While I am NOT a "churchgoer" (if that is what they
are called) and likely will NEVER become one ---
I do feel a strong need to note that the phrase of
"separation of church and state" is NOT found
ANYWHERE at all WITHIN 'THE American
CONSTITUTION' (or ANY of its Amendments).
The Phrase of "Separation of Church and
State" is a statement that was taken out
of 'The Federalist Papers' (which, by the
way, are NOT the governing documents
of the United States of America) --- and it
was actually based on a Biblical teaching
of Jesus Christ in His statement about
"rendering" (i.e. "separating") things
unto 'Caesar' (i.e. the government)
that belong to 'Caesar' and things
unto 'God' (i.e. "religion")
that belong unto 'God'.)]
In today's modern world, the phrase of
"Separation of Church and State" has
now become an over-used statement
that's more akin to a worn-out cliché
that's preferred by uninformed people who ...
1) are unaware that 'European History and
Eurocentric Viewpoints" simply do NOT
represent every group on the planet.
[i.e. Everyone on the planet has NOT experienced
being "Persecuted" by 'The Church' of Europe -- but
rather -- some of the rest of us have been (and are yet
still being) "persecuted" by 'the mosque', 'the temple',
etc. systems -- that are found elsewhere on earth and
everything does NOT revolve around the history,
viewpoints and experiences of the Europeans.]
2) by "SINGLING OUT" the so-called "church"
(rather than by simply using a more generic, neutral
and, dare I to even say, a more culturally-inclusive
phrase such as that of "Religion") --- it REVEALS
(especially to anyone who is a not a "christian)
that one is quite solely, specifically, and directly
'TARGETING' the 'Christian' faith for "separation"
-- and THAT is a form of DOUBLE-STANDARD
and HYPOCRITICAL BIGOTRY that rivals that
of the radical "religious right" found worldwide.
3) by "SINGLING OUT" the so-called "church" for
"separation" -- it opens the door for non-christian
religions to add their religious practices into the
American government system by using the simple
"recant" of "we are not part of "the church" and thus,
you cannot target us for "separation" from 'the state'”.
As a result of this convenient '”recant", many American
public schools and government offices have now found
themselves being required to add "religious" symbols
(ex. 'muslim prayer rooms') due to the 'convenient' fact
that they are not associated as being 'church'-related.
This is just one of the many reasons that I feel that
certain Americans really need to understand that ---
their action of singling-out 'a symbol' (the "church")
of a specific religious group ('christianity') for being
THE specific 'Target' of "Separation" (much to the
exclusion of the many other religious groups found
in the nation) ---- 1) comes across to many people
as being BOTH an overbearing attempt to try to
enforce a "freedom" FROM religion AND also as
a type of "persecution" (if I dare say) against that
specific religious faith, practice and teaching AND
2) it also leads to many of the non-'church' religious
groups feeling as if they have a 'loophole' in which
they can force their practices onto the government
(i.e. "we are NOT 'a church', so we CAN do this").
Currently, in parts of Europe, the Muslim faith is THE
specific TARGET of secularization --- and in America,
clearly the Christian faith is THE TARGET of the same.
Sadly, all of this TARGETING (against specific religious
groups and teachings) is being done "in the name of our
secular freedom" (just as in the past, 'secular freedom'
was targeted by some religions "in the name of God and
holiness"); it makes the TARGETED group look and feel
as if they are being "persecuted"; and, it is simply leads
to a hatred and contempt for the targeted religious group
(which can lead to 'reactionary-radicalization' and / or
even a sympathy-led "push" for "privileged treatment").
So how about ... if we all just PLEASE try to STOP using
the overworn, worn-out, clichéd (and dare I to even say
BIGOTED) phrase of "Separation of Church and State"
-- and let's all try to, instead, use a more inclusive
(and less "targeted" or "biased") phrase such as
"separation RELIGION AND GOVERNMENT".
Seriously, I feel we should all work together in order
to learn how to STOP THE religious-TARGETING;
to neutralize the terms; to let people practice as
they belive; to keep RELIGION and GOVERNMENT
(and NOT JUST 'church' and 'state') separate; and
let everyone live and let live -- without ANY group
being hassled and / or specifically singled-out.