summary of the development of ideas of liberty given above reveal this to be the case, plus this is affirmed by a direct examination of the source of their political ideas. A study was published in The American Political Science Review that listed the citations from about 15,000 political documents written by the Founders between 1760 and 1805. By far the most quoted source in these political documents was the Bible—34% of all citations. The great majority of the remaining sources were from writers with biblical ideas. In addition, almost every one of the Founders were Christians who had a biblical worldview. Even the 2 or 3 non-professing Christians at the Convention had a biblical view of life. (Franklin is the most famous of these. His call for prayer at the Constitutional Convention reveals his belief in God’s active involvement in His creation.) The form of the Constitution is Christian as well; that is, the framework of the document reflects a Christian view of man and government. These general ideas include representative government, the separation of powers, the rule of law, and the unique concept of federalism. The Preamble to the Constitution contains a good summary of the biblical purpose of civil government. The document directly acknowledges God in the requirement of an oath of office (Article 6), in recognizing the Christian Sabbath (Article 1, section 7, paragraph 2), and in dating itself “in the year of our Lord” (Article 7).91 The first ten amendments to the Constitution were ratified in 1791. The individual liberties secured in this Bill of Rights were developed out of Christian civilization and were derived from the Bible and a biblical understanding of unalienable rights. These ideas were not new, but, as we have seen, were developed over many centuries. To our Founders, the primary purpose of civil government is to protect the citizens’ God-given rights. Lack of a listing of these rights in the original Constitution caused many to oppose ratifying it. Many of those who voted to ratify it in various states did so only after being assured a Bill of Rights would be added.

            During the summer of the Constitutional Convention Webster was living in Philadelphia and he had numerous discussions with many of the delegates. Near the close of the convention, Webster was asked by one of the delegates to write a paper in support of the new constitution as a means of encouraging ratification by the states. His 55 page essay — An Examination into the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution Proposed by the Late Convention Held at Philadelphia— was completed in about a month, and then was printed and distributed widely. It played an important part in assuring the ratification of the new constitution. In Examination Webster compares the Constitution to “the promulgation of the Jewish laws at Mount Sinai.” He wrote the “the origin of the AMERICAN REPUBLIC is distinguished by peculiar circumstances. Other nations have been driven together by fear and necessity. . . . In the formation of our constitution the wisdom of all ages is collected—the legislators of antiquity are consulted, as well as the opinions and interests of the millions who are concerned. In short, it is an empire of reason.

            As we have examined the development of ideas of liberty and constitutional principles, we have seen that the greatest “wisdom of the ages” affecting civil documents of liberty has arisen from the Christian religion and the precepts of the Bible. This is the primary source of American constitutionalism, and consequently, civil liberty throughout the world. Such an understanding must be transferred to all Americans in this and future generations if liberty is to be maintained. Noah Webster had a vision for educating all Americans, and posterity, in principles of liberty. His entire life was devoted to fulfilling this end. His Speller of 1794 had a Federal catechism and was the first text to educate Americans in the form of our government. His History of the United States taught fundamental governmental principles. His textbooks also contained writings of the best of American literature which he intended to inspire youth with “a love of virtue, patriotism, and religion.” His An American Dictionary of the English Language (1828) gave American Christian constitutional definitions. Webster not only sought to educate Americans in the source of our liberties, in constitutional principles, and in a knowledge of how our form of government works, but he, most importantly, sought to infuse into Americans the power or spirit necessary to support liberty. Both the power and form of free nations is rooted in Christianity. Webster wrote: “Men may devise and adopt new forms of government; they may amend old forms, repair breaches, and punish violators of the constitution; but there is, there can be, no effectual remedy, but obedience to the divine law.” As we obey God’s law and act upon the principles of Christianity, we shall see mankind advance, for, according to Webster, the gospel of the Savior contains “the genuine principles of civil life—the only principles which can perfect the work of civilization.

          • Detfan1

            And here is the Preamble of the Florida Constitution…

            We, the people of the State of Florida, being grateful to Almighty God for our constitutional liberty, in order to secure its benefits, perfect our government, insure domestic tranquility, maintain public order, and guarantee equal civil and political rights to all, do ordain and establish this constitution.Constitution . . . .

