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(Some Guy)   Atheists can't hold public office in seven U.S. states   (nebraskaatheists.org) divider line
    More: PSA  
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22129 clicks; posted to Main » and Politics » on 04 Dec 2003 at 1:05 AM (19 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



687 Comments     (+0 »)


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2003-12-03 11:30:40 PM  
I'm a little rusty on the procedures, so I'm curious: If one were so inclined, how would these be overturned? Do the First Amendment and the fact that the Constitution is the "supreme law of the land" automatically trump these, or would court proceedings be necessary to remove the provisions?

I don't think it's likely that these provisions would be enforced these days, mind you, but Tennessee...Texas...hell, you never know.
 
2003-12-03 11:38:50 PM  
Why am I not shocked that one of them is NC?
 
2003-12-03 11:40:15 PM  
HumbleGod-- Not exactly.

The first amendment only works on the states because of the 14th. The late 19th century changed a great many things.

That being said, this would be an easy day in court; a polysci undergrad could argue the case and cite the precedents in about ten minutes.
 
2003-12-04 1:07:41 AM  
I guess "Seperation of Church and State" doesn't mean that...

Well, it's not like I would have ever wanted to hold office in those states anyways.
 
2003-12-04 1:07:45 AM  
This is an outrage! I demand a recount!
 
2003-12-04 1:08:01 AM  
And Christians claim they're so persecuted. Gimme a break.

...does anyone else smell smoke?
 
2003-12-04 1:08:38 AM  
Douglas Adams surrenders??
 
2003-12-04 1:09:11 AM  
oh come on, like these would ever be enforced. this is like those old laws that prohibit spitting on the street on tuesdays or something.
 
2003-12-04 1:10:08 AM  
People, before this turns into the mother of all flame wars, let me repeat my assertion from another, similar war from the other day. Your not going to change anyones mind on this subject, so why bother arguing about it?
 
2003-12-04 1:10:28 AM  
Anyway.. before you all go off on a crazy rant about one thing or another, keep in mind that these are all century old documents. Some parts may not be applicable or acceptable in our society as we see it, but it doesnt mean that the document will rewrite itself for today's society, and people probably dont even read these documents very often anyway.
 
2003-12-04 1:11:12 AM  
Seems to me that if an atheist tried to run for governor in any of these states, the Christian groups would invoke these clauses in a heartbeat.
 
2003-12-04 1:11:37 AM  
Not that I was going to run for office anyway, but what if we just pretended...y'know, paid lip service to following Jesus' teachings, then, once elected, we just blindly pursued our own agendas of looting, pillaging, and relentless self-promotion?

/feels like Senate material alredy
 
2003-12-04 1:12:03 AM  
Hopefully, these are overturned, as it's simply ridiculous.
 
2003-12-04 1:12:20 AM  
Khaddy: This is an outrage! I demand a recount!


Whoah, man! Heh, heh, heh... I don't get it.

 
2003-12-04 1:12:35 AM  
Here we go again....
 
2003-12-04 1:12:38 AM  
[image from gouranga.com too old to be available]
 
2003-12-04 1:13:48 AM  
These restrictions are unconstitutional, and if someone ever had a case where he can prove he was denied employment or benefits because he's an atheist, it would be a slam-dunk for any competent lawyer.

Of course, I imagine these states just ignore the laws.
 
2003-12-04 1:14:13 AM  
The states would have absolutely no need to invoke the laws. All it would take is to actually have an openly atheist candidate. Said candidate would not have a snowball's chance in hell of being elected in the vast majority of America.

And Christians have the nerve to pretend they are persecuted.
 
2003-12-04 1:15:25 AM  
Yeah, these would get tossed out the moment anyone tries to apply them. It's discrimination based on your beliefs, and while Bush Sr. would certianly be fine with that, I don't think any judge in his right mind would uphold it.
 
2003-12-04 1:16:06 AM  
Wait a minute,

Is the athiest biatching about this the same one that is always saying that america was not founded by Christians or people of Christian faith? Case it would seem to Imply they were.

Hmmmm.

(damn, I am out of marshmellows)
 
2003-12-04 1:16:08 AM  
Any state that would have a law like this must be primarily christian, and therefore when the voting comes, they would not vote for the atheists anyways.

I'm too tired to be coherent, you figure it out.
 
2003-12-04 1:16:09 AM  
Look at the legal dates on these things. I doubt they are applied in modern situations, much like - although it is technically legal - a lantern on the front of your car will not permit you to ignore "One Way" signs in Alabama. Legal artifacts.
 
2003-12-04 1:16:15 AM  
everyone is persecuted to some degree. people just need to accept it and move on. Be secure enough in your beliefs that as long as it doesn't affect the way you live your life, you don't care.
 
2003-12-04 1:16:16 AM  
I for one think that people who don't belive in a god are just a little strange, what with all the irrefutable proof and whatnot.
 
2003-12-04 1:17:51 AM  
seems like some early laws need to be re-written. Of course, many old laws need to be re-written, but whatever. Maybe someone'll get around to it. Maybe not.
 
2003-12-04 1:17:51 AM  
The entire point is moot, as unless an Aetheist group pushes to challenge these constitutions, these will never see the light of day in a court.

Nobody in their right mind would try to use them to keep an Aetheist out of office, as the isn't a snowball's chance in the so-called Hell (should it exist?) that these laws would survive court proceedings.

As an agnostic/borderline aetheist (translation: I don't give a flying f**k about religion), I'm all for the removal of stuff like this from these constitutions. However, I have no problem with 'Under God' in the pledge/money/etc, the Ten Commandments monument, etc. These are more of a matter of historical importance--this nation was founded by people to whom this mattered, so it doesn't bother me.
 
