Religious Origin to "Separation of Church and State"

The "wall of separation between church and state" was described by then-president Thomas Jefferson in 1802 in support of *Baptists*!

It's simple. Don't be a dick.

My message to angry atheists is clear. Being insulting or demeaning with believers wins nothing for atheism, is ineffective, and is actually counter-productive. I can't tell you what to do, but I hope you will give these points some consideration.

The most respected and notable atheists avoid insults and scorn. Even Christopher Hitchens used vigorous eloquence; he didn't insult. Nothing could be more maddening than debating Deepak Chopra, but Sam Harris was respectful, and not demeaning. (I think that actually made Sam's case even stronger.)

Do you mock a potential ally?

Painting all religious people as demented fools gets atheism nothing, and costs us something valuable. Here is why atheists should think before they mock.

Churches are wildly successful businesses in the USA, and their business plan is to be nice and friendly and kind. Why do they do that? Partly because good PR is profitable. But also to form alliances, for political reasons. The only religious group that works hard to piss off their potential political allies are the atheists.


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