          • RealityBites

            Nope, or we would be under religious laws, and we are a secular republic

        • RealityBites

          How long will it take for people like you to realize Christianity is not the only game in town? This nation is made up of all different religions, or even people with NO religion at all.

      • Samuel Hauser

        GOD GIVES YOU FREE WILL TO MAKE UP YOUR OWN MIND SO BE IT MOST DONOT UNDERSTAND THAT I DON’T GET IN THIS KIND OF THING MOST HAVE NO CONCEPTION OF THE WORD OF GOD THEY LISEN TO SOME MAN INSTEAT OF STUDY A LOT OF PASTOR ARE LIAERES YOU NEED TO CHECK IT OUT IN THE WORD CH BY CH VERCE BY VERCE YOU WILL SEE.

        • Thomas Meacham

          Look it up: The average Atheist knows the bible better than the average Christian of any denomination. We also spell better, use proper grammar and don’t write in all caps.
          http://www.pewforum.org/2010/09/28/u-s-religious-knowledge-survey/

        • RealityBites

          Yeah, right. I’ll listen to my church minister over you thanks. She has actually studied the Bible instead of just having read it.

      • Edna Haydon

        Why are Atheist so threatened by Christians?

        Your wrong , the Muslim religion has a strong religious foundation in the Islamic World!

        So does the majority of most places of employment!
        Or any other relegious
        So you don’t like religion, get over it!

        • Charles M Taylor

          We’ll get over it when people stop trying to sneak their religious views into the classroom and the law books. In other words, we’ll get over it when people stop trying to foist it on others against their will. You’re welcome to your faith and you’re welcome to practice it so long as it doesn’t make any impositions on people outside it.

          And let me turn the question around on you? Why are YOU so threatened by atheists? Are you afraid of losing your special privileged status and having to be treated equally under the law? Are you afraid that real science, with real research and real evidence to back it up will cause young adults to clue in on how reality actually works?

          As for me, Christians and other religious types don’t pose me any problems until they get obnoxious and bossy– and I DO push back.

        • RealityBites

          Religion is fine as long as people don’t try and shun those of other faiths. THAT is the agenda of SOME “christians” today is to make this secular, multicultural nation a Christian theocracy. Luckily for the rest of us, its not.

      • Detfan1

        Is the separation of church and state in the Constitution? Nope. Failed argument! Was the U.S. Constitution developed using Christian principles? Yep.

    • Samuel Hauser

      YOU ARE WERY RIGHT BECAUSE THEY KNOW THAT YEHOVAH IS YAHH SAVIOUR.

    • Thomas Meacham

      Hey, rather than waste time on a lawsuit, we decided that if you can’t beat em, join ‘em. This is exactly what happened. You get the freedom of your display and we get ours. I also note that next week a Fastivus pole is getting erected nearby…. Seriously. Honest, WE DID NOT DO THAT. Now look what you started.

      • fjpor

        And it continues, eh Thomas. The argument will never end as long as the “god based country” people refuse to educate themselves by actually reading our Constitution, Thomas Jefferson’s writings and, hell, yes, their own bible, too. Like trying to break through a concrete wall.

    • RealityBites

      Does it bother you that much that Christianity is not the only game in town?

      • car333

        People with a mind set like yours is exactly what I am talking about. If you call Christianity a game you have a big problem. What are you afraid of? I pray some day your eyes will open and see what kind of fool you are making out of yourself. Have a blessed day and a great Christmas.

        • RealityBites

          It is a simple expression. People act like Christianity is the only religion allowed in America without regard to the fact that we a religiously diverse nation.

  • Gary Ross Calvert

    Maybe the just spelled “Sun” wrong. It would be correct to this Bible belt, conservative Christian if it were spelled “Son”.

    • RealityBites

      NO they are talking properly about the largest star in the solar system

      • Gary Ross Calvert

        OK, I have to ask. Did you miss the sarcasm in my post or do you think I don’t know how to spell? Or, are you one of those who believe we should worship the sun?

  • Detfan1

    The Manger scene is not offensive. The Winter solstice display IS offensive in that it insinuates an endorsement from Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison, which IS fiction!

