It’s been 180 years since Texans claimed their version of American freedom in a move that closely mirrors the American Revolution itself, driven largely by a tyranny of religion and economically unreasonable taxation. Reasons for separation from the Crown of England only 60 years prior were essentially reconfirmed on the Western frontier during the Texas Revolution.
Theism, deism, agnosticism—diversity of religion—and atheism (diversity of people) are meant to exist simultaneously in peace (Western culture) on American soil and thus a revolution of Texans was imminent. The expectation of a state of secularism is a necessary component. This ideal has been expedient to the success of the United States as well as to social progress in relatively quick and peaceful style when compared with other parts of the world, and is an ideal expected to be upheld . . . all the way down to state, county and municipal levels.
Religious Freedom is won, with secular lines drawn by our Founding Fathers
Today, whether you’re from Texas or not, if you’ve lived here awhile then you probably know at least one religious person, maybe a few. Odds indicate as much, with southern states including Texas being overwhelmed by religiosity. In Texas, 64% of the general populace are "highly religious", according to most recent Pew Research. These individuals could be of any religious sect, by living in a land intended to be free for such devotions as well as free for nonbelievers.
While many religious Texans pride themselves on the symbolism of giant crosses, widespread public prayer and outstanding houses of worship, their secular and non-religious secular Texan counterparts have largely gently tolerated these gestures as public manifestations of the freedom held so dearly by all Americans. Religious hubris, however, has not gone unnoticed. In the face of a growing evangelism—which includes deflection of public tax dollars to grow private religious institutions and thus increase power to affect freedoms of the nonreligious (or other-religious) through business and legislation—religious Nones have continue to evolve.
Even religion evolves
Though church-unaffiliated Nones steadily grow as a demographic, paths to individual lifestyle and freedom of choice are being eroded by social dictates and recent sectarian legislation. This could be part due to secular churchgoers and even non-attending cultural sympathizers who, while they don’t live strictly by the books of religion, are nonetheless involved (in a spirit of community) and tow the voting lines that could otherwise keep our freedom-visions afloat. Consequently, blowback by religious evangelism has been permissibly harsh. The recent and odd spate of inappropriate religion-motivated politics and legislative actions, as well as persuasions in such places as public schools and small businesses, has bloomed like an unexpected explosion in recent decades.
Evolution of reason is our device
Secular religious as well as the Nones will undoubtedly continue to revolutionize as the meaning of "American" is challenged in the form of pressures to conform to religious or sectarian ideals. Our greatest hope is among our voters, whose actions in regard to politics and governance of a free society mean so much. We must all be conscious enough—aware of the issues we and our neighbors face daily—and exactly how those issues are tied into our governance of ourselves.
This year’s early voting returns in Texas indicate that a greater number of constituents have taken these issues to heart. According to TXElects, “Texas Republican primary turnout has passed 2.5 million voters, more than 1 million above the previous GOP record set in 2010.”
Texas is doing better regarding getting to the polls, but obviously it will take more Secular Values Voters being politically active at all levels, always in attention of those who intend to represent us. The following has never been more true:
“Religiously unaffiliated Americans are the new powerhouse political bloc. But only if they vote.” http://yhoo.it/21zLmBO
The Secular Values Voter
It's noteworthy that much progress has already been made regarding vaccination exemptions. For example, the people of California recently won big when in 2015 Governor Jerry Brown signed SB-277, a bill designed to require all students of public and private schools to vaccinate in order to attend . . . a bill supported in spirit and effort by the Secular Coalition.
To those who work to provide these documents and other resources and those who work to disseminate the most-accurate information possible, like TXElects, Pew Research Center, The Secular Coalition for America and affiliated groups who support the people of America, the great State of Texas (and all the rest) in a continued spirit of freedom for all.
Contact [email protected] with any questions.