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← The enigma of America's secular roots

TheVirginian's Avatar Jump to comment 9 by TheVirginian

The treaty explains Article 11 by stating that the U.S. is not hostile to Muslims ("Musselmen" in the text), and that, "it is declared by the parties that no pretext rising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries." Contrast that with Bush the Younger Fascist calling his war of aggression against Iraq a "crusade," and the Religious Reich-oriented general (can't recall his name) who expressed prejudice against Muslims and told one prisoner that his capture meant that the Christian god was bigger than the Muslim god. I've written an article for a U.S. freethought publication, not yet published, about Barlow's book and his comments on religion. Here's a brief excerpt from the article:

Barlow devoted one chapter to bashing the linkage of religion and government, from ancient Rome to his own day. Barlow apparently believed that the original principles of Christianity as founded by Jesus had been corrupted by power-mad clergy, so he defined the “Church” as “the government of a state, assuming the name of God, to govern by divine authority; or in other words, darkening the consciences of men in order to oppress them. In the United States of America, there is, strictly speaking, no such thing as a Church … [Although many Americans were religious] … In short, religion is there a personal and not a corporate concern.” Barlow saw the “Church,” by which he apparently meant any government-supported religion, not just Christianity, as responsible for much havoc in history. “Were it not for the danger of being misled by the want of information [about other religions], we should readily determine, that under the assumption of christianity it [the Church] has committed greater ravages than under any other of its dreadful denominations. …” “From the time of the conversion of Clovis, through all the Merovingian race, France and Germany groaned under the fury of ecclesiastical monsters, hunting down the Druids, overturning the temples of the Roman Polytheists, and drenching the plains with the blood of Arians. The wars of Charlemagne against the Saxons, the Huns, the Lombards and the Moors, which desolated Europe for forty years, had for their principal object the extending and purifying of the Christian faith.” Barlow went on to estimate the millions slaughtered in the Crusades, religious wars and the conquest of South America.

Tue, 04 Jan 2011 06:13:47 UTC | #573029