Should the 10 Commandments be banned from public life?(Part 1, David Barton’s Affidavit in support on 10 Commandments)

 

I read back on Dec 8, 2011 that Tony Perkins, president of Family Research Council, a social conservative advocacy organization, said in 2011 that President Obama has been “hostile” and “disdainful” toward Christianity. Rick Perry actually said President Obama had a war on religion. One of the most basic things that our founding fathers did is base our laws on the ten commandments. At the Supreme Court there is one depiction showing Moses sitting, holding two blank stone tablets. There is one depiction showing Moses standing holding one stone tablet. There are two stone tablets depicted with Roman Numbers I-X carved in the oak doors

David Barton has studied the history of the founding of our country for many years and I wanted to share a portion of adocument he wrote concerning the 10 Commandments:

David Barton – 01/03/2001
(View the footnoted version on Liberty Council’s website)

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

EASTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY

LONDON DIVISION


SARAH DOE and THOMAS DOE, on behalf

of themselves and their minor child, JAN DOE

Plaintiffs,

v Civil Action No. 99-508

HARLAN COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT;

DON MUSSELMAN, in his official capacity

as Superintendent of the Harlan Country

School District,

Defendents.

______________________________________________

AFFIDAVIT OF DAVID BARTON IN SUPPORT OF DEFENDANTS’ OPPOSITION TO PLAINTIFFS’ MOTION FOR CONTEMPT, OR, IN THE ALTERNATIVE, FOR SUPPLEMENTAL PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

STATE OF TEXAS

COUNTY OF PARKER

Upon being duly sworn by the undersigned officer empowered to administer and attest to oaths, the Affiant, David Barton, testifies as follows:

1. I am a recognized authority in American history, particularly concerning the Colonial, Revolutionary, and Federal Eras.

2. I personally own a vast collection of thousands of documents of American history predating 1812, including handwritten works of the signers of the Declaration and the Constitution.

3. As a result of my expertise, I work as a consultant to national history textbook publishers and have been appointed by the State Boards of Education in States such as California and Texas to help write the American history and government standards for students in those States. Additionally, I consult with Governors and State Boards of Education in several other States and have testified in numerous State Legislatures on American history.

4. I am the recipient of several national and international awards, including the George Washington Honor Medal, the Daughters of the American Revolution Medal of Honor, Who’s Who in America (1997, 1999), Who’s Who in the World (1996, 1999), Who’s Who in American Education (1996, 1997), International Who’s Who of Professionals (1996), Two Thousand Notable American Men Hall of Fame (1995), Who’s Who in the South and Southwest (1995, 1999), Who’s Who Among Outstanding Americans (1994), Outstanding Young Men in America (1990), and numerous other awards.

5. I have also written and published numbers of books and articles on American history and its related issues. (Original Intent, 1996;Bulletproof George Washington, 1990; Ethics: An Early American Handbook, 1999; Lives of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence, 1995, and many others).

6. I offer the following opinion regarding whether the Ten Commandments are a historical document in America’s civil and judicial history based upon my expertise and study in the areas of American history and the forces and ideas that formed the basis for our system of laws and government.

INTRODUCTION

7. Opponents to the public display of the Ten Commandments offer several grounds for their objections, including that there is no “˜standard version’ of the Ten Commandments”; that there is not agreement on exactly what constitutes the Ten Commandments“; and that “the Ten Commandments are not a “˜secular’ moral code that everyone can agree on” and therefore are not appropriate to be included in a display of documents that have helped shape America’s history. In fact, these groups warn that if the Decalog [sic] was publicly displayed“it “could create religious friction, leading to feelings of anger and of marginalization“ and that these emotions are precisely the root causes of the Columbine High School tragedy.“

8. The Decalogue addresses what were long considered to be man’s vertical and horizontal duties. Noah Webster, the man personally responsible for Art. I, Sec. 8, ¶ 8, of the U. S. Constitution, explained two centuries ago:

The duties of men are summarily comprised in the Ten Commandments, consisting of two tables; one comprehending the duties which we owe immediately to God-the other, the duties we owe to our fellow men.

9. Modern critics, while conceding “six or five Commandments are moral and ethical rules governing behavior,” also point out that because the remaining “four of the Ten Commandments are specifically religious in nature,” that this fact alone should disqualify their display. They assert that only one of the two “tablets” of the Ten Commandments is appropriate for public display.

10. In an effort to substantiate this position historically, critics often point to the Rhode Island Colony under Roger Williams and its lack of civil laws on the first four commandments to “prove” that American society was traditionally governed without the first “tablet.” However, they fail to mention that the Rhode Island Colony was the only one of the thirteen colonies that did not have civil laws derived from the first four divine laws -the so-called first “tablet.” Significantly, every other early American colony incorporated the entire Decalogue into its own civil code of laws.

11. This affidavit will demonstrate that, historically speaking, neither courts nor civil officers were confused or distracted by the so-called “various versions” of the Decalogue and that each of the Ten Commandments became deeply embedded in both American law and jurisprudence. This affidavit will establish that a contemporary display of the Ten Commandments is the display of a legal and historical document that dramatically impacted American law and culture with a force similar only to that of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.

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