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Raul Torres: The State of Religious Liberty

Friday, March 3, 2017 19:43
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religious liberty

raul torresRaul Torres

America’s Founding Fathers were determined to avoid the domination of government over religious groups and to avoid a situation where religious belief could be dictated by the government. Our Founding Fathers made sure the people would enjoy a true separation between church and state. They intended for individuals to be free to worship as each choose to do without government interference. These men wanted to make sure that government could not favor or discriminate against a particular religion or denomination nor could any religion assume a role in government.

For more than 180 years the first book in the classroom was the Bible. It was central to a child’s education, not only for its content, but the way it was used to build skills. Students learned how to read using the Bible and passages were copied to learn penmanship. For more information on our nation’s history you can see the video by David Baron, America’s Godly Heritage 1. The link is

Yet some 60 years ago GOD was expelled out of our public schools by prohibiting voluntary prayers on the grounds that it violated our nation’s constitution. Did we really do this to protect the separation between church and state as that court ruling stated or is there another reason that was behind this outcome? Or could it be that as a result, have we made atheism a religion and impose it upon those of us that continue to believe in the Judaeo-Christian traditions and values?

There is a fundamental difference between separation of church and state and the spiritual heritage of America. Inscribed in the Thomas Jefferson Memorial are these words, “The God that gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberty of a nation be secure when we have removed the conviction that the liberties are a gift of God?”

On all of our currency we find the words, “In God We Trust.” Our elected leaders take the oath of office asking God’s help in keeping our oath and in most of America, we proclaim we are a nation under God when we pledge allegiance to the flag. Yet, we’re not allowed to not even mention God’s name at a public school or in a public arena. Nor are we allowed to sing religious hymns that are nondenominational.

Christmas can be celebrated in schools with pine trees, tinsel and Santa Claus, but we’re are not allowed to mention the name of the person whose birthday is being celebrated by millions around the world. Raising five children and attending many classroom activities I often wonder how the teacher would answer a student if they were to ask, “Why do we call it Christmas?” I know what the correct answer should be.

It seems to me that for the past 50 years there has been an outright, aggressive campaign against Judaeo-Christian religious practices and traditions, yet this is the very thing the Framers of our government set out to guard against by preventing domination of religion by the state. But, don’t take my word for it. Here are some real life examples of events that have recently taken place in America:

  • A then-second-grade student at a public school in New Jersey was told that she could not sing “Awesome God” in an after-school talent show.
  • A pastor of a church in Arizona was ordered to stop holding meetings or Bible studies in his private home.
  • Five Christian men were threatened with arrest for sharing their faith on a public sidewalk in Virginia.
  • A Christian student at a university in Missouri was threatened with having her degree withheld because she refused to write a letter to the state legislature expressing her support for homosexual adoption.
  • A pro-life nurse at a hospital in New York was forced to participate in a late-term abortion, even though her workplace had agreed in writing to honor her religious convictions.

But, that is not all. In addition, over the past few years, we have seen atheists becoming more aggressive and intolerant towards Christians. They are attempting to impose their belief system (yes, their religion) on the culture. Consider these recent activities:

  • The evidence is clear: There is a clear and present danger today against those who wish to continue to practice and promote their Judaeo-Christian religious beliefs and traditions. The Christian religion is under attack in America as never before. The IRS scandal from a few years ago has firmly reminded millions of Americans that their constitutional liberty of the freedom of religion which is guaranteed to us by the First Amendment is under attack in America. (Source:
  • Billboards promoting atheism and attacking Christianity have popped up across the country.
  • The American Humanist Association has launched a special website for children to indoctrinate them in atheism.
  • Atheists have been increasingly using terms like “child abuse” to describe the efforts of Christians who seek to teach their children about creation, heaven, and hell. (Source:

Today, more than ever in our nation’s history is not the time for people of faith to sit back and let all this be somebody else’s problem. Today is not the to be indifferent about politics and about our nation. Today, is the time to stand up and be heard and the time to demand our religious liberty granted to us by the Constitution is now, not tomorrow, but now. Get involved with the political process and chose among ourselves leaders who believe as we do as much as possible and demand that our liberties be protected. If we don’t defend our religious liberties now, there will be nothing to defend in the near future.

Getting back to the topic of education. In a ruling in 1963 (Abington School District v. Schempp) the Supreme Court said it’s perfectly OK for schools to use the Bible as a textbook. The Court said, “The Bible is worthy of study for its literary and historic qualities.” The Supreme Court understood that we’re not talking about religion or about politics. We’re talking about knowledge. The foundations of knowledge of the ancient world—which informs the understanding of the modern world—are biblical in origin. President Teddy Roosevelt, the 26th U.S. President once said: “A thorough knowledge of the Bible is worth more than a college education.”

During these politically correct times, I wonder the serious problem a teacher in America would create for herself if one of her students would ask her to tell them the meaning of the four small words we find on all U.S., “In God We Trust. ” Imagine for a moment the probable fallout if she answered the question correctly. I wonder if the school district officials would fire her if she were to tell the student the truth that our nation’s Founding Fathers and their families had a deep faith in God, in Jesus Christ, and in the Bible. I wonder what the fallout would be if a parent, who did not believe in God, Christ, or the Bible, or anyone that does not share our nation’s Christian values.

The truth is you don’t have to wonder. The results are clearly known from various such incidents all across America. The problem I personally have with all the political correctness is this: Why is it that the faith and values of people who do not believe in Judaeo / Christian values have more rights than people of Judaeo / Christian values? Why are their religious rights more important than ours?

I firmly believe that because that progressive liberalism is the primary reason why many of our students throughout America are no longer being taught the truth about America’s religious history in their American history classes. I hope and pray that our 45th President, Donald Trump, will restore some, if not all, of our religious liberties as they once existed in the United State of America. There was once a time when the God of the Bible was once highly regarded and respected in the public square.

I just thought you should know.

For Texas and Liberty,

Raul Torres

Raul Torres is a small business owner and a former member of the Texas House of Representative, District 33.

The post Raul Torres: The State of Religious Liberty appeared first on Big Jolly Politics.


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