The First Amendment of the United States Constitution is pretty clear.
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.
Even though it roughly translates, when it comes to “religion”, that the government can’t create a church, i.e. the Church of the United States. It doesn’t say anything about ignoring religious tenets like the evil “In God We Trust” or the antiquated restrictions found in the “Ten Commandments”. But anytime there’s a conscience issue regarding religious beliefs (Muslims excluded), the left is the first to pounce and remind us there’s to be “separation of church and state” even though that phrase appears nowhere in our founding documents.
So, where did it come from? You guessed it; an old white guy.
Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure if we have lost the only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with His wrath?
— Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia, 1794
The whole “separation of church and state” issue was explained later in the belief that only something greater than ourselves provides that moral boundary that could keep our country from descending into chaos.
Back in the late 1700’s, narcissism clearly wasn’t at the epidemic levels we endure today.
Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God; that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship; that the legislative powers of government reach actions only and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should “make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” thus building a wall of separation between Church and State.
— Thomas Jefferson, reply to Danbury Baptist Association, 1802
To be clear, Jefferson’s intent was that the government can’t create a religion nor can it dictate how religion is conducted.
Tell that to California.
The California State Assembly voted 9-2 to send to the state senate a resolution calling on “religious leaders to counsel on LGBTQ matters from a place of love, compassion, and knowledge of the psychological and other harms of conversion therapy.”
— The New American, 7/2/19
While the left relishes any opportunity to recite “separation of church and state” when our sense of morality imposes on their anything-goes stipulations, they happily use government to forces the church into a capitulation-or-else stature.
And again, stealing from sentiments evoked by the term “civil rights”….
ACR 99, Civil rights: lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender people.
This measure would call upon all Californians to embrace the individual and social benefits of family and community acceptance, upon religious leaders with conviction to counsel on LGBT LGBTQ matters from a place of love, compassion, and knowledge of the psychological and other harms of conversion therapy, and on upon the people of California and the institutions of California with great moral influence to model equitable treatment of all people of the state.
WHEREAS, The California State Legislature has found that being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) (LGBTQ) is not a disease, disorder, illness, deficiency, or shortcoming; and
WHEREAS, Major professional associations of mental and physical health recognize that being LGBT LGBTQ is part of natural variations that occur in sexual orientation and gender identity, and recommend responsive services that foster self-acceptance and skills to cope with social stigma and discrimination; and
WHEREAS, Practices or therapies that attempt to create a change in a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity are often referred to as conversion therapy; and
WHEREAS, Some family, caregivers, and communities promote conversion therapy when a person is known or thought to be LGBT; LGBTQ; and
WHEREAS, California law recognizes that performing conversion therapy on young persons is ineffective, unethical, and harmful; and
WHEREAS, Conversion therapy has been rejected as ineffective, unethical, and harmful by leading medical, mental health, and child welfare organizations in the United States; and
WHEREAS, The stigma associated with being LGBT LGBTQ often created by groups in society, including therapists and religious groups, has caused disproportionately high rates of suicide, attempted suicide, depression, rejection, and isolation amongst LGBT LGBTQ and questioning individuals; and
WHEREAS, The State of California has a compelling interest in protecting the physical and psychological well-being of minors, including LGBT LGBTQ youth, and in protecting its minors against exposure to serious harms caused by family rejection and attempts to change sexual orientation or gender identity; and
WHEREAS, In a pluralistic society, people differing along spectrums of political and religious perspectives share a common responsibility of protecting the health and well-being of all children and vulnerable communities; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, That the Legislature calls upon all Californians to embrace the individual and social benefits of family and community acceptance; and be it further
Resolved, That the Legislature calls upon religious leaders with conviction to counsel on LGBT LGBTQ matters from a place of love, compassion, and knowledge of the psychological and other harms of conversion therapy; and be it further
Resolved, That in addressing the stigma often associated with persons who identify as LGBT, LGBTQ, we call on the people of California–especially its counselors, pastors, religious workers, educators, and legislators–and the institutions of California with great moral influence–especially its churches, universities, colleges, and other schools, counseling centers, activist groups, and religious centers–to model equitable treatment of all people of the state; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.
— ACR-99 Resolution
Resolutions are usually non-binding, feel good declarations.
You know what almost always comes next….