America has witnessed increased debate on the relationship between the church and the state and whether the church should be separated from the state. American population is predominantly of the Christianity religion. The supporters of integration of the state and the church therefore reflect more on the blending of the American laws and government with the Christianity religion. The debate on the separation of churches dates back in the nineteenth century where Jefferson in 1802 proposed amendments in the law of America to separate the church from the state. The amendments followed concerns due to the influence of the Church of England in to the businesses of the state against the minority Danbury Baptists and thus called for the establishment of a wall between the state and the church (Ontario consultants, 2009)
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In recent times the debate has taken in a new dimension where it proposes the segregation of the church from the state businesses (Hamburger, 2002: p 1). In many ways, the debate about separation of church and state has been observed as a myth which has been instilled in the minds of Americans from the first amendments as proposed by Jefferson. The issue of separation of the church and the state should not be perceived as complete disconnection of the church and the state. However, this should imply governance that upholds the religious liberty as Jefferson implied (Hamburger, 2002, p 6)
I support the views of Jefferson in creating this wall and support the America as a nation to continue upholding the separation of the church and state. My conclusion is drawn from various historical approaches in other countries that portray the negatives of the state interference with the businesses of the church. First, the Church of England has been upheld as the official religion for centuries in England with the queen as the head of the church where any policies by the church must be approved by the House of the Lords. This implies that the state has a big influence to the freedom of the church. On the other hand, state policies are in favor of that particular denomination. Secondly, in Germany the government collects religious taxes from the public and distributes them to certain Protestants and Catholics. In this view, other religious groups are not considered in the government allocations and thus the government discriminates in the line of religious affiliations and thus equality is not observed (Ontario consultants, 2009).
America as a leading democracy in the world should uphold equality and freedom for all people regardless of their religious affiliations. In addition, state policies should not be governed by the views of religious groups. In fact, the legislation involving the freedom of churches as drawn from Jefferson’s proposal of amendment should be strengthened. There is a perception that America is a Christian state as John Quincy Adams of the supreme court of America once declared that “this is a Christian nation” (Anonymous, 2009). The implication of such a statement is that the critical decisions should be determined in line with the doctrine of Christianity. Although the large potion of America’s population is Christians, other religions are significantly represented. If the legislation limiting governments interference with church businesses is abolished the government is likely to take actions or pass policies that are in line with a particular denominational church or religion and against other religions.
In advocating for the separation of the church and the state I am opposing the situation where the connection of the church and the state will result to a formation of a denomination that can be regarded as the state church. Americans come from all religious affiliations thus if the doctrine of democracy is to be observed, then America should uphold the separation of the church and the state.
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