    • Doug

      Jefferson created his own version of the Bible called,” The Life and Morals of Jesus.Christ,” where he deleted all references to miracles including the Resurrection and passages indicating that Jesus was divine. The book is held at the the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, in godless D.C. Perhaps all good Christians should storm the building and burn the offending tome.

      • capnjack43

        Because the title depicts what he wrote about. Grow up and Wise up.

        • Doug

          If you remove all references to His Divinity he becomes a human being and I don’t believe there are any human beings we worship.

          • C King

            ummmmm…coughobamacough.. ;)

          • Doug

            Do you?

          • C King

            Not even close. I lose sleep over the guy

          • Samuel Hauser

            ISAIAH 7:14 REED

          • Thomas Meacham

            Reed?

          • Charles M Taylor

            Maybe he thinks he’s talking to Reed Richards? You know, the comic book character Mr. Fantastic?

      • Detfan1

        Very interesting. I never knew that. All I have seen are actual letters written by Jefferson closing with In Jesus Name, and several other references indicating his Christian faith, such as,”I am a real Christian – that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus Christ.” –The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, p. 385.

        • Thomas Meacham

          The atcual doctrines themselves, not the supernatural rubbish others have embellished them with…
          “Among the sayings and discourses imputed to him [Jesus] by his biographers, I find many passages of fine imagination, correct morality, and of the most lovely benevolence; and others again of so much ignorance, so much absurdity, so much untruth, charlatanism, and imposture, as to pronounce it impossible that such contradictions should have proceeded from the same being.”
          -Thomas Jefferson, letter to William Short, April 13, 1820

        • Thomas Meacham

          And as for your quote, the Monticello website of his quotations does not recognize it among their collections. . Perhaps you left out major parts of the true quote and fabricated others. The true quote is as follows:

          “To the corruptions of Christianity I am indeed, opposed; but not to the genuine precepts of Jesus himself. I am a Christian, in the only sense in which he wished any one to be [that is, the sense in which Jefferson thinks Jesus would have meant it]; sincerely attached to his doctrines, in preference to all others; ascribing to himself every human excellence; and believing he never claimed any other”

          Every *HUMAN* excellence… He saw Jesus as a humanist and believed not a word of the supernatural.

          And he wrote:

          1816 January 9. (Jefferson to Charles Thomson). “I too have made a wee little book, from the same materials, which I call the Philosophy of Jesus. it is a paradigma of his doctrines, made by cutting the texts out of the book, and arranging them on the pages of a blank book, in a certain order of time or subject. a more beautiful or precious morsel of ethics I have never seen. it is a document in proof that I am a real Christian, that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus, very different from the Platonists, who call me infidel, and themselves Christians and preachers of the gospel, while they draw all their characteristic dogmas from what it’s Author never said nor saw. they have compounded from the heathen mysteries a system beyond the comprehension of man, of which the great reformer of the vicious ethics and deism of the Jews, were he to return on earth, would not recognise one feature. if I had time I would add to my little book the Greek, Latin and French texts, in columns side by side, and I wish I could subjoin a translation of Gassendi’s Syntagma of the doctrines of Epicurus, which, notwithstanding the calumnies of the Stoics, and caricatures of Cicero, is the most rational system remaining of the philosophy of the ancients, as frugal of vicious indulgence, and fruitful of virtue as the hyperbolical extravagancies of his rival sects.”

          To further hammer that home:

          “…those who live by mystery & charlatanerie, fearing you would render them useless by simplifying the Christian philosophy, the most sublime & benevolent, but most perverted system that ever shone on man, endeavored to crush your well earnt, & well deserved fame.” – Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Priestley, Washington, March 21, 1801[1]

          Lesttee, he also wrote (also from the Monticello website- good reading by the way):

          1802 January 1. (Jefferson to the Baptist Association of Danbury, Connecticut). “Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.”

