All right, already. I've been hearing this "Christian Nation" rhetoric since Ronald Reagan, the divorced former liberal union leader who started going to church when his supporters in the radical right clergy reminded him it might play well for them if he wanted their support. And hearing it, and hearing it.
I just want to see some evidence. Factual, original-source, credible, corroborative evidence, supporting the claim that the original intent in founding this republic was to empower the Christian faith in the form of a body politic.
If anyone out there could bring such material forward and share it with this readership, it might go far toward settling this question.
This article is meant to make no claims one way or the other to that effect. Admittedly, I have some real issues with both the Reagan presidency and its neo-mythic status, as well as the phenomenon of Republican Evangelicals indulging in such histrionic and inflammatory politics during that era and since.
Prior to Reagan's time in the White House I was both Republican and Evangelical, by upbringing and by preference. But what I saw and heard during that time caused me to cut loose of both these banners, mostly because of the anger and bitterness propagated by comfortable middle class people who worked themselves into a lather over the idea of tolerance toward other people and peoples I also respected, such as gays, Jews, atheists and liberals. I found myself saying so often, and meaning it, that "some of my best friends are (insert hate label here) ", that I couldn't remember when was the last time someone of my faith had practiced forgiveness, or blessed someone who cursed them, or wanted vengeance to be God's and not the USAF's.
If I gave up too soon, correct me. I have waited thirty years since the public humiliation of a President who taught Sunday School at his local Baptist church, studied the Bible every night with his wife, moderated the only lasting peace treaty for the lands where the Bible had its origins, and forewent retirement to devote himself to peacemaking and housing for the homeless. In all that time I have heard this claim of America's Christian origins over and over, as if it were so indisputable that calling for evidence was some kind of blasphemy.
Let's have it, Christian Right. Put your facts where your politics are, or stop trying to take the whole nation there, First Amendment and all.
I'll be waiting right here.