I went into the White Pages, and looked up somebody with my last name, and sent a letter to a congresscritter using that address and my name. And my email address, if it matters. Because he wasn't my congresscritter, but he was so mind-meltingly stupid that I couldn't help myself.
See, Steve King of Idaho introduced a little bill in the House of Representatives called HR 847, “Recognizing the importance of Christmas and the Christian faith.” That was bad enough (you know, that whole “separation of church and state” thing and all). But then he went on the Alan Colmes radio show, and made the following statement:
Colmes: Should they be taught Christianity, should every child learn Christianity?That prompted me to send him the following email.
King: I think they should learn it. If you’re going to learn American history, you cannot teach it without teaching Christianity.
On the Alan Colmes show, you said that Christianity should be taught in schools, because the only way to teach American history is to teach Christianity. And I'm curious whether you failed both history and social studies in school.So anyway, I gave him time to answer. I sent it on December 14. Today is the twenty-eighth. Are you telling me that in two weeks, he couldn't come up with some kind of answer?
The pilgrims might have been evangelical Christians, but our Founding Fathers were mostly Unitarians and, since this was just after the Enlightenment, many of them weren't Christian at all, simply Deists.
We even signed the Treaty of Tripoli in 1796 where we came out and said (in Article 11) that America is not a Christian nation.
America is a diverse nation of many faiths, and you can't discount any of them.
That's your History lesson. Now let's give you a little Social Studies. (This is actually something that you should already know, by the way. It should be required study for any Congressman.)
We have this little article called "the Constitution." It sets down the rules that the government runs by. And in the First Amendment of that document (which is part of what we call the "Bill of Rights," incidentally), it tells us that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…"
The schools are a state function, and so the government doesn't try to jam religion into the ears of the children. You leave that to the parents.
Here's a little more history, by the way: the phrase "building a wall of separation between church and state" was written by Thomas Jefferson in a letter to the Danbury Baptist Association in 1802.
I would really appreciate it if you could learn little things like this if you're going to claim to represent the people of Idaho.
So my thought is that (1) he called the house where I pretended to live and determined that it was a fake (that's actually got a pretty low possibility, if you think about it), or (2) he checked the voter rolls and noted my absence (you’d think that he’d take into consideration the fact that I could be a new voter), or (3) he just refused to answer.
Me, I favor the third possibility.