America, Israel and Religious Political Conflicts

  • Communism is an ideology opposing religion.
  • Democracy is an ideology in itself with freedom of religion.
  • America has the choice between Trump and Biden in the November elections.

America in the world is the spokesman for freedom. The goal of America is that the world should be united by freedom. The Statue of Liberty stands in NY a symbol of freedom. America was found as a nation under One God with liberty and justice forever. The religion of America is freedom. Freedom accepts the major monotheistic religions Judaism, Christianity and Islam even though they are fundamentally against freedom.

However even though America accepts religion there are some conflicts over human rights which may be suppressed in religion. The conflicts between democracy and religion are one of the major problems in Israel politics. The conflict between freedom and religion is behind the opposition of America to Iran. It has also become a problem in America between liberals and conservatives.

Joe Biden has chosen Kamala Harris as his vice president candidate.

America was founded by Protestant Christians. Protestant philosophy is less rigid than Catholic. Protestant also has its laws and commandments like other religions. The sinner goes to hell; the righteous go to heaven. Judaism also teaches Jews reward and punishment for their actions. Judaism the first monotheistic religion has a Code of Jewish law called Shulcan Aruch obligating Jews to follow the Law of Moses according to Orthodox Judaism.

When living in the Biblical State of Israel, a Jew did not have free choice.  The laws of the religion were enforced by the Monarchy, the government. Jews living in the diaspora feel proud to be Jews and observe the laws of their religion with pride. They cannot be punished criminally for transgressing the law, but observance is left over to their conscience. Many Jews find it difficult to follow these laws for many reasons and assimilate their values to become reformed or conservative.

In America reformed and conservative Judaism is organized.  Their temples are found in every city in America. There is freedom in America or the democratic world for a Jew to choose to leave his Orthodox faith and become assimilated. Jews are a nation with a homeland, the land of Israel. Without the land of Israel Judaism is not a religion whether reformed, conservative or Orthodox. In the Modern State of Israel the Orthodox Rabbinate control religious affairs.

Christianity or Islam does not stress their homeland like Jews. Christianity has a center, the Vatican in Rome which is much too small for all Christians to live. Islam prays toward Mecca but there is no obligations in Christianity or Islam to live in these places. Jews today have no obligation to live in Israel but they know that Israel is their homeland. For Christianity and Islam the world is their home but not necessarily one place in the world.

Christianity became the religion of Rome and they built in the world the Byzantine Empire. When the Byzantine Empire was dissolved it left its presence in many nations in the world primarily in Europe. Islam attempted to bring the whole world under the Islam faith. They built in the world the Ottoman Empire which was dissolved after World War I but the remnants of the Ottoman Empire are found in many nations in the world primarily in the Middle East and in Turkey. Islam is spreading out today throughout the western world.  Christianity which became more progressive through Protestant faith found its new home in America.

President Trump more than his opponent Joe Biden stresses religion as an important part of America. Both candidates represent America and democracy but the connection of democracy with religion is more today on the Republican side. Liberal Democrats demand complete separation of  church and state like is written in the constitution. President Trump at Gateway Church in Texas spoke about Transition to Greatness, America needs God “Holy Spirit.”  At this meeting was stressed the need for prayer in difficult times and the need for America to strengthen its family unit.

The weakness of the family structure, families without a father leads to crime and drug use of innocent children. The connection of freedom with religion is the remedy for Americans disappointment with democracy.  Democrats use the conflict between religion and freedom as their excuse for supporting separation between church and state which may also become an excuse for anarchy. 71% of children that drop out of high school don’t have a father in their house.

The Bible teaches that God created man alone. To be alone has its advantages, mostly it allowed Adam freedom which he didn’t have after marrying Eve. A man gives up freedom when he gets married. It is a great sacrifice. Religion educates people that it is important to make this sacrifice. Freedom may be a good excuse for a man or woman not to get married. Freedom gives people permission to have sex out of wedlock.

