The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Southern slugfest
May 23, 2024
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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
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Texas A&Ms attendance for the Alabama game was at 108,101 fans ranking it at the third largest game in Kyle Field history.(Ishika Samant/The Battalion)
‘The Mexican 12th Man’
Ian Curtis, Sports Reporter • May 30, 2024

Growing up in the hills of Monterrey, Mexico, Pedro and Carlos Luna were surrounded by soccer.  Clad in the gold and blue of Tigres UANL,...

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Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
Bee-hind the scenes
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 1, 2024

The speakers turn on. Static clicks. And a voice reads “Your starting lineup for the Texas A&M Aggies is …” Spectators hear that...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
'I was terrified'
April 25, 2024
Scenes from 74
Scenes from '74
April 25, 2024
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Mail Call – Tax dollars should not fund religion in any form

Scharn claims the Framers’ sole intent for the establishment clause was to prevent an official state church. Yet, not even two paragraphs later, he acknowledges Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists as the basis of the “separation” interpretation.
While calling it unofficial, he also falsely claims that this is the only appearance of the separation doctrine, when it in fact also appears in more explicit form in the (quite official) Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, authored by Jefferson. I quote: “No man shall be compelled to … support any religious worship, place or ministry whatsoever.” Since taxation is by its very nature compulsion, taxes are what pay for military buildings and courthouses, and as the BSA is admittedly religious in nature, it follows that such use of taxpayer resources fails this test.
There is clear precedent. In 1811, President James Madison, the author of the Constitution and a devout Christian, vetoed a law allowing the distribution of public land to Baptist churches. Madison’s reasoning? “(The law) comprises a principle and precedent for the appropriation of funds of the United States for the use and support of religious societies.”
The First Amendment reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” In his column, Scharn claims, “Congress has never made a law establishing a particular religion.” Notice how the goal posts shift? There is a distinction to be drawn between “establishing a religion” and “respecting an establishment of religion.” Faith-based charities, the Boy Scouts and the Ten Commandments all embody laudable principles, but to compel people to support them through taxation constitutes an unjust violation of the civil liberties this country was founded upon.

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