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Unread post December 11th, 2012, 4:58 pm
ledbetterx777 Observer

Observer

i am trying to find any and all info i can about Mississippi's state constitution article 14, section 265 which states that "No person who denies the existence of a Supreme Being shall hold any office in this state". How would one go about filing a petition to have this removed from the state constitution? has it been tried? where to file and how? basically i have no clue of what i am doing nor where to begin with this nor if this is even the proper place to ask. Thanks in advance for any help or info.

Unread post December 11th, 2012, 8:55 pm
johnny Novice

Novice

What is your motivation for removing it?

Seems to me if an atheist wanted to hold office they could just claim Elvis as the Supreme Being and go on as usual.

Unread post December 12th, 2012, 5:43 am
Weston White Lead Researcher

Lead Researcher
User avatar

Location: Fresno, California

Hello:

You can search for your state’s public law at: http://www.law.cornell.edu/states/mississippi#codes (for other states: http://www.law.cornell.edu/statutes.html#state).

As to whom you should contact for the purpose of amending or repealing the laws of your state that would be your own state legislature, governor, and also your local/municipal district representative (you can easily www.startpage.com search for them by querying the contact Webpages for your own state, city, and county); and by subsequently implementing a letter-writing, emailing, or petitioning campaign, for example.

And the states providing for public acknowledgement in a Creator are:

Arkansas
State Constitution, Article 19 Section 1:
No person who denies the being of a God shall hold any office in the civil departments of this State, nor be competent to testify as a witness in any court.

Maryland
Declaration of Rights, Article 36:
“That as it is the duty of every man to worship God in such manner as he thinks most acceptable to Him, all persons are equally entitled to protection in their religious liberty; wherefore, no person ought by any law to be molested in his person or estate, on account of his religious persuasion, or profession, or for his religious practice, unless, under the color of religion, he shall disturb the good order, peace or safety of the State, or shall infringe the laws of morality, or injure others in their natural, civil or religious rights; nor ought any person to be compelled to frequent, or maintain, or contribute, unless on contract, to maintain, any place of worship, or any ministry; nor shall any person, otherwise competent, be deemed incompetent as a witness, or juror, on account of his religious belief; provided, he believes in the existence of God, and that under His dispensation such person will be held morally accountable for his acts, and be rewarded or punished therefore either in this world or in the world to come.”

Article 37:
“That no religious test ought ever to be required as a qualification for any office of profit or trust in this State, other than a declaration of belief in the existence of God;”

Massachusetts
State Constitution, Article 3:
“Any every denomination of Christians, demeaning themselves peaceably, and as good subjects of the commonwealth, shall be equally under the protection of the law: and no subordination of any one sect or denomination to another shall ever be established by law.”
Comment: Apparently non-Christians are not “equally under the protection of the law”.

Note: this part of the Massachusetts’ State Constitution was amended. Here is Article XI of the Articles of Amendment:

“Article XI. Instead of the third article of the bill of rights, the following modification and amendment thereof is substituted.

As the public worship of God and instructions in piety, religion and morality, promote the happiness and prosperity of a people and the security of a republican government; — therefore, the several religious societies of this commonwealth, whether corporate or unincorporate, at any meeting legally warned and holden for that purpose, shall ever have the right to elect their pastors or religious teachers, to contract with them for their support, to raise money for erecting and repairing houses for public worship, for the maintenance of religious instruction, and for the payment of necessary expenses: and all persons belonging to any religious society shall be taken and held to be members, until they shall file with the clerk of such society, a written notice, declaring the dissolution of their membership, and thenceforth shall not be liable for any grant or contract which may be thereafter made, or entered into by such society: — and all religious sects and denominations, demeaning themselves peaceably, and as good citizens of the commonwealth, shall be equally under the protection of the law; and no subordination of any one sect or denomination to another shall ever be established by law.” [See Amendments, Arts. XLVI and XLVIII, The Initiative, section 2, and The Referendum, section 2].”

Mississippi
State Constitution. Article 14 (“General Provisions”), Section 265
“No person who denies the existence of a Supreme Being shall hold any office in this state.”

See page 117: http://www.sos.ms.gov/links/ed_pubs/pub ... tution.pdf

North Carolina
State Constitution, Article 6 Section 8
“Disqualifications of office. The following persons shall be disqualified for office: First, any person who shall deny the being of Almighty God.”

South Carolina
State Constitution, Article VI, Section 2:
“No person who denies the existence of the Supreme Being shall hold any office under this Constitution.”

Section 5 (The oath of office ends in): “So help me God.”

Tennessee
State Constitution, Article 9 Section 2:
“No person who denies the being of God, or a future state of rewards and punishments, shall hold any office in the civil department of this state.”

Texas
State Constitution, Article 1 Section 4:
“No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office, or public trust, in this State; nor shall any one be excluded from holding office on account of his religious sentiments, provided he acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being.”



In closing I will quickly note that America is fundamentally a Christian nation beset by republicanism; wherefore all individuals possess immutable Creator —God— granted rights, regardless if you are atheist, anarchist, indifferent, nihilist, or whatever. Ergo, it is a bit difficult to trust in affirmation when you effectively believe in nothing hereafter.

Although I suppose an alternative option is to follow the lead of California:

OATH OF AFFIRMATION: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of California; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I well and faithfully discharge the duties upon which I am about to enter.”
California Constitution Article XX Section 3

CGC 1367-1369: Jail term for signing Oath of Affirmation but not believing in it. Penalty for membership in unlawful groups.

CGC 3100-3109: All public employees are disaster service workers and therefore must take the Oath.

CGC 18150-18155: (Penalties for not signing Oath.)
EXCEPTION: Employee unions may bargain for exemption from Oath.

CGC 18200: Subversives not to be employed, (except by union contract).

Unread post December 12th, 2012, 5:29 pm
ledbetterx777 Observer

Observer

awesome reply! thank you very much. to answer the first my motivation is basically from a point of principle. i should not be excluded for reasons of belief or lack therof, nor made to feel as though i have to lie about a fundamental right which is allegedly protected under the constitution. i shall proceed with this first by simply writing to my representatives and seeing how that goes and then i shall take it from there. thanks again very much and i hope i can update with developments in the future.

Unread post December 13th, 2012, 11:39 am
johnny Novice

Novice

‘Man of the worldy mind! Do you believe in me or not?’


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