This Fourth of July we should keep in mind the words and wisdom of George Washington. On August 18, 1790 George Washington wrote a letter to the Hebrew Congregation in Newport, Rhode Island. The letter shows Washington’s belief that all religious people and all religions are welcomed and protected in the American Republic.
A key part of the letter that is often quoted is:
“For happily the Government of the United States gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance, requires only that they who live under its protection should demean themselves as good citizens, in giving it on all occasions their effectual support.”
Most often the emphasis is put on the first part of George Washington’s above statement, that the Government of the United States does not sanction bigotry and does not persecute people for their religious beliefs. The second part of this important statement, that people living in the United States of America should be good citizens by giving the Government of the United States “on all occasions their effectual support” is usually not emphasized at all.
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What does the second part of Washington’s statement mean?
Personally I believe it means all people who are American citizens and who enjoy the benefits of religious freedom, freedom of conscience and freedom of speech owe their loyalty to the nation that is making those freedoms realities. Washington wrote this letter while the first ten amendments to the US Constitution, which became the Bill of Rights, was being debated. In the case of America, loyalty is to the US Constitution, which includes the Bill of Rights, and not to any person or party.
Are the Jews who enjoy religious freedom under the US Constitution and Bill of Rights showing “effectual support” for America if they promote the interests of the Jewish state of Israel over the interests of America? Likewise, can Christians who promote the interests of Israel over the interests of America be meeting George Washington’s requirement of “on all occasions” giving “their effectual support” to America?
Based on the Israel over all teachings and teachings of Jewish superiority in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, the answer is no. It’s impossible to give America your “effectual support” while believing God promised the Jews that Israel “will be set on high above all the nations of the Earth” (Deuteronomy 28:1) and that any nation that will not serve Israel “shall perish” and “be utterly wasted” (Isaiah 60:12).
A powerful example of putting Israel’s interests above the interests of America, and the harm that causes to America, to Americans and to the world, is found in the Iraq War. The only reason US political whores from both parties started the Iraq War was for the security interests of Israel and for the advancement of their own political careers via the overly powerful and dangerous Israel lobby. Now they have their sights set on starting a new war for the same reasons against Iran.
George Washington warned us against showing favoritism to any nation. In his Farewell Address he said:
“Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence (I conjure you to believe me, fellow-citizens) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake, since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government. But that jealousy to be useful must be impartial; else it becomes the instrument of the very influence to be avoided, instead of a defense against it.
Excessive partiality for one foreign nation and excessive dislike of another cause those whom they actuate to see danger only on one side, and serve to veil and even second the arts of influence on the other. Real patriots who may resist the intrigues of the favorite are liable to become suspected and odious, while its tools and dupes usurp the applause and confidence of the people, to surrender their interests.”
We should keep Washington’s warning and words in mind when we hear US politicians speaking of America and Israel having “no light between us” and “walking in lock-step” which Barack Obama said. We should keep Washington’s warning and words in mind when Donald Trump, who pretends to put America’s interests first while in reality is putting Israel’s interests before those of America, moves the US embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to illegally occupied Jerusalem, and when he reneges on the nuclear agreement with Iran which moves us closer to a war against Iran for Israel’s benefit.
It’s very difficult for people to break free of the influence of a foreign nation when they sincerely believe that foreign nation gave them their savior, as is the case of the millions of Christians who blindly support the Jewish state of Israel. These voters, combined with the money from Zionist billionaire Sheldon Adelson, is why Donald Trump puts Israel’s interests above the interests of America. We need the Deism of some of America’s key founders to break free of that dangerous illusion and trap.
George Washington held Deistic beliefs, as did some of America’s most important founders and revolutionaries.
Thomas Paine’s book on God, Deism and religion, The Age of Reason, made it clear that God gave us reason and not religion. It also objectively examined the ancient Jews and openly pointed out their ungodly nature. For example Paine wrote, “The Jews made no converts; they butchered all.”
Paine also wrote in The Age of Reason:
“Could we permit ourselves to suppose that the Almighty would distinguish any nation of people by the name of His chosen people, we must suppose that people to have been an example to all the rest of the world of the purest piety and humanity, and not such a nation of ruffians and cut-throats as the ancient Jews were; a people who, corrupted by and copying after such monsters and impostors as Moses and Aaron, Joshua, Samuel and David, had distinguished themselves above all others on the face of the known earth for barbarity and wickedness.
If we will not stubbornly shut our eyes and steel our hearts, it is impossible not to see, in spite of all that long-established superstition imposes upon the mind, that the flattering appellation of His chosen people is no other than a lie which the priests and leaders of the Jews had invented to cover the baseness of their own characters, and which Christian priests, sometimes as corrupt and often as cruel, have professed to believe.”
Since our actions are based on our thoughts and beliefs, I hope we soon have a revolution in religion based on our innate God-given reason and Deism. This will allow us to break free of the excessive influence of Israel and further away from waging wars for the Jewish state of Israel. It will make for a much happier and peaceful world.
Bob Johnson is a freelance writer in the Tampa area of Florida. He was raised Roman Catholic, but after a stint in Marine Corps infantry and reading Thomas Paine’s The Age of Reason he became a Deist.
In 1993 he founded the World Union of Deists, and in 1996 he launched the first website devoted to Deism. He is the author of God Gave Us Reason, Not Religion, Deism: A Revolution in Religion, A Revolution in You and An Answer to C.S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity. He has also written the introduction to Thomas Paine’s The Age of Reason, The Complete Edition and Principles of Nature by Elihu Palmer.