          1821 February 27. (Jefferson to Timothy Pickering). “no one sees with greater pleasure than myself the progress of reason in it’s advances towards rational Christianity. when we shall have done away the incomprehensible jargon of the Trinitarian arithmetic, that three are one, and one is three; when we shall have knocked down the artificial scaffolding, reared to mask from view the simple structure of Jesus, when, in short, we shall have unlearned every thing which has been taught since his day, and got back to the pure and simple doctrines he inculcated, we shall then be truly and worthily his disciples: and my opinion is that if nothing had ever been added to what flowed purely from his lips, the whole world would at this day have been Christian. I know that the case you cite, of Dr Drake, has been a common one. the religion-builders have so distorted and deformed the doctrines of Jesus, so muffled them in mysticisms, fancies and falsehoods, have caricatured them into forms so monstrous and inconcievable, as to shock reasonable thinkers, to revolt them against the whole, and drive them rashly to pronounce it’s founder an imposter.”

          1823 April 11. (Jefferson to John Adams). “The truth is that the greatest enemies to the doctrines of Jesus are those calling themselves the expositors of them, who have perverted them for the structure of a system of fancy absolutely incomprehensible, and without any foundation in his genuine words. And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter. But we may hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away all this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this the most venerated reformer of human errors.”

          So he was basically a free-thinking Unitarian, not an atheist but he did not see Jesus as supernatural and he HATED the organized church.

          • Detfan1

            Tom Meachen, why are you being a butthead!! Everyone knows the Monticello website is a humanist propaganda site. Maybe that is why my quote is not on their website!!?? Jefferson was referring to the “Pharisees” for embellishing on the Gospels. There are many documents indicating his attendance in Church, among those when Church was held in the Capitol. Plus his Danberry letter, which I am glad you included in part, specifically allows for the government to not be separated by religion, thus supporting founding Christian principles throughout our government and people. Atheists have forever tried to reverse the meaning, and that is why many people think that the phrase “separation of church and state” is in the Constitution.

          • Samuel Hauser

            THE CHURCH WAS THE GOVERMENT READ THE TRUTH OF THE MATER THE BIBLE WAS TRANLATED BY MAN IN THE 1611 VERSON THE 70 MEN WHO DID IT SAID CHECK IT OUT FOR YOURSELF LOOK AT ONE IF YOU NEED PROOR.

          • Doug

            Detfan I think you got buried today.

          • Detfan1

            Actually it is Duke that is getting buried.

          • Doug

            I have two sons at the game. One on FSU side and one for Duke.

          • Detfan1

            A parents nightmare, eh? Slow start, another good performance. Will be interesting to see if we can slow down Auburn.

          • Thomas Meacham

            “Everyone knows?” So Jefferson’s museum is lying about Jefferson? Clearly you have a better source for your Jefferson Quotes? The University of Virginia Website might be a good place to look. It is, after all the University he founded. Oh, they recommend the Monticello site and the Jefferson Cyclopedia. Your quote does not show up there either.

            Did you actually read the Danbury quote above? OF COURSE NOT. What does this sentence mean? Please explain your interpretation:
            ” I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.”

            Frankly, you’re not worth wasting time on. Just know this: Christians have lost their push into government. It’s all over but the shouting.

            Good Day.

          • Detfan1

            How dare you tell me that I don’t know anything about the Danbury letter, you piece of crap!!!! If you cannot stand my Jefferson quotes then get out of the kitchen, Meacham!! You can’t rewrite history, and I will challenge you the end to proclaim the truth about Jefferson, against all revisionists out of contect tidbits to minizize his Christian beleifs.. You just continue with your purposeful misinformation. You are a fraud, and you are wrong. You are purposefully misinterpreting. Your post is not well taken, because it lacks intelligent thought. Christianity doesn’t have to “push into government” LOL. We are already there. Frankly you, sir, are a waste of humanity. Have a Blessed Day.

          • fjpor

            Checkmate!!

        • Samuel Hauser

          HE BELIVED IN JESUS NO BODY IS PURE EXCEPT JESUS THANK GOD BECAUSE IT WAS GOD WITH US READ ISAIAH 7:14

      • Samuel Hauser

        CHECK OUT JEFFERSON AND HIS SLAVES AND CHILDERN.

        • Doug

          Take a pill and lie down with a dictionary.

      • Ronald Crowe

        DOUBTING THOMAS

        Jefferson so doubted JC’s Supernatural acts
        he hacked up the Bible to produce his own.
        But his rational ideas, so ably strewn,
        didn’t take root and have hardly grown.
        For once he’d subtracted the miracles and
        promotion to celestial throne–there was
        hardly enough magic and mystery left
        to build a religion on..
        ____
        * In his Jefferson Bible Thomas .Jefferson. compiled the moral maxims of Jesus, but left out what he called the “superstitions, fanaticisms, and fabrications that perverted the Gospels.” The resulting Jefferson Bible, though still available and in print, has remained largely unknown to the American religious public.

