Tag Archives: Seventh-day Adventist

Hey, didn’t JFK settle this religious thing already?


I’ve always thought — or hoped, at least — that John F. Kennedy’s 1960 speech in Houston settled the notion that a candidate’s religion should have no bearing on whether he could serve as president of the United States.

He told some Protestant clergy that the Vatican would not dictate to the Catholic candidate how he should govern, that he would swear to be faithful only to the U.S. Constitution.

Well, silly me. The issue is coming up again. The target this time is Dr. Ben Carson, the famed neurosurgeon whose faith is of the Seventh-day Adventist variety.

Donald Trump raised the issue the other day in typical tactless Trump fashion. Now comes a well-known lefty commentator, David Corn, editor of Mother Jones, to wonder aloud whether Carson’s faith would inform the way he would govern should he “take control of the government.”

This is a ridiculous debate.

First of all, presidents don’t control the government. We have this notion that power is spread among two other governmental branches — the courts and the Congress.

The Constitution says there should be “no religious test” for candidates seeking any public office. That includes the presidency.

Yes, Carson has brought up his own faith. He’s talked about how his faith would guide him. He hasn’t said he would toss the Constitution aside any more than then-Sen. Kennedy said he would more than five decades ago.

Corn is playing to voters’ fears when he says of Carson: “Now, he is running on the basis that he has faith. And I think it’s going to open, you know, a big can here. Because, you know, he does come from a church that believes in end times, prophesies, and he’s said he believes in the church’s teachings.”

A simple declarative question is in order: Dr. Carson, do you vow to uphold the law under the Constitution of the United States?

I believe he’s already pledged to do so.


Faith should be off limits on the campaign trail


I keep coming back to a simple phrase in the U.S. Constitution.

Article VI says there will be “no religious test” for anyone seeking public office.

Isn’t that clear? As in crystal clear?

Why, then, is Donald Trump injecting faith in the Republican Party’s presidential primary campaign by questioning whether one of his opponents, Ben Carson, worships outside the mainstream?

Trump proclaimed the other day he is a Presbyterian. “I’m Presbyterian. Boy, that’s down the middle of the road, folks, in all fairness. I mean, Seventh-day Adventist, I don’t know about. I just don’t know about.”

Carson is a Seventh-day Adventist.

How does this guy get away with saying these things about his political adversaries?

A candidate’s faith is supposed to be off the table. The Constitution — the document that politicians, Democrat and Republican and alike say they revere — lays it out there in stark terms. There must be “no religious test.”

Trump, though, flouts his professed respect for the Constitution while questioning whether another candidate’s faith is mainstream enough to suit the voters both men are courting as they fight for their party’s presidential nomination.

What’s more … the guy is getting away with it!

God help us …