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December 3, 2008

Atheists Sue Over Ky. Law Tying Homeland Security to God

The American Atheists have sued the commonwealth of Kentucky after learning that a law requires the state's Office of Homeland Security to declare its reliance on God for safety.

The New Jersey-based atheist group filed suit Tuesday in a Kentucky court seeking a ruling that a 2002 law stating that "the safety and security of the Commonwealth cannot be achieved apart from reliance on God" is unconstitutional.

The atheists are particularly concerned about a 2006 law that calls for the divine-reliance wording to be spelled out on a plaque at the entrance of the state's Emergency Operations Center.

"It's part of the law to publicize that God is necessary for homeland security," said David Silverman, spokesman for American Atheists. "That's part of the law and it's patently unconstitutional. It's so offensive, not just from an atheistic point of view but from an
American point of view because these people are trying to bring the
religious debate into homeland security."

The laws were both sponsored by Democratic delegate Tom Riner of Louisville, Ky., who also is a Southern Baptist minister.

"It's a frivolous lawsuit that American Atheists has launched to attempt to censor and suppress the publication of a key law that acknowledges divine providence," said Riner, pastor of Christ is King Baptist Church.

He said the laws did not get much attention when he sponsored them. But he's getting attention now, and the state is being sued, after the Lexington News-Leader wrote a story about them in late November.

Jay Blanton, a spokesman for Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear, said he couldn't comment on the specifics of the lawsuit but added: "There's a law in place and it's our intent to follow the law."

Comments

Clearly this was going to be relegated to a court case when it was introduced. No one should be surprised. What is unfortunate is that government money is going to be spent defending a case that is clearly in violation of the separation of church and state. What a waste, both in time, resources and the reputation of the church. If we have to force people to recognize God through law, then we have mis-represented Christ to the world.

Separation of Church and State is a lie, show me consitutionally where it says it. Oh wait, Jefferson mentioned the separation of church and state as the state needs to keep its nose out of the CHURCH! Ben Franklin said Government without religion is doomed to fail. (least I think he was the one who said that)

On the contrary, what is unfortunate is that the state has to defend something that is indeed constitutional. What is unfortunate is that the history of our country's early years are forgotten, so that we have no idea today what our founders meant by the First Amendment. What is unfortunate today is that new meanings have been attached to church and separation, that we are interpreting our Constitution in ways that were unheard of even 50 years ago.

Couldn't agree with this inclusion more than I do. For too many years, Evangelicals have held themselves above anything political, instead of legally and civilly representing their faith in the public sector. Today we are paying a heavy price for our neglect. Christ was not passive when He felt the need to defend His point of view...look at the Gospels! Not a bad example for us to emulate.

This is nothing new. A legislator from the state of Missouri brought forth a bill that would make Christianity the legal religion of the state about 2-3 years ago. Of course it was laughed to scorn and never even got a minority of votes.
This never hurts the states' reputation; it does make the church, any church denomination, look foolish in the eyes of the non-believer and believer alike.
The only sensible thing to do is warn people ahead of time to stay clear of backward states.
GMMelby, Pastor/Chaplain

If this statement is a "violation of the separation
of Church and State", what is being violated?
The U.S. Constitution? NO, it does Not mention the
word "Church". The First Amendment? NO, that Frist
Amendment demands that: "Congress shall make no
law regarding the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"

The state is allowed to use the word "God" just as
Abraham Lincoln did in his Proclamation for a "day of
thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who
dwelleth in the Heavens. (1863)
In Faith,
John W.

How did this country get so divided and so lacking in morality that we let people like this even speak? Baby boomers are to blame for allowing this gramscian nightmare to occur in which Athiest minorities can churn lives out of suing the Godly nation.

I'm not an attorney or a politician but I suggest that our law makers and readers go back and READ the Constitution! The comment made about "seperation between church and state" were in the FEDERALISTS PAPERS and are not part of our Constitution. I don't think it is too much to ask our Lawmakers to at least read and understand the governing document of our country.As for our readers what can I say.... Just what are we teaching in our schools? And Why aren't we raising our standards?

It has now come time for Christians to no longer sit still and allow the atheists,planned parenthood and non believers to direct the path of America. It is now the duty of every Christian to vote against every law,Judge,political nominees and anything else that is not conducive to Biblical tenets. There is nothing in the Constitution,Bill of Rights or Declaration of Independence to permit the subversveness that is going on by the secular community. All Christians must unite to declare that the US is a Christian country and was founded on Judeo Christian principles.

