Separation of church and state is profoundly wise
While noble in principle, churches can behave very badly when they believe they exercise civic power, writes John Crown
Published 17/04/2011 | 05:00
'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"
First amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America, 1791
The constitutional separation of church and state has shown a timeless wisdom. The United States, a country originally founded by members of the same Protestant and Catholic faiths that were slaughtering each other in religiously inspired wars and burning each other at stakes in Europe for holding perceived heretical views, declared itself a country where religious liberty would be protected, and where neither religious persecution nor religious interference in civic matters would be tolerated.