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Daily News Proves Puritans Were Right May 14, 2007

Posted by Daniel Downs in abortion, American history, Constitution, covenant, crime, Declaration of Independence, Democrats, faith, family, freedom, God, humanism, law, liberalism, morality, nature, news, politics, religion, sex, socialism, truth.

News reporters and journalists are doing Americans a great service. Every day they report on murder, armed robbery, war, domestic violence, terrorism in school or around the world, rape, incest, drug addiction, high school teachers having affairs with students, corporate embezzlement, racketeering, devastating diseases caused intentionally by corporate profiteering, money embezzled from non-profits, elderly ripped off, government corruption, political scandals, and on and on. Whether they realized it or not, news reporters every day of their professional lives preach to America that the Puritans were right.

Except for a few Catholics, a few Quakers, and fewer Jews, all colonial Americans were Puritans. Puritans were die-hard Calvinists. Calvinists have been lied about since the 19th century. They have been accused of adhering to religious doctrine called Total Depravity. Although Calvinism does hold to a doctrine by that name, critics have deceived many by claiming Total Depravity is a mean, belittle view of human nature. More precisely, the critics claimed it reduced humans to a bunch of dirty worms incapable of any good whatever, incapable of improvement, incapable of love, and incapable of faith.

What an ugly lie!

A few years ago I went to a local college library and read John Calvin’s theological work called Institutes of the Christian Religion, which he wrote in the 1500s. What Calvin wrote, and Puritans also believed, was that human are sinners. That is, all humans are law breakers; just as they break the ‘laws’ of parents sometimes and laws of society sometimes (who hasn’t broken traffic laws), humans do break the moral laws of God. Humans can not help it. According to Calvin, human nature is mostly powerless to change the problem, and the problem is one of inheritance. An inheritance of sin from parents going back to Adam and Eve has produced a perpetual weakness to bad behavior. The answer to the problem is God.

Notice, Calvin did not say humans are incapable of any good behavior. Neither he nor Puritans claimed humans could not improve. Calvin wrote that sinners were incapable of overcoming their propensity to sin. They were incapable of changing their inherited weakness. Only God was able to make it happen. In theological terminology, humans can not save themselves. Consequently, God alone was the means to hope of a good life in heaven after death.

Puritans believed the whole redemptive process culminated in the death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. They knew by experience that freedom from the tyranny of depravity was the result of their covenantal faith in Jesus, which honored God and God honored.

Puritan society was a society acknowledging human depravity and its solution. To our Puritan ancestors, the appropriate political philosophy by which government, public policy, public institutions, and public laws are formed was one adhering to the solution of depravity’s tyranny and its many manifestations. This philosophy was called the Law of Nature and the Law of Nations. All of America’s colonies, states, and our nation itself were established upon the Law of Nature and the Laws of Nations. We see it in the Declaration of Independence, in the US Constitution, it state constitutions, and in past public laws.

Humanist liberals have had a problem with Puritanism. Their expression of it began to develop in the mid-nineteenth century as manifest in Unitarian writings, novels like Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Scarlet Letter, some of Emerson’s works, and so forth. (Did you know Hawthorne was a Democrat?) The fruition of the humanist revolt against the preventative constraints of human depravity came in the first half the 20th century. John Dewey, a socialist of Russian inspiration, wrote the influential book entitled A Common Faith. His work was reflected in the Unitarian backed Humanist Manifesto. Three prominent doctrines of the ‘Common Faith’ are the irrelevance of religious absolutism and the important of universal religion, the salvation of humanity by the new god–replacing the Creator–evolution science, and the inappropriateness of strict moral laws regulating ‘natural’ behaviors like sex.

Today, the consequences of the rebellion against the sound doctrine of human depravity its systematic application to American politics and culture are reported almost everyday by the news media. It seems reasonable to me that the way to stop the increasing violence and corruption in our nation is to return to proven principles like those regulating human depravity.

In the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson wrote:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

I think another self-evident truth should be added to our nation’s repertoire, and that self-evident truth is that all men and women are morally depraved. Because this is true, the law of the land must regulate human depravity and its reprehensible acts. To effectively regulate news worthy depravity, a number of changes in our laws would be required.

First, American law should reenacted to uphold the Intelligent Designer’s moral laws. The liberal bologna about not legislating morality only serves their self-depraved interests. The framers of the Constitution never had a problem with legislating morality, and neither do liberals. Liberals have no problem with legislating immorality under the abused rubric of civil rights. When it came to gay behavior, Thomas Jefferson proposed legislation to whack the manliness of gay men caught and convicted of sodomy. Others who framed the Constitution still favored executing them. Divorce, abortion, and single parenting were not norms of choice. Liberty did not include sexual freedom because early Americans defined freedom on moral terms.

Second, therefore, strict laws supporting marriage and family should be reenacted. Humanistic laws of abortion and sexual promiscuity of all kinds should be overturned. New laws should be created to accommodate with victims of rape and incest by requiring remedy for possible pregnancy within a short period time and by safe houses with clinics to that end. All laws of gay unions, encouraging gay behavior, and pedophilia should be overturned. Where needed, laws strengthened to enforce constitutionally valid laws protecting their citizenship, their rights under the law, and the right to medical rehabilitation.

Those were the laws of Puritan America before and after era of the Constitution. Many current laws and court rulings do not serve the purpose and intent of the Constitution. Therefore, they must be changed. Overturning laws of the socialist-humanist (liberal) agenda would be beneficial to all Americans. One of the major benefits would be a return to national unity on ideological grounds. Another would be the reduction of victimization. If applied to the political economy, it would also mean a reduction of poverty. Subsequently, reducing poverty would result in less crime. Supporting laws designed to prevent unconscionable behavior and to provide all means possible to identify and rehabilitate and restore law breakers would be of supreme benefit to America as well.

I conclude with this observation, the liberal news media–however unintentional it may be–deserves some credit for continually preaching a utilitarian view of our nation’s Puritan constitutional law, which was based in part on the reality of human moral depravity.

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1. funkspiel - May 15, 2007

Prohibition: Didn’t work then, doesn’t work now.


2. in2thefray - May 17, 2007

Daniel. I can’t accept that today any degree of morality could be successfully legislated. I do agree though that a multi prong attack on the many issues you list is worth the fight. The concept of stripping away the protections for pedophiles for example is a clear positive for society.

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