Thursday, February 22, 2007

Myths About Government

Have you heard the myth that the U.S. was founded on Christian principles? Here’s an interesting quote:

The Jefferson Bible, or The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth as it is formally titled, was an attempt by Thomas Jefferson to glean the teachings of Jesus from the Christian Gospels. Jefferson wished to extract the doctrine of Jesus by removing sections of the New Testament containing supernatural aspects as well as perceived misinterpretations he believed had been added by the Four Evangelists. In essence, Thomas Jefferson, along with other founding fathers, did not believe in Jesus's divinity, the Trinity, resurrection, miracles, or any other supernatural aspect described in the bible. (

President Jefferson was a fascinating person. In addition to stripping away much of the Bible, his morality did not prevent him from fathering children with Sally Hemings, a black slave. His paternity is contested but DNA evidence seems to indicate he was the father.

Although Jefferson wrote regarding marriage between blacks and whites, "The amalgamation of whites with blacks produces a degradation to which no lover of his country, no lover of excellence in the human character, can innocently consent," a subject of considerable controversy since Jefferson's time is whether he was the father of any of the children of his slave Sally Hemings. Hemings was likely the half-sister of Jefferson's deceased wife Martha Wayles Skelton Jefferson. (

If Jefferson lived today, I think many right-wing Christians would reject him and condemn him as a heretic and immoral person and, all the while, continue asserting that the country was founded on Christian principles as opposed to humanitarian principles.

What does this have to do with the role of the government? I assert we have an imperfect and aging constitution -- which should not be rejected or abandoned as some might have mistakenly assumed from my last post -- but, more significantly, we have a majority of our population that has probably not read the constitution and believes many untruths, half-truths, mistaken beliefs and down-right lies about our constitution and our history.

As I ponder the role of government, I have to ask

  • What is the role of the government?
  • Why have a federal government?
  • What is written in the constitution?
  • What is the truth – not popular myth – but the truth about our constitutional heritage?


Blogger Buffalo said...

I don't think perfection exists in our world. A consitution, a bible, a law - we open them up to interpretation to provide wiggle room for our own desires and beliefs.

2/22/2007 09:10:00 AM  
Blogger Whitesnake said...

Paul, just a wee note to let you know i do pop by.
However being that I feel somewaht out of my depth with your topics, I chose not to comment.....

It's ok I still love ya!

2/28/2007 04:15:00 PM  
Blogger anonymous julie said...

Re: your opening question, I actually had heard that. Oops.

From what little I know, the federal government has spun out of control from what it originally was. Some of that may be merited, most of it isn't.

3/03/2007 08:12:00 AM  

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