Published DateTo the editor,
The more that I study the aftermath of the Civil War and the reconstruction, the more terrifying for America the U.S. Supreme Court decisions concerning prayer and scripture reading in public schools seem to be. For what if God took Abraham Lincoln at his word in his address at Independence Hall on Feb. 22 1861 when he said, "I have often inquired of myself, what great principle or idea it was that kept this confederacy so long together. It was not the mere matter of the separation of the colonies from the motherland; but that sentiment in the Declaration of Independence which gave liberty, not alone to the people of this country, but, I hope, to the world, for all future time. It was that which gave promise that in due time the weight would be lifted from the shoulders of all men. This is a sentiment embodied in the Declaration of Independence. Now, my friends, can this country be saved upon that basis? If it can, I will consider myself one of the happiest men in the world, if I can help to save it. If it cannot be saved upon that principle, it will be truly awful. But if this country cannot be saved without giving up that principle, I was about to say I would rather be assassinated on this spot than surrender it."
What if God allowed President Lincoln to be assassinated because he knew that Lincoln would be too lenient with the ex confederates, and that under Lincoln the 14th and 15th Amendments to the Constitution might never have been passed. What if this was why God allowed Andrew Johnson to be humbled by impeachment, so that Congress could pass the 14th and 15th Amendments. Considering the attitude of prejudice toward the black man, that was common at this time both in the north and south; some historians consider it surprising that Congress did as much as it did for the black man. What if the answer to that is that out of concern for the former black slaves, God caused these things to be so. What if we did not apply these amendments for the help of black people for nearly 100 years. And what if as soon as the descendants of these men and women said enough is enough, we began using the 14th Amendment to throw God out of our schools. What do you think God will do with a people this faithless?