Sunday, February 15, 2004

I wrote this to my nephew in response to an email he forwarded to me suggesting that the reason for the 9-11-01 terrorist attack is somehow caused by some sort of a lack of faith on the part of Americans. I hope he doesn't believe that crap.

Hi Justin,

Ok, now let me make you think.

First, prayer belongs in the home, and in church. There are many people in this country and they are of many religions and some have no religion at all. Why is it that members of one religious sect think they have to inflict their beliefs on people who think differently? I'd be most happy if we all kept our religious views, or lack of them, to ourselves.

The terrorist attacks (the one on 9/11/01 was only one of many) are caused by these religious differences. Baptists can't stand Jews, who can't stand Catholics, who can't stand Lutherans, who can't stand Muslims, and on and on and on. Just about every war that's ever been fought has been, in some way, over religion.

Catholics, and many Protestant sects used to harass, torture and kill people even if they suspected a lack of faith. A certain amount of ostracism still exists among the many religions of the US. There's a fundamentalist Christian compound not far from here that is trying to run nearby stores out of business because they sell things of which these Christians don't approve.

We in the US are a Constitutional Republic. The Constitution warns against the state's establishment of an official religion--plainly stated in the First Amendment. I know they don't very carefully teach the meaning of the Bill of Rights and the Constitution in schools anymore, but the men who wrote the document had personal recollections of places (just about anywhere in Europe) where being the wrong religion could get you killed in a very unpleasant way.

Religion should be rigorously kept out of places of government, particularly government schools. Children should be kept out of government schools as well, but that's a whole different story.

Best wishes and love, Wayne

Col. Hogan