After reading this alarming tidbit about Representative Virgil H. Goode Jr., Republican of Virginia, where he attacks an incoming representative for swearing their oath on the Koran, Iâ€™ll assume three things, safely:
1. When he took office, Goode swore an oath to defend the Constitution, which is required by Article 6 – â€œThe Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the
2. Goode has actually read the Constitution, including the next clause of Article 6, â€œâ€¦no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the
3. Goode swore said oath on a Bible (in an unofficial ceremony, as the official one rightly does not use one).
Conclusion: Goode should switch positions and support oaths for representatives on a Koran, because quite frankly it doesnâ€™t look like his oath on a Bible is worth much.
I blame high school history textbooks for this. If everyone knew, for example, Thomas Jefferson was a Deist that wrote up his own version of the Gospels because he thought the various miracles and the resurrection were a load of hooey, then maybe kids would grow up appreciating the secular, philosophical miracle that the Constitution represents – that via the 1st Amendment, it guarantees a safe place for worship in any way one may see fit, to any deity or deities that one may believe in.
If Goode doesnâ€™t believe in that, I have to question if he is really American as apple pie as he comports himself to be – or something else – something less, something narrower. And if so, he deserves the fieriest opposition available.