“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
During this past Christmas season, as a citizen of these wonderful United States of America, I was flat-out flabbergasted and dismayed by some people in the governmental power structure who were able to prohibit the singing of religious hymns at veterans’ hospitals, and are empowering the forced removal of any religious references within public schools or any other government-based organizations. Unless I have completely lost my ability to read, these actions are directly and flagrantly in violation of the First Amendment.
Because Christmas is a Christian-based holiday, and about 76 percent of Americans profess the Christian faith, by circumstance and commonality, one may think that this is only an issue with Christians. However, from a broader sociological basis, this exercised repression forebodes a far more dangerous threat to our basic freedoms in this country. Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus and Jews, as well as atheists, agnostics and any others who want to maintain “the free exercise thereof” also should feel threatened by these recent government actions.
About 52 years ago, I was sitting in a college sociology class, and the professor commented that, from a social-change standpoint, he would much rather deal with revolution than evolution. Revolution directly confronts you, and you can put your hands around it and deal with it. Evolution is just as real, but is more subtle and happens over time. You just wake up one day and that’s the way it is.
Be watchful. We are being eased off the path that maintains our freedom and onto the path that leads to totalitarianism, in which citizens are totally subject to an absolute state authority.
Therefore, I would like to petition the government for a redress of this current infringement on the rights of all people in this country, and because of the future danger it presents to our religious beliefs, our social values and our freedom.