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In this section we look at how some religious right authors have misquoted the framers of the Constitution. While most accomodationists are (as much as we disagree with them) competent scholars, some popular conservative authors have stooped to taking the framers' writings out of context, or fabricating quotes altogether. Some of these misquotations have popped up again and again on the usenet, often without any source citations, and always without any attempt to verify accuracy. Here we list some of the more popular of these misquotations. Additionally, we look at one example of where accomodationists have accused separationists of inaccurately characterizing the background of a quotation.

If you have a misquotation you want to see included on this page, please let us know. Include a source citation so that we can verify the nature of the misquote. 

Misquoting by the Religious Right:

Let's begin with some quotations we've researched ourselves:

Now let's turn to a list of quotations that frequently appear in religious right literature, but are now admitted by religious right leaders to be either doubtful or false. The source of this list is none other than David Barton, an important accomodationist author we criticize extensively in our responses to the quotations above, and elsewhere in this website. Briefly, Barton has released a press statement stating that nine of the quotations appearing in his book The Myth of Separation (including the first two above) are of doubtful authenticity (one of these has since been authenticated; see below). Additionally, he lists three others that are popularly cited by other conservative authors, but are probably not true. A good article summarizing Barton's list can be found in the July/August 1996 edition of Church and State, A separationist publication.

Barton lists the following quotations as unconfirmed (i.e., no one has been able to trace them to an original source):

Additionally, Barton lists the following quote as inaccurate:
An alleged case of misquoting by Separationists:

Does the 1797 Treaty of Tripoli say that "The Government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion?" 

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