2003-12-04 1:19:29 AM  
Draskuul

If it was so important to the founders why were those things added in the 1950's?
 
2003-12-04 1:21:23 AM  
First of all, that's hardly a neutral site.

Second, there's no reason that any rule like those would be enforced today.

Third, even most Christians (including me) would think that was wrong.
 
2003-12-04 1:22:04 AM  
TurnerBrown

Is the athiest biatching about this the same one that is always saying that america was not founded by Christians or people of Christian faith? Case it would seem to Imply they were.

Atheist and Christian are not the only two options.
 
2003-12-04 1:22:16 AM  
I didn't want to hold office in your crummy state anyways.

Call me when Farkistan starts holding elections.
 
2003-12-04 1:22:34 AM  
If these laws are legal artifacts and no longer in play, why don't we move them to the museum where they belong?
 
2003-12-04 1:23:00 AM  
Just to add to Draskul's comment, "Under God" in the pledge was added in the 1950s to proclaim our Christian heritage, therefore differentiating us from those godless communists. And as an Atheist, that one does bother me. If I recall, "In God We Trust" was added to the money for similar reasons.
 
2003-12-04 1:23:25 AM  
mandrake: If it was so important to the founders why were those things added in the 1950's?

Yes yes, not all of this stuff dates back that far. Again, that doesn't matter to me. Words on a dollar bill aren't law, and a court of law posting ten perfectly good rules of morality don't bother me one bit. I'm up in the air a bit over the pledge, but I have far more problem with the schools in my area (central Texas) forcing students to recite the pledge in English and Spanish, just to deal with the English-illiterate illegals.
 
dmd
2003-12-04 1:23:27 AM  
Well, shiat.. there go my dreams of holding office.. except I live in California! Booya! Now all I have to do is take care of a certain well known actor and.. whoohoo!
 
daz
2003-12-04 1:23:37 AM  
Ok, let's do this...

Let's remove all the actual, real, and truly unconstitutional enforcements of Christianity onto Atheists as exemplified in this link, and in return the Atheists also abide by the Constitution that says we have freedom _OF_ religion, not freedom _FROM_ religion.

Stop trying to remove religion from everything (except things you should have rights to such as this article), and allow government to promote all religions (including Atheism) instead of removing all references to religion whatsoever.

It's the government's job to protect and promot our religious beliefs and traditions, not remove all of them.
 
2003-12-04 1:24:52 AM  
one word: Blasphemous!
 
2003-12-04 1:25:17 AM  
Yakivegas

How does saying "Under God" make anybody a Christian?
 
2003-12-04 1:26:34 AM  
As an atheist who works for a church, this really irks me. Live and let live. I really hope that these laws are like many blue laws. Sure, they're on the books, but who actually knows about them except for law students and law junkies?

rcf1105: I believe that many christians would find this wrong. I also know of many who would think it right. The kind of people who like Anne Coulter...

/love to all those who keep asking "why flame?"
 
2003-12-04 1:26:55 AM  
Word.

(Nicely put.)
 
2003-12-04 1:27:29 AM  
daz
It's the government's job to protect and promot our religious beliefs and traditions

OK, I'll bite. All of 'em? Islam? Rastafarianism? Jedi? Wicca? How does one promote many religious beliefs, when many of them exist on the idea that all the others are evil?

(Disclaimer: I personally worship the Loch Ness Monster and believe he will come forth on 4/27/2008 to save the planet, and I want legal recognition and faith-based funding).
 
2003-12-04 1:28:03 AM  
Also, "In God We Trust'" on US coins dates back to the Civil War.
 
2003-12-04 1:28:15 AM  
HumbleGod

World Court???

Since when did they matter?
 
2003-12-04 1:28:25 AM  
daz

1. Atheism is no more a religion than anarchy is a form of government.

2. To activately promote and protect every single possible religion past, present, and future is not something the government should be devoted to. Such resources should be spent on other things. Like protecting people.
 
2003-12-04 1:28:34 AM  
Anne Coulter is a tool for the extreme-right wing, and I wouldn't want anybody that would prevent somebody from holding office because of an arbitrary reason like religion in office themselves.
 
2003-12-04 1:28:41 AM  
The first amendment only works on the states because of the 14th. The late 19th century changed a great many things.

That being said, this would be an easy day in court; a polysci undergrad could argue the case and cite the precedents in about ten minutes.


this is entirely true - these laws would be invalidated under the accepted interpretation of the 14th. the incorporation doctrine, however, like most constitutional interpretation that is generally accepted today, and throughout US history for that matter, was literally imagined into existence by the justices and has no real basis in the history of the 14th. if anyone was interested.
 
2003-12-04 1:28:57 AM  
Uh daz please keep in mind Atheism is not a Religion. It is a lack of theistic belief.
 
2003-12-04 1:29:19 AM  
What about the Pagans?

/one nation, under Zeus...
 
2003-12-04 1:29:27 AM  
Spoofman:

It doesn't, but the addition of the phrase was intended to make Americans declare an oath proclaiming America to be a Christian state. Despite the Christian's claim that God can mean any deity, that was clearly no the intent of the change.
 
2003-12-04 1:29:27 AM  
The founding fathers were a collection of Deists(the bible is bull, but there is a god who works through reason, like a watchmaker who lets his creation do it's own thing after being set in motion) and assorted Protestant sects. None of them were baptists and none of them were pentecostals. That's largely due to the fact that neither of these denominations existed during the revolution, but it's something to think about the next time a fundie starts making wild claims about the religious beliefs of the founding fathers.
 
2003-12-04 1:30:38 AM  
Sweet!
 
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