Jack Ewing: A Conservative Who’s Oblivious To Reality

I have no idea who Jack Ewing is, but last week he wrote a cliche filled and ridiculous guest editorial for the Times entitled “Progressives revising history to remove our Christian foundation.” Like I said, it was last week, but the thing is so mind-blowingly stupid that I had to say two things.

First, progressives are the ones re-writing history? Really? In my experience, as a student and now as an educator, using the lectern as a pulpit has been the sole province of conservatives. I would offer many, many, many such examples to counter all the ones Ewing provides, except he doesn’t provide any. Not one. This is all he has to say:

One of the many big lies the progressives have fed us over the years is that the United States is not and never was a nation of primarily Christian citizens. They have simply revised the history of our country to promote their aim to take our Christian foundation out from under us because they recognize, just as our founding fathers did, that it is essential to the success of a constitutional republic such as ours.

That’s it. No attempt to name any individual progressives. No actual policies. No specifics at all. Just some broad, meaningless and ominous language meant to scare the sheeple into action; an accusation with no evidence.

Of course, Ewing probably skipped the examples because the most infamous incident of revisionism completely contradicts his charge. In order to undercut the doctrine of separation of church and state, the Texas State Board of Ed recently cut Thomas Jefferson from high school history classes. In order to minimize the role of slavery in the Civil War, they’ve also elevated Jefferson Davis’s inaugural address to that of Abraham Lincoln. In short, whatever may be the isolated actions of individual educators, it’s only in Texas that the official policy is to revise history in support of an ideology, and that ideology is an extremely ignorant type of conservatism.

Now the second thing I want to say. After Ewing’s evidence-free accusation, he provides a list of historical “facts” that disprove the progressives’ alleged claim that this is not a Christian nation. For example:

Four signers of the Declaration of Independence were current or former full-time preachers. Many were sons of clergy. Some, such as Thomas Jefferson, were at the time considered simply believers in God and not in some Christian doctrine. But the founders were overwhelmingly Protestant Christians.

I’m not going to dispute any of his facts. What I will say is that taking them all as true, that only makes it more remarkable that they wrote a Constitution that makes no mention of God. Furthermore, when it mentions religion, it’s to limit the influence of religion. Clearly, for example, people who wanted to make a Christian nation would not have prohibited religious tests for public office. They  might have been extremely devout in their own lives, but Ewing’s Christian founders created a thoroughly secular government. Yes, they might have practiced civic religion, but the document they wrote is one hundred per cent secular. Read it if you don’t believe me.

Finally, Ewing does say one thing with which I wholeheartedly agree:

This nation has had times of revival in the past, and it is time that we had another. If you want to thwart the well-laid plans of the progressives, go to church.

Exactly. Thanks to the secular Constitution Ewing can go to church and pray as much as he wants for God to smite the progressives. But, thanks to that same Constitution, I don’t have to worry about him using the law to do the same.

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