• Mike Diederich Jr.

A 5 year old can Understand the First Amendment

Will a 5 year old being raised in a fundamentalist religious environment learn the basics of the First Amendment? They should. Senator Mike Lee of Utah shows how easily this can be done, describing five basic 1st Amendment rights. Unfortunately, he ignores the most important right. Senator Lee omits any mention of the 1st Amendment right to be free from religion when it comes to civil governance. He neglects telling the 5 year old child that the 1st Amendment requires that Church be kept separate from State. The “Establishment Clause” protects everyone, including the 5 year old, against the public school teacher or state curriculum telling children what religious faith they must subscribe to. It demands that religious doctrine be kept out of the study of secular subjects in school. The Establishment Clause is the most important constitutional right being ignored in portions of Rockland County, Orange County and Brooklyn, and especially being ignored by Bloc-supported political leaders in New York State. Disregard for the Establishment Clause allows for the advancement of religious fundamentalism and radicalism. This can be by any religious group; and no religious faith--Christian, Jew, Muslim or otherwise—is immune from extremist interpretations. Religious fundamentalism or radicalism, if it becomes widespread, will threaten constitutional democracy in a nation like ours. Our nation is founded on the notion of respecting everyone’s religious beliefs, encouraging diversity of rational thought and promoting individual liberty. We must not ignore the Establishment Clause!

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