Editor’s note: This is in response to the article “Removal of Ten Commandments questioned” published in the Thursday, March 8, edition.

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Why has the Ten Commandments plaque remained on a wall at the St. Louis County Courthouse in Hibbing since 1958?

The rationale for hanging the plaque had to be to serve as a reminder to its viewers that the Ten Commandments represent God’s government over humanity. God commands us to give up wrongful ways of living and to follow His will: that which is good and true and just.

The Gallup polling organization estimates that about 3 out of 4 Americans identify with the Christian religion. Seventh President Andrew Jackson wrote: “The Bible is the book upon which this Republic rests.”

There are many references to God and scripture in our nation’s capitol. Directly above the chief justice’s chair is a tablet signifying the Ten Commandments. When the speaker of the house in the U.S. Congress looks up, his eyes look into the face of Moses.

John Locke was an English thinker and writer whose philosophy explained that natural rights based on the laws of nature come from a supernatural force, a being Christians and Jews refer to as God.

Locke also said that when we are born we have God-given inalienable rights — including individualism and personal liberty. Written in 1689, the Second Treatise of Government influenced many of our founding fathers; Thomas Jefferson used Locke’s principle of inalienable rights as a basis for the Declaration of Independence.

America was founded upon spiritual idealism: In the unanimous Declaration of the 13 United States of America, Jefferson wrote: “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

As to the removal of the Ten Commandments plaque, it appears to be a bullying tactic by over-zealous atheists and clever speechifier lawyers. There is no reference whatsoever in the U.S. Constitution to the “separation of church and state.”

Article I of the Bill of Rights with respect to the first clause pertaining to religion, states: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Period.

H.E. Fosdick once described an atheist as man who has no invisible means of support.

Are we a government of, by and for the people? Or are we putty in the unctuous hands of those who disrespect everything God-fearing citizens stand for?

“The people are the masters of both Congress and courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert it!” So said Abraham Lincoln, an honest attorney.

James Hooper

St. Cloud, Minn.

Hibbing native and HHS Class of 1965

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