DLaycock at mail.law.utexas.edu
Thu Feb 26 13:46:40 PST 2004
The term has the virtue of succinctly expressing tolerance and
inclusiveness. But as one of my Jewish friends once pointed out, from the
Jewish perspective, there is no such thing as a Judeo-Christian tradition
is an inherently Christian concept. The phrase makes sense to Christians,
who find their roots in Judaism. But from a Jewish perspective,
Christianity is something completely different from Judaism, a radical
discontinuity, and not a further development of the tradition. These two
perspectives may be equally committed to tolerance and inclusiveness, but
"Judeo-Christian tradition" captures that commitment only from one direction.
At 10:36 AM 2/26/2004 -0800, Volokh, Eugene wrote:
> I strongly suggest that the term be kept, and I plan to continue
>using it myself (though naturally only in those situations where it's apt).
>I do not think the term is insulting, and though apparently some people are
>insulted by it, I don't find that to be a sufficient reason to stop using a
>valuable and eminently proper term such as this. Nothing in the term
>"Judeo-Christian" inherently suggests that Judaism is an outmoded belief
>which was replaced by Christianity; and if a few people have abused it that
>way, that does not in my view damn the term altogether.
> The term simply reflects the accurate statement that there's a
>substantial common thread in mainstream Judaism and mainstream Christianity.
>Of course, no views will be equally shared by all groups within Judaism, or
>all groups with Christianity -- but that hardly means that we can't speak of
>the dominant views shared by each group.
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Malla Pollack [mailto:mpollack at law.uoregon.edu]
> > Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2004 9:35 AM
> > To: SILVERBURG Dr. Sanford; conlawprof at lists.ucla.edu
> > Cc: jmbitzer at catawba.edu
> > Subject: Re: Judeo-Christian Ethic
> > I do not know when "Judeo-Christian" came into use, but I
> > strongly suggest that the term be dropped. "Judeo-Christian"
> > is an insulting (To Jews) term used by Christians who want to
> > sound broad minded, but know little or nothing about Judaism.
> > Judaism is not (in its own mind) an outmoded belief which
> > was replaced by Christianity. Both have multitudinous forms.
> > The degree of agreement varies depending on which versions
> > are compared. Reinhold Niebuhr once admitted the crassness of
> > this term and then absent mindedly used it a few chapters
> > later in the same book. (Sorry I cannot now locate the cite.)
> > Justice Story's Commentaries on the Constitution said:
> > The real object of the First Amendment was not to
> > countenance, much less to advance Mohammedanism, or Judaism,
> > or infidelity, by prostrating Christianity; but to exclude
> > all rivalry among Christian sects....
> > Malla Pollack
> > Visiting, Univ. of Oregon, Law
> > 541-346-1599
> > mpollack at law.uoregon.edu
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "SILVERBURG Dr. Sanford" <SSILVER at catawba.edu>
> > To: <conlawprof at lists.ucla.edu>
> > Cc: <jmbitzer at catawba.edu>
> > Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2004 5:56 AM
> > Subject: Judeo-Christian Ethic
> > > In much--or at least some--of the discussion on constitutionalizing
> > > social
> > values, the
> > > term/concept of Judeo-Christian ethic has been tossed about. Can
> > > anyone
> > cite a
> > > source for the existence of this rubric used prior to 1930?
> > Indeed,
> > > was
> > it an established
> > > concept at the Constitutional Convention?
> > > Sanford Silverburg _______________________________________________
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> > >
> > >
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