This was written in response to a person on a website in Kokomo.
1) I did not use a debate tactic to muddy any waters. A reasonable inference as to people who claim originalism as a jurisprudential philosophy is those people can state, with precision sufficient to guide us, what the Framers of the Constitution intended. A first, and I would think necessary, step is to say who the Framers were. The Convention itself was muddied. Compromises were reached, especially as to slavery, only to get a majority vote on the final package. Delegates themselves, afterward, disagreed about various provisions. That is why, as I pointed out in my last post, Madison said "the debates and incidental decisions of the Convention can have no authoritative character."
2) Your "sky is blue" point is not accurate. As an example, look at the centralized government created by the Constitution. Remember, the Convention was authorized only to make corrections to the Articles of Confederation, not to scrap the Articles and write something new. So the Convention acted outside its charter. Washington, Hamilton, Madison, and others saw the need for a strong central government. They could not foresee the developments in international communications and international trade that would evolve over the next 230 years, but did see a vast continent before them and the need for a means of harnessing resources to make money. As I said in my last post, provisions in the Constitution were left vague for a reason. At least 35 of the delegates were lawyers or had legal training.
3) You wrote "Our Christian heritage must be encouraged by our political leaders!" If one were to travel back in time to 1787, to whom would we look for guidance on religion and the law? Remember, if you look only to the people who wrote, or were eligible to vote on adoption of, the Constitution, you eliminate women, African slaves, and the people who lived here when Europeans first arrived on the continent. Most, if not all, of the African slaves came from cultures that did not adopt Judeo-Christianity. Those whom we came to call Indians had various forms of worship. If one looks to original intent of the Founders, we must include all of those who were involved in the founding of the country. The Framers of the Constitution were the ones who sat down and framed a government—built it in Philadelphia in 1787.
4) In your post of August 5 you asked if there was a certain principle I would like to discuss. At the end of your last post you said "the federal government should make no law regarding (respecting) religion." Actually, the parenthesis is not needed. That is the word used in the First Amendment. So—let’s talk about school vouchers.
5) There should be no government funds expended toward religion. Your view—and I am sure you will correct me if I misinterpret you—is that funds can be advanced by a state. If the Framers’ perceived comfort with government support of religion controls us today, what happens if an Islamic group wants to fund a madrassa through vouchers here in Indiana? For this discussion, presume the group has filled out all the paperwork correctly and filed it on time. Do you think your tax dollars should support that group? I do not believe any of the justices on the Roberts Court—and remember, five were nominated by Reagan, Bush I or Bush II—would agree that a state’s law can discriminate against, or advance the interests of, a specific religion. Please tell me how "original intent" works on this principle.