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November 16, 2023

The Christophobic ‘Wall of Separation’

Mike Johnson sparked media hysterics by talking accurately about American law and history.

Leftists only care about the Constitution when they’re defending what’s not in it.

That’s our takeaway from the latest flap over House Speaker Mike Johnson. We wrote a couple of weeks ago about Johnson and leftist Christophobia — the affliction that renders sufferers incapable of tolerating anyone who espouses patriotism and Biblical faithfulness. This was again on full display after Johnson made comments that left journalists in triggered hysterics.

Appearing on CNBC yesterday, Johnson was asked about praying on the House floor the day he was elected speaker, which his interlocutor said provoked a “question about the separation of church and state” and public perception about the whole episode. (Translation: I don’t like what you did, so explain yourself.)

Johnson’s reply, in which he even accurately quoted our Founders from memory, was a brief and incredible history lesson that every American should hear, so we’ll quote him in full:

Listen, faith, our deep religious heritage and tradition, is a big part of what it means to be an American. When the Founders set this system up, they wanted a vibrant expression of faith in the public square because they believed that a general moral consensus and virtue was necessary to maintain this grand experiment in self-governance that we created — a government of, by, and for the people. We don’t have a king in charge, we don’t have a middle man, so we’ve got to keep morality amongst us, so that we have accountability. And so they wanted faith to be a big part of that.

The separation of church and state is a misnomer. People misunderstand it. Of course, it comes from a phrase that was in a letter that [Thomas] Jefferson wrote [to the Danbury Baptist Association of Connecticut in 1802]. It’s not in the Constitution. And what he was explaining is, they did not want the government to encroach upon the church — not that they didn’t want principles of faith to have influence on our public life. It was exactly the opposite.

[George] Washington said, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, Religion and morality are indispensable supports.” And John Adams came next and he said, “Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

They knew that it would be important to maintain our system, and that’s why I think we need more of that — not an establishment of any national religion, but we need everybody’s vibrant expression of faith because it’s such an important part of who we are as a nation.

If members of Congress understood history and faith half as well as Johnson just articulated, we wouldn’t be facing most of the issues we do as a nation. If children in our public schools learned that instead of divisive critical race theory or family-destroying gender-confusion, our culture wouldn’t be falling apart at the seams.

Unfortunately, there was predictable outrage among ignorant journalists over Johnson’s comments.

Media outlets didn’t, of course, explain that Johnson is right about the “wall of separation.” Though NBC News did concede that “it is technically true that the words ‘separation of church and state’ are not written in the Constitution,” its story went on to insist that unnamed “legal scholars” believe the doctrine is key to the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause.

Our Mark Alexander debunked that myth way back in 2005.

Instead of the truth, other headlines across the board treated separation as if it’s a constitutionally settled doctrine, which, again, it’s not. They decried that Johnson called it “a misnomer.”

For good measure, the UK’s Guardian added a subtitle with what the paper obviously considers a smear: “Christian nationalist House speaker bemoans ‘misunderstanding’ of one of US’s founding principles.”

Correction: Johnson was articulating one of America’s founding principles.

Taxpayer-funded NPR might take the cake, however. In a related hit piece, it headlined about “Speaker Johnson’s close ties to Christian right — both mainstream and fringe.” The story delves immediately into a pastor who a quoted “expert” claims helped “organize Christians for January 6th.”

Indeed, NPR proceeds to warn, Johnson and this “network of religious leaders who have advocated to end or weaken the separation of church and state” are a threat to democracy. “Taken to its extreme — as it was by some adherents on Jan. 6 — it embraces anti-democratic means to achieve their end.”

Your tax dollars at work.

This hyperventilating about Johnson is really quite something to behold. This “mastermind of the January 6 plot” is also a “theocrat” who poses a “threat to democracy.” Why, you’d almost think that authoritarian abortion zealots like Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi are the real Christians.

Time will certainly tell what kind of leader Johnson will be, but it speaks volumes that the Christophobic media is waging a shock and awe campaign to utterly discredit him. When it aids their cause, they’ll espouse and exploit historical ignorance about “separation of church and state” to scare people about a fundamentally decent man.

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