Do you think John F. Kennedy summed up the importance of separation of church and state well in this speech?


Joe, you better read the first amedment again.

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion..."

Update 2:

Joe, I never said anything against the free exercies of religion, which is if you watche the speech, you'd have know that Kennedy also addressed the importance of that.

Update 3:

Lancelot, that's the whole point. People were saying his religion was why he shouldn't be president. That's why separation of church and state is important. So a person's religion doesn't stop them from getting elected.

10 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer


    First, about Kennedy, real quick. Just because the government says that you can't stop a man from running for president based on his religion, they DO NOT SAY that you can't use that as a reson to vote against him. Would you vote for a devil worshipper (even if he swore he would not let his religion influence him)? Would you vote for a man who believed that God was a puple elephant that farted-out the world, and was a religion of one? It's your right to consider religion in your decision.

    [The rest is more about what the first answer guy wrote.]

    Number one, I think that people have a right to be protected FROM religion. (you are right, all of the Bill of Rights is about protecting people from bad things, including oppessive religion, and the government, but it is not about protecting the government.)

    Number two, I think that the government should be protected form and isolated from religion. (This has more or less been interprted over the years, not in the actual Bill of Rights

    I don't believe that the founding fathers were worried about protecting religion at all. They had witnessed and fled from a religion that had taken over practically every government on a continent, into some kind of sick, incestuous (ask all the royal hemophiliacs), lethargic, hateful, xenophobic Europe. They called it Popery and they sure as hell didn't want to see the same thing happen here. That is what the clause in question is all about.

    I come from the southern coast of Maine. Back during the 1620's-early 1700's our area was a haven for people fleeing the religious indolence of the colonists in Mass. (Ironic because they themselves had fled religious persecution, so you would think that they would be a little more tolerant to people who did not believe EXACTLY what they believed)

    So if you try to say that the colonists had a tradition of Christianity going back to the very beginning, then I will say that my people have a tradition, going back to the very beginning, of protecting dissenters from over-bearing, bible-thumping, religious wackos.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    "Separation of church and state" as we know it is a falsehood and it does not appear in the Constitution.

    In fact, I have had an ongoing $500 reward for about three years now for anyone who can point to the place in the Consitution where this appears.

    The Consitution says that Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, but that is to protect the people from a national religion being imposed, but does not hinder the free exercise thereof.

    Ah, I see that you've already thrown this at me before I even finished typing. Liberals interpret that to mean a separation of church and state, but it really means a protection of church FROM state.

    How do we know this? Because it appears within the Bill of Rights, and the Bill of Rights was written exclusively for the protection of people, not for the protection of the government from the people, from the church or anything else.

  • 1 decade ago

    Ohhh utube is a WONDERFUL source for serious answers!!

    I agree with Joe C wholeheartedly. Because the colonists came from a place where there was a national religion. You had to go to the Church of England or were persecuted for it.

    I believe the founding fathers were right in giving everyone the "freedom OF religion" to believe as you wish.

  • 1 decade ago

    "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."

    That YouTube presentation is JFK responding to the criticism of his opponents. They had said that because he was a Catholic, he should not be president. Taking a speech out of context is what you seem to be doing.

    JFK was making the comment that just because he was catholic, he was not going to make choices on that faith, but on what he believed was right.

    The 1st amendment of the USA was added because the Church of England used the Government to collect tithes. They felt that the Government should not be doing the work for the Churches, but that the people should make their own choices for which church they attend and give their tithes to.

    Amazing people's lack of History....

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  • lilly4
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    Kennedy stresses the importance of separation of church and state and condemns nations without religious liberty and tolerance. Kennedy de-emphasizes the importance of Catholicism in his candidacy.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I think this is better speech on sepration of church and state.

    Youtube thumbnail


  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago


  • 1 decade ago

    Thats brilliant. especially coming from a Catholic. he was a truly great leader.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    no, but he did provide a good guide line for the first amendment.

  • 1 decade ago
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