Is the separation of church and state set out in the Constitution?

Answer by Kris Rosvold:

*DEEP sigh*
OK.  We'll break it down one more time:
From Wiki (yes it's THAT EASY to find)
Here's what the Constitution SAYS in the First Amendment:
First Amendment to the United States Constitution

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or  prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of  speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to  assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."[1]

The Prohibition:  Congress shall make no law respecting
Ok… Respecting (or about, or pertaining to) WHAT?

Part 1 Before the comma
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,
We know that "respecting" Means "About or Pertaining to"
SO… Congress is as of this point under a Blanket Prohibition which specifically prohibits them from using Law to speak about an establishment of religion… can't say ANYTHING in Law either for it or against it.

What's an establishment?
So… here's that bit:  es·tab·lish·ment  [ih-stab-lish-muh

nt]  Show IPA   noun 
1. the act or an instance of establishing.
2. the state or fact of being established.
3. something established; a constituted order or system.
4. ( often initial capital letter ) the existing power structure in society; the dominant groups in society and their customs or institutions; institutional authority (usually preceded by the  ): The Establishment believes exploring outer space is worth any tax money spent. 
5. ( often initial capital letter ) the dominant group in a field of endeavor, organization, etc. (usually preceded by the  ): the literary Establishment.

So to translate this into modern English:
"Congress may not EVER use Law to speak about Religion, they also may not EVER limit the freedom of speech, or the freedom of the Press, or restrict the Right of the People to peaceably assemble to demand a redress of grievances from the government."

Seems pretty crystal clear to me…!  In short government may NOT ever use Law to support religion, but they ALSO can't ever use Law to stop you from supporting it in your private life.

Is the separation of church and state set out in the Constitution?

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