by Michael Cooper
Tired of the shouting?
Tired of the violence?
A Rational Trend
Are you fed up with the vitriol and noise of the conservative, religious elite?
You’re not alone.
The number of citizens who reported that they were religiously “unaffiliated” has risen by 6.7% from 2007 to 2014. What a profound declaration!
Now, this may be due to the slackening stigma of rejecting mommy and daddy’s antiquated beliefs – or it may due to an actual trend of Americans simply not seeing the value in religion.
It could be both.
Additionally, with the proliferation of religious violence and deafening hatred (and not just from radical Muslims), Americans are growing less patient with the increasingly aged and exhausted pile of traditions, rules, and prejudices once known as “belief.”
Government is following suit, too.
While you can still find the occasional neanderthal politicians out there (we’re looking at you, North Carolina), many are finding that their religious bases are shrinking, and so are the votes.
So the rules limiting religious expression are growing while individual liberties are flourishing. Areas where personal belief once restricted public behavior (abortion, drug use, sexual intercourse, prayer in schools) are now open to any and all walks of life, so long as those walks of life don’t force others to abide by their set of laws.
So why not take this to its logical end?
The Constitution forbids the Congress from embracing a particular religion. This is the statute commonly referred to as “the Separation of Church and State.”
But there is nothing in that revered document that prohibits the Congress from requiring all religious practices to be strictly private.
And after all, why shouldn’t they be?
Let It Go
This isn’t quantum mechanics here.
It’s simple logic – logical enough for the few level-headed religious folks out there.
If society at-large could advance in its safety and comfort, then why shouldn’t Congress ban public expression of religion?
If acts of prejudice and hatred and violence against women, minorities, the LGBT community, and other religious groups become near-extinct, why shouldn’t Congress enact this ban?
Other countries have done it, and without the beheadings that conservative talk-radio overplays and falsely laments.
And even with a public ban, each and every religious person gets to keep his or her beliefs right where they belong – in their private mind, heart, and home.
Nothing is lost.
But so much is gained.
The noise has to stop.
The violence has to stop.
And so does the outdated public expression of private religion.
What do you think? Should public expression of religion be banned, or not? Post your thoughts in the comments below!
Michael Cooper is a student at the Graduate School of Business. His undergrad double-major was in Business and Sociology. You can read more of his writing here, and follow him on Twitter and Facebook.
Image Credit: Newtown graffiti, Creative Commons