First Amendment Why does the USAF keep on shooting itself in the foot?

Discussion in 'Bill of Rights' started by chelloveck, Oct 8, 2014.

  1. chelloveck

    chelloveck Diabolus Causidicus

    Airman denied re-entry to Air Force for refusing to say 'so help me God' | Religion News Service
    VICTORY: MAAF-AHA partnership ends mandatory Air Force religious oath - Military Association of Atheists & Freethinkers | Military Association of Atheists & Freethinkers

    Fortunately....someone in the USAF with a couple of functioning neurones and synapses managed to rescind the policy that compulsorily mandates a "So Help Me God" oath of enlistment for all enlistees. It's disapponting that secular organisations need feel obliged to litigate against the USAF, to force it to actually defend The US Constitution...all of it! Why should non-theists be required to compromise their own beliefs in order to secure their enlistment, and effectively lie upon an oath that ought be freely and truly given??

    The Air Force will now allow airmen to omit ‘so help me God’ from enlistment oaths - The Washington Post
    Motomom34 and tulianr like this.
  2. Minuteman

    Minuteman Chaplain Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I can only assume by this you are referring to the so called "separation of church and state". This is not found in the constitution at all and is in fact an extrapolation based on a letter from Thomas Jefferson to a church that had concerns that the new constitution would allow the government to enforce a state mandated religion on the people. As in England. He reassured them that the constitution would "build a wall of separation" between the state and the church. The 1st amendment to our constitution says nothing about freedom from religion. It is freedom of religion.

    "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,..."

    The Establishment Clause was written by Congressman Fisher Ames in 1789, who derived it from discussions in the First Congress of various drafts that would become the amendments comprising the Bill of Rights. This clause is immediately followed by the Free Exercise Clause, which states:

    "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"
    These two clauses make up what are called the "Religion Clauses" of the First Amendment.[1]
    The Establishment Clause is a limitation placed upon the United States Congress preventing it from passing legislation respecting an establishment of religion. The second prohibition inherent from this specified prohibition is no preference by the U.S. government of one religion over another; an aim desired by the Founding Fathers necessary to accommodate all of the many denominations in the United States. The Establishment Clause prohibits Congress from preferring or elevating one religion over another, but does not prohibit the government's entry into religious domain to make accommodations for religious observances and practices in order to achieve the purposes of the Free Exercise Clause.

    Being you are not of this country maybe this link will help you to understand what our constitution actually says.

    The Constitution for Kids (Kindergarten - 3rd Grade) - The U.S. Constitution Online -

    As for making a vow before God. That has been the established procedure in our legal system and all official functions since the creation of our Republic.
    It is based on the Christian tenet that a vow before God is binding and solemn. Without the "so help me God" a vow is not considered binding with inherent penalties for breaking it. If I swear by myself what kind of an oath is that?
    In our courts we swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. So help me God. When we marry we marry in the sight of God and, this is something most people don't understand or realize, we make our vows not to our spouse but to God. That the vows are sacred and the breaking of them a grave offense.

    Numbers 30:2
    When a man makes a vow to the God or takes an oath to obligate himself by a pledge, he must not break his word but must do everything he said.

    Deuteronomy 23:21
    If you make a vow to God, do not be slow to pay it, for God will certainly demand it of you and you will be guilty of sin.

    Judges 11:35
    When he saw her, he tore his clothes and cried, "Oh no, my daughter! You have brought me down and I am devastated. I have made a vow to God that I cannot break."

    Matthew 5:33
    "Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not break your oath, but fulfill to the Lord the vows you have made.'

    So if you do not make your oath to God, or to a higher power, then who is to hold you responsible for breaking that oath? It is just meaningless words and should be abolished all together. This is the ancient dogma of the humanists (since the garden of Eden, you are God and only need answer to yourself). There is no higher power than ones self. No higher morality, no higher authority. We are our own Gods. So if I swear to do something and then don't do it I only have myself to answer to. It is my morality, my reality, my truth. My, my, my.

    This is just another example of how low our nation has sank.
  3. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    As an Atheist, I must admit I favor a nation strengthened by God when considering the dangers imposed by the machinations of government. It is only with the acknowledgement of a higher power that we may justify the sovereignty of the people and keep it intact. All our rights are derived from "the Creator", a generic but meaningful term meant to describe a power which resides outside the reach of mankind. If we destroy all religion, we ultimately will negate our core philosophies regarding freedom. Therefore, I rest easy knowing the faithful will continue to believe, and I will be right there beside them, willing to shed my blood if necessary to maintain the true separation between church and state. As long as freedom of religion continues to be primarily a personal right and not a corporate sponsored affair, it will be my duty to stand by the side of any sovereign citizen in the fight to maintain our republic.

    (even if it may already be lost to democracy and nihilism)
  4. Minuteman

    Minuteman Chaplain Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Very good post Brokor. Swearing an oath does not guarantee adherence. But to swear to nothing, to swear only by my own words is not and oath it is a promise. I as a man of faith would resist any attempt to force or coerce a person into recognizing, following or honoring a deity they did not believe in. I would stand and fight beside them to defend our right to worship, or not, as we see fit. But the saying of a traditional vow is not an imposition of, a forced acceptance of, or in any way an establishment of religion. When these types of frivolous protests come up it only serves to diminish the argument of the atheist, humanist movement.

    In my opinion the vow should remain and any who are adverse to saying "so help me God" can replace it with "so help me me" or "on my mothers grave", or whatever thing they wish to swear to. But it is petty and childishly petulant to protest a tradition as old as the country you are vowing to defend.
  5. JLRhiner

    JLRhiner Stranger in the Modern World

    What happened to "I affirm" You could either swear or affirm your Oath. Don't they do that anymore?
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