Protection of Constitutional Order in the U S A  Essay
- Length: 8 pages
- Sources: 8
- Subject: Mythology - Religion
- Type: Essay
- Paper: #45375877
Excerpt from Essay :
PROTECTION OF CONSTITUTIONAL ORDER IN THE U.S.A.
In spite of the fact that the constitutional order puts across a series of elements from which the American public (as a whole) benefits, it is also responsible for enabling many individuals to freely express religious fanaticism through criminal acts. It is very surprising that matters in the U.S. were relatively peaceful for the last two centuries, with the recent decades marking a significant change in nation's connection to religion, especially considering that many individuals have come to associate the country with Christianity and with elements favoring the discrimination of other religions. The constitutional order is of no use to the well-being of the public in particular situations, as it can be overridden by some, regardless of the morality in their behavior.
The First Amendment of the Constitution (ratified in 1791) says that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." These clauses were installed with the purpose of limiting the government's power while the masses were allowed to choose which religion they wanted to serve. Even with that, given that Christianity was the dominant religion in the U.S., Christians expressed their desire to maintain their cultural supremacy in the country. Protestant Christians in particular appear to be greatly interested in imposing their power in the country and in spite of the fact that there are many religious sects in the U.S., it is obvious that the dominant religion influences most of the activities within the country's borders.
In spite of the fact that it is obvious that they are acting against the Constitution, a great deal of people recognize the opportunity of encroachment against the constitutional order and hence act accordingly. Communities are apparently less able to differentiate between legal matters and matters that come in contradiction with some of the nation's greatest values. People cross the line exaggeratedly because they know that they can evade the constitutional order through the activities they perform.
It is impossible for the U.S. government to favor a religious sect over another and it would thus be mandatory for religion to have less influence on people and on the way that they behave in society. Fanaticism is however present in the U.S. In large proportions, making it even more difficult for moral people to be able to express themselves freely. Extremist religious individuals go through great efforts with the purpose of injecting their ideology in their victims. Moreover, many of them are actually determined to do anything for their religion to receive the appreciation they think it deserves.
It is particularly surprising that religion can stand as a basis for fanaticism, considering that it is also responsible for some of the greatest moral advancements in the history of the U.S. However, people should not necessarily view this as proof that religion is the reason for which the country has come to be appreciated for the freedom that it puts across.
The general population in the U.S. should understand that moral progress occurs mainly as a result of the fact that people who recognize the difference between right and wrong have gotten actively involved in promoting ethical values. Religion and society as a whole have changed greatly from the times when the Constitution was devised, making it somewhat uncomfortable for people living in the twenty-first century to relate to the belief that the concept of the U.S. is fueled by Christianity.
Religious extremism poses a threat to the nation's general well-being, aiming at destroying large communities or at installing a state of chaos. Religious fanaticism has reached great heights, with some of the country's most influential individuals expressing their blind support for anything that is related to religion. Mike Huckabee, one of the 2008 presidential candidates, put across his determination to serve religious purposes during his speech: "I believe it's a lot easier to change the constitution than it would be to change the word of the living God, and that's what we need to do is to amend the Constitution so it's in God's standards rather than try to change God's standards" (First Read). This stands as proof regarding the fact that some people are virtually unable to abandon their religious convictions, even when the position that they hold involves values concerning total freedom for everyone, regardless of their backgrounds.
The international public has expressed confusion regarding events in which the U.S. was the main target of terrorist attacks. This confusion is most probably generated as a result of the fact that the country is renowned its supportive take on autonomy of any kind, especially when involving religion. One of the main reasons for which the country's government fails to stand against religious fanaticism is related to how many religious communities have become accustomed to expressing an antigovernamental approach concerning their position on religious freedom. This demonstrates that law is of little importance in the U.S. In situations when religious individuals are focused on accomplishing their goals (Treverton, 60).
Although religion appears to be the principal motivation for most movements that encroach the constitutional order, these people are stimulated by a series of factors, ranging from their political orientation and until their nationalist convictions. "In this gruesome contortion, the federal government and its law was not "us" but "them," the enemy whose officials were seen in bizarre cohorts with sinister forces of internationalism" (Treverton, 60).
Religion stands as a rationale to differentiate between groups, given that people have always had the tendency to identify themselves with a certain group whereas others were associated with other groups. Religious extremism is a threat to liberal democracy and to the American states chiefly as a result of its ability to influence people in large numbers. It is difficult to determine the exact effect that religion will have on the world in the future. It is however certain that religions will represent one of the most important elements shaping the upcoming years (Treverton, 32).
With nationalism advancing to the point where it becomes one with religion, nations are slowly but surely heading toward a stage where they act in accordance with religious principles, concentrating on removing non-religious elements (Treverton, 32).
There has always been a constitutional relationship between the church and the state in the U.S. "According to Justice Scalia's dissent, Ten Commandments monuments are constitutional because the Establishment Clause permits the government to favor religion over nonreligion (but not vice versa), and, in the context of governmental religious expression, to favor Judeo-Christian monotheism over all other religions (but not vice versa)" (Colby).
The U.S. Constitution has always favored monotheism and it is very likely to continue doing so (especially when it deals with Christian-related matters). Christians in the U.S. have a lot of chances to win in a trial involving their religion being contradicted by a certain act whereas members of other religions are less likely to achieve success in taking their divergences to court. Individuals are basically more likely to be triumphant in a religion-related hearing if the government in their country prefers their religion in favor of other religions or non-religions (Colby).
The First Amendment Establishment Clause is the principal act influencing religions and everything related to them in the U.S. Even with its importance, the clause does not apply to the states, thus meaning that states are not obstructed in favoring a particular religion as long as they do not against the Free Exercise Clause. Even if the Establishment Clause were to apply to the states, it only prevents individuals from intimidating members belonging particular religions, as it does not prevent the authorities from putting across their support toward a certain religion or non-religion. The Establishment Clause does not necessarily have to be considered a tool meant to promote equality or to protect certain underprivileged religious groups, as it is in point of fact meant to look after the well-being of the majority.
Whereas certain Muslim individuals are certain that they have a moral obligation to attack anyone and anything that they believe is connected with the U.S., people within the country are gradually becoming concentrated on putting across a defensive shield toward non-Christians in particular. This in turn leads to discrimination in regard to some religious groups and against people that have nothing to do with the U.S.' oppressors. It is of little surprise that the Muslims are interested in fighting the U.S., given that it is a symbol of Christianity, one of the religious communities threatening well-being of the Islamic world for centuries.
While they appear to be concerned about the nation's well-being, some of the most influential institutions in the U.S. are primarily responsible for causing a series of catastrophes. Although intelligence agencies in the country have had information regarding some of the main threats that the country has been dealing with, they did not act in order to put an end to these perils. "By 10 September 2001, and for several years before that, the CIA knew bin Laden's location almost every…