This little history lesson from Kenneth Davis comes close to attacking a straw man. But the lesson is a valuable one. One of the worst things about most, if not all, religions is intolerance. When you have “the truth” everybody else is automatically “wrong”. It’s worth reading the whole thing to see just how and why the framers made sure ours was a secular government.
In his litany of religious intolerance in America Davis even soft-sells it.
At about the same time, Joseph Smith founded a new American religion—and soon met with the wrath of the mainstream Protestant majority. In 1832, a mob tarred and feathered him, marking the beginning of a long battle between Christian America and Smith’s Mormonism. In October 1838, after a series of conflicts over land and religious tension, Missouri Governor Lilburn Boggs ordered that all Mormons be expelled from his state. Three days later, rogue militiamen massacred 17 church members, including children, at the Mormon settlement of Haun’s Mill. In 1844, a mob murdered Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum while they were jailed in Carthage, Illinois. No one was ever convicted of the crime.
Boggs didn’t just want the Mormons expelled, he issued an “extermination order”. It wasn’t rescinded until 1976. (Still, I doubt you’ll hear a better name today than Lilburn Boggs. Gotta use that one in a movie script some day.)
Do read the whole thing for a reminder of just how beastly religious people have been to each other in this country, even starting hundreds of years before it was a country. Then rejoice that the constitution specifically keeps religion out of government both for the good of the country and the good of religion.