Conservatism, Religion, and the First Amendment

If you remove one set of religious assumptions received from a particular religious tradition, you do not, therefore, have a social order that is not based on religious assumptions. You simply substitute some other assumptions for the ones taken away. Every civil and social order rests upon assumptions that are religious in nature because they are attempts to answer ultimate questions. The notion that it can be otherwise—that there is such a thing as a purely rationally deduced set of rules about human behavior or government—is an artifact of modernity.

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