I am not offended at the KY law affirms our reliance on God. I am, however, offended that my home state (MO), and the state where I am currently priviledged to live (KY) are summarily branded as "backward"

First Amendment - Religion and Expression:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Pub-Ed is teaching the official doctrine and laws of the great god of government, of whom we do daily sacrifice to, on the altar of abortion.

Each state acknowledges God in the preamble to it's Constitution just as does the Declaration of Independence. So, if Kentucky's law citing God as necessary for Homeland defense is unconstitutional then so is its state Constitution. In other words, the 'offense' to a few carries more weight here than a Constitution ratified by a 2/3 majority of the states and so we no longer live in a free society.

Interstingly enough, New Jersey atheists lack standing to bring this suit in Kentucky but the courts will allow it anyway. When are we all going to wake-up to the fact that these lawsuits are merely the means to force totalitarian rule?

"Separation of Church and State is a lie, show me consitutionally where it says it."

Or better yet, show us where in the Constitution it states that church and state should be combined. God is a pagan deity anyway. The name comes from Gaudr (proto-Germanic for "inspired.") God is one of the names for Odin, hell the Lambards called him "Godin." And yes, he is also the architype for Santa Claus. Worship your pagan deity at home and keep him out of my government.

Separation of church and state is very clear. It's in the First Amendment to the US Constitution. In other words, when our Founding Fathers decided to clarify that point, that's what they wrote. If they meant for the US to be based on religious beliefs, then that's what they would have said instead. They were very smart people, and quite capable of writing down exactly what they meant.


The personal beliefs of Ben Franklin and the personal opinion of those who say "god" during a political speech are NOT laws. The LAW says the government will NOT promote religion. If you don't believe me, ask a constitutional lawyer.


Promoting the existence of "Almighty God", including a quote from the Bible, very much IS promoting Riner's personal beliefs in complete opposition to the law of the land (ironically the very law he was elected to uphold).


This illustrates why voters shouldn't elect people like Riner who put their own beliefs before the laws they are charged with maintaining.


To me, this is an act of treason. Believe in god all you want as a matter of personal opinion, but DON'T write him into the law - that is unconstitutional.

"I'm not an attorney or a politician but I suggest that our law makers and readers go back and READ the Constitution! The comment made about "seperation between church and state" were in the FEDERALISTS PAPERS and are not part of our Constitution. I don't think it is too much to ask our Lawmakers to at least read and understand the governing document of our country.As for our readers what can I say.... Just what are we teaching in our schools? And Why aren't we raising our standards?"

Exactly. The Federalist papers provide lawmakers and judges insight for interpreting the Constitution. By the way, I know there is a big movement towards changing the meaning/understanding of the First Amendment, but it should be noted that when the document states that Congress shall make no law regarding the establishment of religion or prohibiting the exercise thereof, it means that the U.S. government does not involve itself in religion: meaning, it makes no endorsement of one religion over another and it is has no business with regards to religion. That is why "Separation of Church and State" is not a lie; rather, it is a simple way of explaining what the Constitution reads.

This law plainly conflicts with the First Amendment as long interpreted by the courts. It will be invalidated--as it should be.

The First Amendment embodies the simple, just idea that each of us should be free to exercise and express his or her religious views without expecting that the government will endorse or promote his or her views and without fearing that the government will endorse or promote the religious views of others.

It should concern all Americans that some would brush aside this fundamental principle of American civics and try to enlist the government to promote their particular religious views.

Church is the people who believe in God(Jesus Christ),so we should not seperated the Church and state.Because the people who make and write the constitution our faunding Father is the Man of God.And until now God still inspire his people in Senate and Congres to make the Law by vote,so we have to follow.This is The Land of GOD and The Land of Democracy.

United States v. Reynolds, 1878 defines what properly belongs to the Church and not the State.

'Modern' Legal precedents regarding the Separation of Church and State, courtesy of the ACLU (who else?)

1. Enacting a "wall of Separation between church and state" (Everson vs Board of education, 1947)
2. Striking down a state's requirement that certain people believe in GOD. (Torcaso vs Watkins, 1961)
3. Banning nondenominational prayer from public schools (Engel vs Vitale, 1962)

Until activist courts got involved there was no 'Separation of Church and State." There are no legal precedents for this ideology prior to the 1947 Everson case. It has been manufactured out of Jefferson's 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptists.

"When religious freedom is lost, others will soon follow." Keep your government OUT of my religion.

Set aside the whole Constitutional question for one minute.
Does any rational person think that asking God to shield us from the terrorists will work? That God actively seeks to protect us? Uhh, no. God helps those who help themselves, not people who invoke His name for vainglorious political reasons. This law is garbage from the start.