A Typical Example of Misreading Jefferson and Church and State

[Photo of Jerry Newcombe and Senator Jim Inhofe]

The founding fathers gave us religious freedom, including the fact that there would be no national denomination. Court decisions of the last 70 years or so have turned the Constitution on its head, using a misinterpretation of Thomas Jefferson to give us “the separation of church and state,” which often devolves into the separation of God and state—something the founding fathers, including Jefferson, would disagree with. We hear of the fallout of this false reading of Jefferson all the time.

For the last couple decades, Senator Jim Inhofe has ridden a horse in the Tulsa Christmas parade, year after year. And he has loved it. With a twinkle in his eyes, he proudly says, “There are only two things I do well. Ride horses and fly planes.” He was all set to ride in the parade last year for the nth time, when he found out that they had dropped “Christmas” from the name of the parade. Now it’s just the “holiday” parade. He hadn’t realized it until he showed up last year. So he said then (and he says now), “I’m not riding in this.”

Co-author Jerry Newcombe had the privilege of interviewing Sen. Inhofe for television on a variety of issues about a few years ago for D. James Kennedy Ministries. In his interview, the senator happened to mention his recent decision to boycott the parade because of the name change—which is just one more example of what’s been called the war on Christmas. Said the Senator, “Now they’re making a big issue in Tulsa, Oklahoma that I’m refusing to ride, as I’ve done for decades, in the Christmas parade because they took Jesus out of the Christmas parade. Well, if He goes, I go.”[1]

If more people were courageous like Sen. Inhofe, we’d probably not see the further secularization of the Christmas season. Perhaps, I should say “holiday season.” An interesting irony of the anti-Christmas forces that use the word holiday is the origin of the word….holiday is a contraction of holy day—that’s why there’s only one “L” in holiday . . . I wonder what “holy day” that would be referring to?

[1] Transcript of a television interview on location in Washington, DC of Senator Jim Inhofe by Jerry Newcombe (Ft. Lauderdale: Coral Ridge Ministries, 2010).

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