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Religious Liberty: Can I Speak of Eradicating Islam and Still Be a Real American?

Posted on July 24 2010 3:00 pm

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My brilliant fellow-blogger, Calvin Freiburger and NRB Editor, David Swindle had the goodness to read my post, It’s Time to Put the Coffee Down and Eradicate Islam in the West and to give it the honor of their analysis in Eradicating Islam Reconsidered and Calvin, is Islam a Religion or a Political Movement?

While Mr. Swindle answered most of the objections raised by Calvin, I would like to join the round table with one point.

I cited Mr. Geert Wilders’:

“Islam is not a religion, it is a political ideology.”

I believe that we might get lost in a discussion about what constitutes a religion.  Since Islam is universally recognized and characterizes itself as a religion, a set of beliefs that relate human beings to a deity, it might be better to cede this point and consider Islam as such so we can face the problem of applying religious freedom to  Islam.

Calvin’s first objection to eradicating a religion is the protection afforded by the Constitution to religious liberty itself:

“First, the Constitution guarantees all Americans the right to “the free exercise” of religion, regardless of how odious any given set of religious ideals may be…it does mean that Islam can never be fully “eradicated” as long as conservatives also uphold their fidelity to the Constitution.”

It is important to note that, while the Bill of Rights does limit the establishment of an official cult, it has found it necessary to delineate religious freedom when practices were deemed harmful to the common good, to core values of our country, or at variance with the rights of other citizens.  The most salient example is the constitutionality of state laws against polygamy.  Polygamy was a core element of the Mormon religion, Joseph Smith having stated that plural marriage was the most important doctrine revealed to him by God.  Yet the US Government arrested the patriarchs of that faith in our territories, and later in the State of Utah, for practicing it.

Utah was initially deprived of statehood until the Mormons renounced the key component of their faith.  Fortunately, a timely revelation to the President of the LDS resulted in the 1890 Manifesto, a document declaring that marriage to multiple wives was no longer divinely mandated.

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