Wise words from Gertrude Himmelfarb as we approach the 232nd anniversary of our republic.
"It is sometimes said, disparagingly, that the Founders had a utilitarian or functional view of religion, valuing it only as a social and political asset. But this view of religion, it seems to me, is not in itself unworthy. To look upon religion as the ultimate sanction of morality, and hence of a good society and a sound polity, is not demeaning to religion. On the contrary, it pays religion–and God–the great tribute of being essential to the welfare of mankind. And it does credit to man as well, who is deemed capable of subordinating his lower nature to his higher, of venerating and giving obeisance to someone and something above himself."
The Roads to Modernity by Gertrude Himmelfarb