The Way Things Used to Be

This one is going around teh Facebook today.

I like the reminder that we were not founded on Christian values as I’ve heard people put forth (e.g., “This country was founded on the Ten Commandments!“), and that our government documents used to reflect our shared secular values.

I’m not so much of a fan of the idea that we should adhere to the original values because they are the original values that were agreed upon around 200 years ago. As a progressive I understand that change is necessary as our interactions with and understanding of the world around us evolves. We should adhere to the secular values implied in the image below because only by keeping the divisive religious dogma of hundreds of different religious ideologies out of our government – the one thing that unites most of us in this country – can we live together in something that approaches harmony.

Text Reads:

Did you know?

The original Constitution of the United States that was ratified in 1789 had only one reference to religion: [Article 6] No religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

The de facto motto of the United States, adopted as part of the Great Seal of the U.S. by an Act of Congress in 1782 was E. Pluribus Unum (Out of Many, One). Congress changed it 174 years later (1956) to “In God We Trust.”

The original ‘Pledge of Allegiance’ was written in 1892 by Baptist Minister Francis Bellamy who DID NOT INCLUDE the words “Under God.” Those were added by Congress 62 years later (1954).

The U.S. didn’t issue Paper Currency until 1861, and ‘In God We Trust’ didn’t appear on it for 96 years (1957).

Just after the Red Scare in the 1950’s, CONGRESS CHANGED the Pledge of Allegiance and our Nation’s Motto over the FEAR of COMMUNISM.

In a time when fear is traded like a commodity, and the word SOCIALISM is being used to create the same fear as the old word COMMUNISM, let’s REMEMBER that our country was NOT founded on fear. NO, OUR NATION was founded out of HOPE for a better world where all people were EQUAL – that we were ONE from MANY.

Let’s not let fear change our nation’s great tradition & direction again.

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11 Responses to “The Way Things Used to Be”

  1. Jeremy Says:

    Stop posting stuff that I feel a need to reblog.


  2. Gabriel Gaster Says:

    Does anyone know where this poster came from? Who printed it? When was it printed?

  3. hb Says:

    And the above card dismisses fear of communism as if it was really innocuos and not really a threat. Tell that to the millions who were sent to Siberia so as not to be in the way of the great Soviet movement. Tell it to the inhabitants of Cuba who saw the country ‘change’ from a brutal dictator Batista to a brutal dictator Castro and become a prison island. And in both those instances religion was outlawed. Lets look at the reality and not the fantasy. You dont have to experience a bad to society to learn from it. Then again, there are those who do have to.

    • biodork Says:

      Your entire post is a straw man, hb. The poster isn’t saying that communism was innocuous. It’s saying that people’s fear of communism led our country to make some very drastic changes that altered the way we view our history and how we treat religion in the US.

      Countries don’t become communist because their people don’t have a religion, or because there is no state-enforced religion. Forcing our most important governmental documents to bear Christian phrases and symbols is NOT what kept us from adopting communist values, nor is it what kept countries that were communist out of the United States.

  4. sleepingbear Says:

    This country was NOT founded on hope, its so easy to forget the truth. Native Americans and indigenous people of this land were murdered, plain genocide by law of conquest ordered thru religion. Religion is nothing more than social order.If you need to believe in a religion, than it’s my opinion that you fear yourself. I rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.

  5. Says:

    Your entire blog post, “The Way Things Used to Be Biodork” was well worth writing a comment on!
    Just wished to mention u really did a great work.

    Thanks a lot ,Hayden

  6. TheOtherThirdWorld Says:

    Thanks for posting this, Biodork. I’m gonna follow you.

  7. TheOtherThirdWorld Says:

    To hb: Communism is an economic system that, during the Red Scare, got word smithed into a fear system that competes with Democracy. However, it does not! Stalin was a totalitarian who demanded an ECONOMIC SYSTEM of Communism. He could have just as easily killed people for a Capitalist system, as does the United States. Saying that Communism is a threat because some people force it is as absurd as saying money is a threat because some people steal it. Simply put, Communism means that the well being of the COMMUNITY is more important than the well-being of any individual. Capitalism, simply put, means that the wealth of any given individual is more important than the overall well-being of the community. Democracy allows people to choose which system they prefer. Most choose a mixture of the two, allowing a porsperous community that allows people to get rich, with certain limitations. Abuse of either Communism or Capitalism can result in caos. The only real enemy to either system is greed.

  8. TheOtherThirdWorld Says:

    By the way, traveling lets you see that many countries have Communist or Socialist parties, and some call them Labor parties. (Switzerland is a “Social Democracy” that provides for eveyone, allows wealth and refuses to participate in any wars or propaganda battles.) The parties compete in elections, just as do Democrat, Independent, Progressive and Republican parties in the United States. The Communist symbol, the sickle and hammer, signifies the union of industry and agriculture, which, if properly done, could possibly eliminate the need for banking – a third party that skims off the top of everything without producing anything. So can you now see why it’s so scary to some? Can you see why they want to eliminate the argument?

    It’s not the name of the system that’s important. It’s how it’s run.

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