|The Constitutional Principle: Separation of Church and State
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Partially in reaction to the N.R.A,'s amendment, but also as a means of promoting their cause, Octavius B. Frothingham and Francis E. Abbot, founded The Index "A Weekly Paper Devoted to Free Religion," in 1870. Under Abbot's editorship The Index became the leading voice against the Christian Amendment.
In January 1873, Francis Ellingwood Abbot published the Nine Demands of Liberalism in THE INDEX:
1. We demand that churches and other ecclesiastical property shall be no longer exempt from taxation.
2. We demand that the employment of chaplains in Congress, and in the legislatures, in the navy and militia, and in prisons, asylums, and all other institutions supported by the public money, shall be discontinued.
3. We demand that all public appropriations for educational and charitable institutions of a sectarian character shall cease.
4. We demand that all religious services now sustained by the government shall be abolished; and especially that the use of the Bible in the public schools, whether ostensibly as a textbook or avowedly as a book of religious worship, shall be prohibited.
5. We demand that the appointment, by the president of the United States or by the governors of the various states, of all the religious festivals and fasts shall wholly cease,
6. We demand that the judicial oath in the courts and in all other departments of the government shall be abolished, and that a simple affirmation under the pains and penalties of perjury shall be established in its stead.
7. We demand that all laws directly or indirectly enforcing the observance of Sunday as the Sabbath shall be repealed.
8. We demand that all laws looking to the enforcement of "Christian" morality shall be abrogated and that all laws shall be conformed to the requirements of natural morality, equal rights and impartial liberty.
9. We demand that not only in the Constitution of the United States and of the several states, but also in the practical administration of the same, no privileges or advantage shall be conceded to Christianity or any other special religion; that our entire political system shall be founded and administered on a purely secular basis; and whatever changes shall prove necessary to this end shall be consistently, unflinchingly, and promptly made.
Source of Information:
The National Reform Association and the religious Amendments to the Constitution, 1864-1876. An unpublished Masters Thesis by Steven Keith Green Esq., Ph. D., University North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 1987. p. 37, Appendix A-149-150.)