Religion is not equivalent to race, by which I mean to say that islam is not a race.
If my memory serves, I seem to recall that there were objections to making catholics citizens of the new nation, as it was felt that they would consider themselves to be subject to the pope rather than the government. That objection was stilled after catholics had joined in the fight for independence.
There was also a requirement in at least one of the original state constitutions that any public servant had to sign a statement declaring themselves to be a Christian before they could take office.
("Delaware Constitution, Art. 22 (adopted Sept. 20, 1776):
Every person who shall be chosen a member of either house,
or appointed to any office or place of trust . . .
shall . . . make and subscribe the following declaration, to wit:
"I ________, do profess faith in God the Father,
and in Jesus Christ His only Son,
and in the Holy Ghost, one God, Blessed for evermore;
and I do acknowledge the holy scripture
of the Old and New Testaments to be
given by divine inspiration."")
There are some still on the books today as it was recognized that atheists were unable to take oaths - including the oath necessary to testify in a court of law - because any person who did not believe that they answer to God would have a reason to tell the truth if it was of more personal benefit to do otherwise.
("Arkansas, 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, 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; nor shall the Legislature prescribe any other oath of office than the oath prescribed by this Constitution.
Mississippi, Article 14, Section 265:
No person who denies the existence of a Supreme Being shall hold any office in this state.
North Carolina, Article 6, Section 8
The following persons shall be disqualified for office: Any person who shall deny the being of Almighty God.
South Carolina, Article 17, Section 4:
No person who denies the existence of a Supreme Being shall hold any office under this Constitution.
Tennessee, 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, 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.")
The concern, then as it should be now, was whether or not someone who is not a Christian would adhere to the form of government being set up by the founders. It was also understood and expected that any man of principle would serve his god over any government. The form of government they created was designed to work with the shared morals, values and ethics of Christianity while not allowing the state to impose a religion on any citizen. (Because only a fool would expect a man forced into a religion to respect or abide by the doctrines of that religion.) And that is why John Jay said that we should select and prefer Christians for our leaders. Because the government would not work without people of principle who believed that they were answerable to God rather than people.
It is admirable that Mr. Klavan wants to be welcoming. We all want to be welcoming of others. And, as the most generous nation on the face of the Earth, it is clear that Americans in general love to help other people. We want to help refugees and we hope that they will be grateful when we do. We think they will see our way of life and want to have it and seek to discover how it is done and adopt our ways.
But we also expect those other people to behave in a civilized manner and if they do not, you don't keep letting them in. The government has a primary duty to protect the rightful citizens of a nation that precludes any obligation of charity to the citizens of other nations. Just as you would not invite a child molester into your home and leave them alone with your children, you don't keep bringing in people who think it is their God given right to rape your women and children and kill whomever they please - as long as that person is not a follower of their barbaric death cult.
This is a situation that calls for peace through strength, not through charity. The followers of muhammed do not regard our charity as a reason to adopt our ways, they see it as an advertisement that we are exactly what their religion tells them we are - weak and required to submit to them. They regard our attempts at charity as their rightful spoils from non muslims. Negotiation, in that culture is an indicator of weakness rather than restraint.
We would be wise to make it clear that it is not.a sign of weakness.
"10 Dead flies cause the ointment of the apothecary to send forth a stinking savour: so doth a little folly him that is in reputation for wisdom and honour.
2 A wise man's heart is at his right hand; but a fool's heart at his left.
3 Yea also, when he that is a fool walketh by the way, his wisdom faileth him, and he saith to every one that he is a fool.
4 If the spirit of the ruler rise up against thee, leave not thy place; for yielding pacifieth great offences.
5 There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, as an error which proceedeth from the ruler:
6 Folly is set in great dignity, and the rich sit in low place.