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Goodbye Jesus

Barry Goldwater, James Madison, Thomas Jefferson


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"However, on religious issues there can be little or no compromise.

There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious

beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than

Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme

being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God's name on one's

behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are

growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with

wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following

their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups

on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a

loss of money or votes or both. I'm frankly sick and tired of the

political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if

I want to be a moral person, I must believe in 'A,' 'B,' 'C,' and 'D.'

Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to

claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me? And I am even

more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every

religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my

vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today:

I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their

moral convictions to all Americans in the name of 'conservatism.' "

-- Barry Goldwater

(1909-1998) US Senator (R-Arizona)

Source: Congressional Record, September 16, 1981




"Because finally, 'the equal right of every citizen to the free exercise of his religion according to the dictates of conscience' is held by the same tenure with all his other rights. If we recur to its origin, it is equally the gift of nature; if we weigh its importance, it cannot be less dear to us; if we consider the 'Declaration of those rights which pertain to the good people of Virginia, as the basis and foundation of government,' it is enumerated with equal solemnity, or rather studied emphasis."

-- James Madison

(1751-1836), Father of the Constitution for the USA, 4th US President

Source: A Memorial and Remonstrance, Section 15, 1785




"[My views on Christianity] are the result of a life of inquiry & reflection, and very different from that anti-Christian system imputed to me by those who know nothing of my opinions. 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 he wished any one to be; sincerely attached to his doctrines, in preference to all others; ascribing to himself every human excellence; & believing he never claimed any other."

-- Thomas Jefferson

(1743-1826), US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President

Source: letter to Dr. Benjamin Rush, Apr. 21, 1803


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Goodbye Jesus
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