Two words our bet­ters con­sider naughty

The Washington Times Weekly - - Commentary -

The Amer­i­cans com­bine the no­tions of re­li­gion and lib­erty so in­ti­mately in their minds that it is im­pos­si­ble to make them con­ceive of one with­out the other.

I— Alexis de Toc­queville f you watched NBC’s June 19 cov­er­age of the young North­ern Ire­land golfer Rory McIl­roy’s his­toric win at the U.S. Open in Bethesda, you prob­a­bly also saw a fea­ture whose pur­pose was to cap­ture the pa­tri­o­tism of Amer­ica’s na­tional cham­pi­onship in our nation’s cap­i­tal.

The NBC piece fea­tured a group of school­child­ren recit­ing the Pledge of Al­le­giance, but two words — “un­der God” — were edited out.

Not sur­pris­ingly, the glar­ing omis­sion ig­nited an in­stant back­lash among view­ers, prompt­ing NBC to is­sue an on­air apol­ogy. “The omis­sion,” NBC com­men­ta­tor Dan Hicks as­sured view­ers, “was not done to up­set any­one, and we’d like to apol­o­gize to those of you who were of­fended by it.”

I be­lieve Mr. Hicks and NBC that the omis­sion was not meant to up­set any­one. But I also be­lieve it was not ac­ci­den­tal — af­ter all, “un­der God” were the only two words left out.

In try­ing not to of­fend non­be­liev­ers — the roughly one in 10 Amer­i­cans who tell poll­sters they do not be­lieve in God — NBC of­fended many Amer­i­cans — be­liev­ers and non­be­liev­ers alike — and did a pro­found in­jus­tice to Amer­ica’s his­tory and her­itage.

The NBC Pledge con­tro­versy is just the lat­est in a trend of the Amer­i­can elect seem­ing to go out of their way to erase faith ref­er­ences from the pub­lic dis­course. Pres­i­dent Obama has been the most no­to­ri­ous of­fender.

On at least three oc­ca­sions, the pres­i­dent has re­moved the words “by their Cre­ator” when recit­ing the sec­ond para­graph of the Con­sti­tu­tion to au­di­ences. Im­por­tantly, in at least one of those cases, Mr. Obama was read­ing from his teleprompter, which sug­gests the omis­sion was de­lib­er­ate.

The pres­i­dent has made nu­mer­ous sim­i­lar mis­steps. He has as­serted that “Amer­i­cans do not con­sider [them]selves a Chris­tian nation” and in­cor­rectly de­clared E Pluribus Unum — Latin for “Out of Many, One” — to be Amer­ica’s na­tional motto. (The motto is “In God we trust.” In 2009, Mr. Obama be­came the first pres­i­dent to leave out di­rect men­tion of God in his Thanks­giv­ing procla­ma­tion.

Alone, any of these in­ci­dents would be un­re­mark­able. To­gether they rep­re­sent a dis­turb­ing trend among Amer­i­can lead­ers, many of whom take it for granted that con­tem­po­rary Amer­i­can life is hos­tile to non­be­liev­ers and es­pe­cially nonChris­tians.

That is why Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fi­cials go out of their way to sep­a­rate Is­lam from terrorism.

In­stead, when in 2009 the Depart­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity told law en­force­ment to be on the alert for terrorism, it in­structed of­fi­cers to watch for Chris­tian iden­tity groups.

This was ridicu­lous. While it is clear that most Mus­lims are not ter­ror­ists, it is just as clear that most ter­ror­ists are Mus­lims who say they are in­spired to vi­o­lence by their faith.

The Depart­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity even con­ceded that it has “no spe­cific in­for­ma­tion” about Chris­tian ter­ror­ist plots.

It is true, as Mr. Obama says, “We are a nation of Chris­tians and Mus­lims, Jews and Hin­dus and non­be­liev­ers.” But it also is true that we are a nation founded and formed by the Judeo-Chris­tian un­der­stand­ing of God — an un­der­stand­ing deeply rooted in our found­ing doc­u­ments and sus­tain­ing ideals.

To leave the words “un­der God” out of the Pledge or to omit the words “by their Cre­ator” from the Dec­la­ra­tion of In­de­pen­dence is to whitewash the truth. Amer­ica’s rul­ing class of­ten seems mys­ti­fied or em­bar­rassed by the nation’s re­li­gios­ity.

But with­out our Judeo-Chris­tian be­liefs, we would lose our unique sense of lib­erty and jus­tice, and that’s what at­tracts so many peo­ple from around the world to our shores and our way of life.

Gary Bauer is pres­i­dent of Amer­i­can Val­ues and chair­man of the Cam­paign for Work­ing Fam­i­lies.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.