        • Detfan1

          That doesn’t change the fact that Jefferson was a Jesus believing Christian. You misfits choose the two founding fathers who have enough historical texts to allow for fabricating. thus challenging. Why don’t don’t you tell us about several more of the founding fathers views on Christianity?

    • Thomas Meacham

      I am deeply offended by a Creche in the Capitol Rotunda as it is an abomination to the Constitution.
      Feel free to be offended by our banner. It’s a free country. I’m completely flummoxed that you sow through our subterfuge to get you to believe that our banner was actually endorsed by people 200 years dead and a large copper statue. You are just too smart for us. It does also mean that we are endorsing them.
      Franklin had no use for the church at all and doubted Jesus’ divinity.. Jefferson was a unitarian and did not believe in the divinity of Jesus at all. Washington did go to church but there is only one report in his life of ever taking communion. He routinely left services early. By the way, Lincoln was a Freethinker himself.

      • Detfan1

        Whatever. You are fully wrong in your premise. I am not buying your revisionist history, because unlike most of this nations citizens, I know my history. Pasting those three people that actually have Christian views, not atheists, is an abomination, at best,and, more accurately a complete lie. You should’ve honored your late great Christopher Hitchins instead. I pray you won’t be meeting him when you die. Anyone that is silly enough to think that we were not created, but formed from nothing has issues. Nothing EVER has been able to form from nothing. As for having a manger scene in the Capitol being an abomination, what is the State of Florida’s motto? What is Country’s national motto? What is written in the Jefferson Memorial? Walk into the U.S. Capitol and what do you see? Heck, what is written on each federal reserve note? Where is the statue of Daniel? etc., etc, etc, etc.!!!

        You proactive antagonistic humanists are disrespectful to the strong Judeo Christian basis in forming our government. For you to claim the this country was not founded on Christian principles, and trying to minimize Christianity in this country makes you either deceitful, or idiots, or evil.

        • RealityBites

          Why can’t you just let everyone express their views on public property instead of claiming it solely for yourself? This nation is large enough for all different viewpoints.

          • Detfan1

            Except that the particular sign displays three prominent founding fathers that were Christians, insinuating their endorsement of atheism. That is my only issue. Otherwise all other views certainly can take some space. Even Seinfields holiday.

          • RealityBites

            Why not?

          • Detfan1

            Why not what? Why not put three Christian Founding Fathers Characachers, on an atheist display? It’s obvious to me. Perhaps I am not understanding your question.

    • RealityBites

      The Winter Solstice actually offends you???? Get a THICKER SKIN!!!! SHEESH!

      • Detfan1

        no. it doesn’t. read my other post.

  • Doug

    OK everybody’s happy now so can we all relax.

  • Jonny Toepper

    creepy people scare me!

    • Doug

      Don’t ever leave the house.

  • C King

    Imagine having nothing better to do with your lives.. Losers

    • fjpor

      Which one. LOL!

    • RealityBites

      How does someone else’s viewpoint offend you??? No one bothers me except when they try and force their views on this nation, which the atheists are not trying to do here.

      • Detfan1

        Again, I don’t believe there is an issue with the display. Most people are amused, as am I. But to paste Christian founding fathers on the display is a lie.

  • capnjack43

    Let then put up what ever they want as long, as they don’t defame my Religion. Do that, and I will take whatever appropriate action I choose. I would suggest that they move away from the attack on religion in general and just celebrate their cause. Otherwise I will take that appropriate action.

    • fjpor

      Ok, let me see if I have this right. You can defame any other religion – just don’t anyone defame yours? Did I understand that correctly? Well, well!! Aren’t we tolerant. Since when does YOUR religion have a special place in that government building as opposed to those of people who do not believe in YOUR religion and choose to place a reference to something in which THEY believe?

      • capnjack43

        Show me where I have defamed or said to defame anyone’s religion. How can someone defame a religion in which you don’t believe in anything? Wise up.

