189) As such, Christian nations had a duty to act morally, like their citizens.
192) Brewer opposed American imperialism, and especially the acquisition of new territory as a result of the Spanish-American War, because Christian nations promoted peace and were fair in their dealing with other peoples.
In Brewer's assessment, Christian nations promoted freedom of belief and practice, but refrained from promoting particular religious viewpoints or seeking religious conformity.
178) See BREWER, supra note 63, at 23 (noting that Christian nations gave their citizens the "utmost freedom" and afforded the best opportunity for societal advancement).
5) Judges and commentators have panned the Christian nation pronouncement as "arrogant" and anachronistic, an "aberration," or at best, as stating a mere "truism.
11) The Christian nation declaration has also served as ready ammunition for arguments that the Court's church-state decisions since 1940 have strayed from both history and legal precedent,(12) and that Christian principles deserve (re)incorporation into the warp and woof of America's political and legal institutions.
Most modern discussions of the Christian nation declaration, both pro and con, have failed to examine the statement from the viewpoint of its author or the context within which it was written.
One reason that the Christian nation declaration has been so misinterpreted is that modern commentators have failed to appreciate the nuances in Brewer's statements and the historical context within which they were made.
Though primarily an extra-legal concept, the Christian nation maxim was also embraced by judges, lawyers and legal commentators.
This Essay will examine both the Holy Trinity decision and its author within the context of its time to discover the legal significance of the declaration that "America is a Christian nation.
However, to call Brewer a social Darwinist or to write off his Christian nation declaration as the ramblings of a religious ideologue oversimplifies his personal philosophy which was informed, but not necessarily controlled, by his deep faith.
115) As the nation entered the final two decades of the century, however, the de facto Protestant establishment was breaking down, with some judges siding with Catholic and Jewish claimants while openly declaring that America was no longer a Christian nation.
118) Unlike earlier court decisions that had espoused the Christian nation maxim,(119) Holy Trinity raised no issues of constitutional significance but called merely for the interpretation of a minor federal immigration statute.
Warren because America was a Christian nation where the law recognized the importance of Christianity and accommodated its practice.
However, not to be dissuaded, Brewer provided several pages of support for how America was a Christian nation, quoting extensively from colonial charters and early state constitution provisions that acknowledged God or recognized Protestantism.