All the three religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam do not allow sex out of marriage. There may be extreme circumstances where it may be permitted like for older people who have already made families divorced or have lost their loved ones. Young people need to be encouraged to marry. Public Schools in America are not doing the job to educate their children about the importance of marriage.

If public schools would do this job, it may not be as necessary to connect with religion. Religion will also make marriage a holy contract a unity of three, man, woman and God. Most of the laws of religion between man and man are taught also in a democracy not to kill, not to steal, respect the rights of other people, not to harm yourself or others. The general law of life as described by Hillel the sage, Do not do onto others as you would not want them to do to you.  Marriage is not a law in America. Marriage is left for free choice. President Trump and religious leaders can only advise children to marry.

Netanyahu and Gantz the leaders of the new Israeli government.

There are human rights which are stepped on every day called Woman abuse. Woman are abused because men do not respect their right to say no about sex. A woman can insist on marriage before sex. In the Garden of Eden, Eve was a free single woman. She enticed Adam to have sex with her to make children. Once they had sex, it was considered to be marriage. Each one had the responsibility to each other and to their children.

Marriage was not formal then like today under a canopy. Besides there was no other man in the world besides Adam. Adam could not cheat because there was no other woman. Religion came to stabilize the relationship between man and woman to make it a productive family unit. A man needs a woman; and a woman needs to have children. For a woman to be barren is sad for her.  The woman has the right to say “no” because she will be responsible for the children which come from her in the pain of childbirth.

Many people today are progressive. They were born from ancestors who were Orthodox Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu. Democracy gives people the freedom to approach the God of mercy and freedom with love while theocracy or religion preaches fear of God as the beginning of wisdom and suppression of freedom. Fear of God and the dangers of life are important in the education of children but adults enjoy their freedom. For this reason many people in the modern society believe in God but not in religion. When they begin to detach themselves from the religion of their parents, they sometimes also lose the reality and responsibility that marriage comes before sex. They can lose their purpose in life to build a family. At the same time they are happy to feel free and not under the restrictions of Orthodox religion.

The ultra-orthodox are not happy with democracy. In Israel there a schism between secular Jew and Orthodox. In the middle are Jews that have become progressive meaning less religious but still believing in God and their heritage. In America Trump is representing Americans that are hanging on with their religious values and faith. Even in America there is friction between Orthodox religious Muslim faith and the American ideal, like House Representative Ilhan Omer.

Ultra-Orthodox Chassidic Jews are mostly non-political but have difficulties with human rights laws of the American government concerning education. Their Chassidic schools are required to give several hours of secular education which make a problem with Orthodox Jewish education. Also in Israel the government has given the Ultra-Orthodox autonomy over their private school system and fund private school education. Nevertheless there are Orthodox Jewish Sects which refuse to take money from the Ministry of Education to remain completely independent. There was a recent confrontation between the Israel government and a private religious high school and seminar. The government objected to the techniques of education in the school that they were against human rights like giving cruel punishments.

Democracy will not allow religions to judge mankind and to punish them in the way of Genocide as in the past. Communist China still suppresses freedom with tactics of genocide. Iran can justify destroying Israel as a holy act. Genocide is given permission in the Bible and Koran. Many people reject Orthodox religion for these reasons.

Everyone needs some religion. There is a need for Orthodox religion preserving the old values but today the way is more to be progressive to try to integrate freedom with religion. The movement toward progressive spirituality began in Acre during the Ottoman Empire which started Baha”i faith.  Chassidism introduced a new way in Judaism to incorporate freedom with religion. President Trump is trying to unite America with religion for his Christian followers. He feels that through uniting America with the ethics of religion will MAGA Make America Great Again. Americans have free choice to vote for Biden or Trump in the election in November.

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David Wexelman

Rabbi David Wexelman is the  author of five books on the topics of World Unity and Peace, and Progressive Jewish Spirituality. Rabbi Wexelman is a member of the American Friends of Maccabee, a charitable organization helping the poor in the United States and in Israel.  Donations are tax deductible in the USA.

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