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Not Using God In Quote, Is It An Affront To History?

06/06/2009
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shape-writing_fabien_udr_01Once in a while, as I search for interesting subjects to post on Dare To Dream it happens, out of the blue in an email comes an item that just has to be passed on for discussion.

So it is today and it fits very well with our previous post on Founding Fathers, Founding Faith.”

The following is an email that seems to be making the rounds that says it’s “An affront to history” when not using the word “God” if it has been quoted in a historical reference such as a Presidents speech, etc.

The email I received was in response to that assertion and I have included it for discussion.

I am personally offended by the calling of “passing it on” and if you don’t, “May God forgive you.”

Here’s the first part:

SHALL WE HIRE A MONUMENT ENGRAVER TO GO TO ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY AND ADD THE MISSING WORDS ?

A MESSAGE FROM AN APPALLED OBSERVER:

Today I went to visit the new World War II Memorial in Washington , DC . I got an unexpected history lesson. Because I’m a baby boomer, I was one of the youngest in the crowd.. Most were the age of my parents, Veterans of ‘the greatest war,’ with their families. It was a beautiful day, and people were smiling and happy to be there Hundreds of us milled around the memorial, reading the inspiring words of Eisenhower and Truman that are engraved there.

On the Pacific side of the memorial, a group of us gathered to read the words President Roosevelt used to announce the attack on Pearl Harbor:

Yesterday, December 7, 1941– a date which will live in infamy–the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked.

One elderly woman read the words aloud:

‘With confidence in our armed forces, with the abounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph.’

But as she read, she was suddenly turned angry. ‘Wait a minute,’ she said, ‘they left out the end of the quote.

They left out the most important part. Roosevelt ended the message with ‘so help us God.’

Her husband said, ‘You are probably right. We’re not supposed to say things like that now .’

‘I know I’m right,’ she insisted.. ‘I remember the speech…’ The two looked dismayed, shook their heads sadly and walked away.

Listening to their conversation, I thought to myself, Well, it has been over 50 years she’s probably forgotten.’

But she had not forgotten. She was right.

I went home and pulled out the book my book club is reading — ‘Flags of Our Fathers’ by James Bradley. It’s all about the battle at Iwo Jima .

I haven’t gotten too far in the book. It’s tough to read because it’s a graphic description of the WWII battles in the Pacific.

But right there it was on page 58. Roosevelt ‘s speech to the nation ends in ‘so help us God..’

The people who edited out that part of the speech when they engraved it on the memorial could have fooled me. I was born after the war.! But they couldn’t fool the people who were there. Roosevelt ‘s words are engraved on their hearts.

Now I ask: ‘WHO GAVE THEM THE RIGHT TO CHANGE THE WORDS OF HISTORY?????????’

Send this around to your friends.

People need to know before everyone forgets.

People today are trying to change the history of America by leaving God out of it, but the truth is, God has been a part of this nation, since the beginning.. He still wants to be…and He always will be!

If you agree, pass this on and God Bless YOU!

If not, May God Forgive You!

Now the open reply:

Hello People!

(I am stepping out of the “Silent Majority” and responding to an email I received that was written by someone I do not know, as many of us do…This is my response to receiving the email below which you want to read first-it appears below my response just as it was sent, in large print)

The United States of America was founded by immigrants escaping religiouspersecution in their own country. We have battled and battled hard in the U.S.A. to preserve the religious freedom of each and every one of our American citizens, this is what needs never to be forgotten. The religious zealot, the atheist- NEITHER can “rewrite our country’s history”.

The U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment provides American citizens particular rights and freedoms that are fundamental to any free society. It was written to prevent in new U.S. colonies the kind of religious persecution King George III used in England. These activities included the suppression of non-state religions, the suppression of speech in any form, the obstruction of the assembly of individuals, and the lack of representation of its citizens in the legislature. The First Amendment addresses these concerns by stating:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press;or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

If someone says: “God wants to be a part of this nation”, that is a statement of someone’s belief. It is not a statement of fact. If someone says this in the United States of America, his right to say this is protected by the First Amendment.

Today, The United States of America is a huge population of diverse people of many religious beliefs largely made up of the descendants of immigrants from other countries, many of whom came here to escape religious persecution.

By establishing a government that separated church and state, all of these diverse worshippers, for ex.: Mormons, Muslims, Methodists, Quakers, Protestant Christians, Bahai, Janes, Hindus, Buddhists, Unitarians,Scientologists, etc., etc., etc., plus the non-worshippers can be free to believe whatever it is they believe in.

However, they cannot unite and try to infringe on the rights of others granted by the Constitution of the United States of America. They cannot force their beliefs upon others, as the Taliban (extremist Muslims) are trying to do in Pakistan & Afghanistan.

From the beginning of time wars have been waged by each army stating we have “God on our side”!

Is it not time to realize that each one of us can worship our creator in peace?

Fellow “Baby Boomer”- you say you are having a hard time reading your book club book because of the “graphic descriptions” of our troops at war in the Pacific?

My father survived FOUR MONTHS of bombings all night and shelling all day, while having malaria and starving. My now 87 year old Dad (World War II Marine Sergeant First Marine Division Guadalcanal) knows the waste of war since most of his division did NOT survive– (Thus your hard-to-stomach reading material).

My Dad voted in the last presidential election for Obama because he wanted “our boys to not be sitting ducks” for extremist suicide bombers who feel martyrdom is their religious practice. He does not particularly care what is engraved on the headstones he just wants less dead troops needing headstones engraved.

Perhaps it is best not to equate one’s patriotism with one’s religious beliefs. Our country’s history speaks for itself and cannot be re-written now by a segment of our population who thinks their beliefs are correct any divergent belief is wrong. This country is too great for that-it cannot be brought down by extremists or zealots, only damaged by them.

I feel that more than ever the United States needs to be UNITED by the right to worship peacefully as guaranteed by our first amendment rights, not divided by religious intolerance.

Thanks for reading what is, after all, my opinions and my exercising my first amendment rights!

May peace be with you,

Lynn Anderson

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Lynn Anderson permalink
    06/06/2009 9:51 pm

    Hi!
    You can put my name on what I wrote.
    I mean what I say.

    Last evening’s Bill Moyer’s show on Western Reserve PBS at 10pm
    was pretty disconcerting to say the least. It detailed how many more
    contractors have been hired with our tax dollars to fight the war in
    Afghanistan.

  2. 06/17/2009 9:29 am

    I, for one, would like an amendment to the amendment…if that’s what it was…stripping the words, “under God” from the pledge of allegiance to the Stripes and Stars. This country did all right before those words were added during the 1950s and will continue to do so if we remain united.
    It’s plain to me that God is, and always has been, on the side of any people, nation or country that can come up with the largest and strongest army and armed with the latest and most modern of weapontry at its command. And, God, I’ve observed from what history I’ve absorbed, is not averse to switching allegiance from one side to another, depending on just such circumstances.

  3. 10/04/2009 8:39 am

    I just now reread this page, as well as my first response. I’d like to add: You are absolutely right: the words, ‘so help me God’ should not have been removed from President Roosevelt’s speech, but, on the other hand, the words “under God” should not have been added to the pledge of allegiance.

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