The neo-Christian agenda seeks to take this country in a horrific direction. Casually throwing around the expression "Christian Nation" feels to them like an affirmation of their commitment to the Constitution.
If Bill Donahue traveled a little more he'd know there are many countries where attempts to censor criticism of religion -- as the Catholic League attempts to do -- are rightly considered archaic and repulsive.
I don't think getting burned is the most important step in a group's American journey. Communities achieve their American identity not so much by knowing the fire themselves, but by refusing to let others get burned.
In 2009, Asia Bibi, a 45-year old Christian woman, was asked to fetch water while working as a farmhand. Now, she has been in prison for a year and faces a death sentence under the damning blasphemy laws of Pakistan.
In the Oct. 2010 issue of Smithsonian, I delve into the real history of America's attitudes about religion, and it is a far different picture from the tidy tableau and storybook version of tolerance that we tell our children.