    • Samuel Hauser

      JESUS WAS BORN SEPT.29 CONCIVED ON DEC 25 READ THE BOOK OF LUCK WITH UNDERSTANDING.

      • Doug

        Is that supposed to be Luke?

  • Pete Sineaker

    There, was that so hard? Now the atheists have a holiday, too. Maybe they’ll have a solstice tree and get solstice presents and have a jolly old Solstice Claus come down the chimney and have Frosty the SosticeMan. …just no salvation. Oh well…

    • Gracie Love

      lololololol makes perfect sense to me!

    • JANET BROWN
    • JANET BROWN

      Horus – Sun God of Egypt, born on December 25th of the virgin Isis-Meri. Had 12 disciples he traveled about with, performing miracles such as healing the sick and walking on water. After being betrayed by Typhon, Horus was crucified, buried for 3 days, and resurrected

      Attis, of Phyrigia, born of the virgin Nana on December 25th, crucified, placed in a tomb and after 3 days, was resurrected.

      Krishna, of India, born of the virgin Devaki with a star in the east signaling his coming, performed miracles with his disciples, and upon his death was resurrected

      Dionysus of Greece, born of a virgin on December 25th, was a traveling teacher who performed miracles such as turning water into wine

      Mithra, of Persia, born of a virgin on December 25th, he had 12 disciples and performed miracles, and upon his death was buried for 3 days and thus

      • Brandon Johns

        Yes, except christianity ended most of those beliefs, in particularly the beliefs of the Ancient Romans and Greeks. Christianity spread like no other religion in the history of the world. None of those other religions are comparable to christianity. Even Islam believes in the Christian God, as do Hindus and Jews.

      • Ronald Crowe

        AND THE GODS YAWNED

        Christians with their narrow view
        think Jesus’ virgin birth unique,
        but history shows more than a few
        to those who would the record seek.

        Fifteen centuries before Mary’s crisis
        in seeking a room at the inn,
        Horus was born of the Virgin Isis–
        received neat gifts from three wise men.

        And Krisna, one of the gods Hindu,
        born twelve hundred years before,
        was birthed of Devaki, a Virgin too,
        on Pantheon became eighth avatar .

        Adonis of Babylonian birth
        (whom the goddesses would adore)
        was born of Ishtar, virgin queen of earth,
        goddess of heaven, love and war.

        Eight hundred years ere Christ’s advent
        came Indra from a virgin in Tibet.
        And like Jesus when he came to die,
        also ascended into the sky.

        Six hundred years before “the Son,”
        Buddha was born of Maya the pure;
        virgin born also was Quirrnus of Rome,
        Zoroaster of Persia, and Mithra for sure.

        The last virgin drama before JC’s mama,
        according to our miracle lore,
        Attis was born of the virgin Nama
        in Phrygia, two hundred years before.

        So by the time Joe and Mary found shelter
        and amid oxen their tired bodies sat
        virgin births, wise men, and ascensions,
        had become, for the most part, old hat.

      • Detfan1
    • fjpor

      Pete, we feel no need for “salvation” from any supernatural being as do, apparently, you. Yes, we do celebrate the time of year but it has no religious symbolism for us. Is it not better to live today as fully as one can do treating people with respect and dignity and not wait for your “rewards in heaven” which we do not believe exists and therefore, do not look forward to? This life is it – we get one trip and if done properly, that is all we should need. And, by the way, which form of “heaven” do you choose? There are so many put out by so many different religions – who you will see, what you will do, what the punishment is if you, oops, do not go to heaven!

      • Brandon Johns

        Fjpor. if you really believe this short, miserable life is all there is then you are the one who needs help. This universe is just too big, advanced and intelligent for there not to be something intelligent that created it. For there not to be something else after this short life. I refuse to believe that there isn’t something bigger out there waiting for us. I refuse to believe that we only go around once and when we die we just go into the ground for eternity. How sad you are to believe something like that.

      • Detfan1

        Too bad your “feelings” aren’t what is important. What IS important is the Salvation you get when accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior, and repent of your sins. Then you may rejoice. Solstice at any time of year gives you nothing.

        Merry Christmas!!

    • RealityBites

      SO??? They have the same right as everyone else to express their views.

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