When talking with someone about “Freedom of Religion,” it is important to know all of the facts. It is so easy to be lead astray when you are introduced to new things when you have no time to prepare for them. Even our smartest, brightest and best of judges can overlook some of the details.
In this sample debate, I choose to use the “Atheist” and the “Christian” only because the names do give you some idea of their bias, and presumably, their motives. These two groups drastically oppose each other about their views. They provide a sharp contrast on the issues about the First Amendment of our US Constitution.
Atheist: Religion has no place in public schools, court houses or any other public/government property. It is against the law. The US Constitution forbids it.
Christian: Against what law? Where does the Constitution forbid it?
Atheist: Ever hear of “Separation of Church and State?” It is in the First Amendment. It reads, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion…"
Christian: And it continues, "…or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” And by the way, the words “Separation of Church and State” do not appear anywhere in the US Constitution.
Atheist: Thomas Jefferson was the first to use a term from which we derive “Separation of Church and State” in his letter written to the Danbury Baptist Association.
…legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church & State…
Letter to Danbury Baptists Association
Jan. 1. 1802.