Alabamians Will Soon Vote on Putting the Ten Commandments on Public Property

Oct 31, 2018

By Andrew Seidel

The god of the Bible is on the Nov. 6 ballot in Alabama. A proposed constitutional amendment would allow the government to display his so-called divine law — the Ten Commandments — on every piece of public property in the state.

Amendment 1 unnecessarily rewrites the religious liberty provisions of the Alabama Constitution in alarming ways. There’s actually some good language in the amendment — for instance, prohibiting taxes from going to churches — but that’s already protected under the law so there’s no need for a change.

This amendment is not meant to protect religious liberty or ensure that the state doesn’t meddle in the administration of churches. It is meant to decorate every piece of government property, especially in public schools, with a biblical law that begins, “I am the Lord your God… You shall have no other gods before me.”

That divine command, while central to Judeo-Christianity, is, to be blunt, un-American. The First Commandment embodies principles that directly conflict with the principles on which the United States was founded. No law can tell an American to worship a god, let alone which god. Americans are free to be godless (and a growing number are), or, if they wish, to worship every god from every holy book.

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9 comments on “Alabamians Will Soon Vote on Putting the Ten Commandments on Public Property

  • to display his so-called divine law — the Ten Commandments — on every piece of public property in the state.

    Ah! But which version of those “set-in-stone”, commandments?

    That one about “no graven images” could really upset Catholics – unless their cognitive dissonance is strengthened!

  • But the key is in the colon. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
    5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them

    That’s the King James Version, though I cut and pasted the text from the Net where it gives a full stop after earth. In my printed version, which I’d be more inclined to trust it is definitely a colon. God knows what the original Hebrew version said!

    Anyhow, with the colon, the meaning is clear, it’s not the making of images which is forbidden, but the worship of images as idols.

    Punctuation is important. Sir Roger Casement was hung by a comma, which did or did not appear in a medieval law of Treason. The original Norman French Act, handwritten on vellum was examined, and the case revolved on whether a spot in the text was a comma or a blob of dirt. It is often alleged that the comma was added after the trial. They hung him anyhow, August 1916. (https://ipdraughts.wordpress.com/2013/10/14/hanged-on-a-comma-drafting-can-be-a-matter-of-life-and-death/ )

  • eejit #2
    Nov 1, 2018 at 8:19 am

    Anyhow, with the colon, the meaning is clear,
    it’s not the making of images which is forbidden, but the worship of images as idols.

    Thank goodness for that!!

    A quick “Our Father” looking up at the crucifix, and 3 “Hail Marys” by the statue plus a bit of crossing, should be harmless enough 🙂

  • If these dimwits actually read the bible they pretend to follow, they would know that the ten commandments that were supposedly engraved on stone by god (twice, after Moses broke the first set) were the so-called ‘ritual decalogue’ of Exodus 34: 14-26, none of which has the slightest relevance to American constitutional law or indeed anything other than primitive jewish religious rituals.

  • Ah, Roger. That just shows the shallowness of your spirituality! Situational ethics are the enemy of true religion, designed by the Devil, to confuse the Faithful about the immutable truth of God’s revelation of Truth and Justice as contained in His Holy Bible. Prayer and reflection will help you – but you won’t be the subject of either from me.

  • I recall watching programs about the Amish who take this images thing to the lengths of not allowing paintings, photographs, ornaments or just about anything which is a representation of something else. The crazy is certainly strong in those people.

  • Arkrid Sandwich #6
    Nov 2, 2018 at 5:46 am

    I recall watching programs about the Amish who take this images thing to the lengths of not allowing paintings,
    photographs, ornaments or just about anything which is a representation of something else.

    In the UK they keep finding old churches where there are religious paintings under layers of plain paint, on walls which were painted over by puritans etc. when there were political shifts in religious leadership.

  • not allowing paintings, photographs, ornaments or just about anything which is a representation of something else

    Standard Calvinism. Also Islam. In the Reformation gangs of officially sanctioned zealots toured England and destroyed anything representing the human being in churches and other sacred places. The superb chapter house in Ely Cathedral had hundreds of heads wantonly knocked off of statues, the glass in Winchester was destroyed, paintings were limed over. It is estimated that about 90% of the artwork in England was destroyed. Similar in other parts of Europe, especially France.

    There was also an outbreak of iconoclasticism in Byzantine times, probably under the influence of Islam, when a great deal of priceless artwork was destroyed. Of course, in modern times Isis and the Taliban were at it.

  • I see that Greece (Having had its near-bankrupt economy baled out by the EU), is starting to make some slight gestures towards moving away from theocracy and towards separating church and state!

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-46122997

    A landmark agreement has been reached in Athens that will end the status of priests and bishops as civil servants and bring Greece a step closer to separation of Church and state.

    Some 10,000 Church employees will come off the payroll, although their wages will still be paid as a state subsidy.

    The Orthodox Church plays a significant role in public life in Greece.

    Some priests and politicians criticised the deal between Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Archbishop Ieronymos.
    What have they agreed?

    The two leaders say the state will continue to pay the clergy’s salaries but no longer as civil servants. Greece has been trying to scale back its public sector after years of international bailouts. In 2015, 18% of the workforce was employed by the government.

    Payment will be made through an annual subsidy of around €200m (£175m; $230m), and that fund will not be affected if the Church increases or reduces the number of priests.

    In return, the Church will not oppose moves to make the state “religion neutral” and would drop any claim to property once taken over by the state.

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