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Atheists may not be welcome in Indy

Bruce Arians AP

Though in some respects the NFL locker room is behind the times, pro football blazed plenty of trails when it comes to racial equality.  When it comes to the acceptance of players who have unconventional religious beliefs, the NFL at times may not be quite as flexible.

Asked whether there’s a certain type of player Colts G.M. Ryan Grigson hopes to bring to the organization, interim coach Bruce Arians said this:  “A high quality person who has passion for football and cares about faith, family and football.”

But why is it relevant to care about faith?  Is there any legitimate connection between belief in a Higher Power and the ability to demonstrate the kind of speed and/or power that makes a guy a pro athlete?

I believe in God.  But I don’t believe that belief in God should be a factor in employment decisions of any kind.  (Except, of course, if a guy is applying to be a priest, minister, or rabbi.)  This country was founded by folks who risked their lives in part for the freedom to practice their religious beliefs, including no religious beliefs at all.  Folks who choose not to believe should never be disadvantaged.

Then there’s the fact that Article 49 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement prohibits discrimination because of “race, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, or activity or lack of activity on behalf of the NFLPA.”  Though it would be very difficult if not impossible to prove that a player has been not signed or released by a team like the Colts based on his religious beliefs (or lack thereof), a public comment from the coach that the G.M. factors faith into his decision-making process is the kind of thing that could fuel a grievance, especially if the player has other evidence supporting possible discrimination.

So here’s some free legal advice for all coaches, General Managers, owners, and anyone else who has hiring and firing power within an NFL team:  Don’t make religion part of your employment practices, and definitely don’t admit that it is.

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202 Responses to “Atheists may not be welcome in Indy”
  1. malachiofcourse says: Oct 31, 2012 6:49 PM

    preach!

  2. curfster33 says: Oct 31, 2012 6:52 PM

    This country was founded by Christians and spreading Christianity As well living by it. Our founding fathers believed that living in faith was the way we would be successful and continue that way. Do not be fooled by what schools have misinformed u about sir. I do agree that you could miss out on some real talent, talent that could become your competition. With that being said I have all the more respect for this guy and wish him the best. I hope in turn that the chemistry comradery and comfort within this unit is all the stronger. I applaud

  3. packattack1967 says: Oct 31, 2012 6:52 PM

    It’s his team, he can hire and fire whom he wishes.

  4. prosourcetalk says: Oct 31, 2012 6:52 PM

    Racists are certainly welcome in Indiana

  5. redwards29a says: Oct 31, 2012 6:53 PM

    As an atheist, thanks Mike.

  6. thegreatgabbert says: Oct 31, 2012 6:53 PM

    Ohhh, yeahhhh! Speak it brother! Speak it loud!

  7. Mike Florio says: Oct 31, 2012 6:54 PM

    You are incorrect.

  8. turgidsen says: Oct 31, 2012 6:55 PM

    Actually this country was settle and founded by people that persecuted for their religious beliefs. Not because they had no belief at all. They risk their for one country under God… Just saying

  9. trevor123698 says: Oct 31, 2012 6:56 PM

    “The Bible is the Book upon which this Republic rests.” Andrew Jackson, Seventh President of the United States

  10. godhatesclevelandsports says: Oct 31, 2012 6:57 PM

    Maybe it’s faith in Andrew Luck?

  11. thegreatgabbert says: Oct 31, 2012 6:58 PM

    …and lo, after many days and many nights, of much pizza and soft drinks, they came upon a website. But it was a bleak and Godless website.
    “We cannot tarry here amidst heathens and those of little faith” spaketh the many……

  12. bighedmac says: Oct 31, 2012 6:58 PM

    So I assume Chuck Pagano’s recovery from cancer is due to Jeebus and not science, right?

  13. kvvvv2391 says: Oct 31, 2012 6:59 PM

    What if I believe in Santa Claus & the Easter Bunny? Does that count?

  14. chrismbach says: Oct 31, 2012 7:00 PM

    What about faith that there is no higher moral authority than “live and let live”?

    What about faith that guilt isn’t due to the weight of natural, autonomous sin but due to societal indoctrination?

    What about faith that there might be a god/”God”, but that he/she/it couldn’t possibly be revealed in the ways we are told but rather must fit our human guidelines?

    Atheists have faith, too, and there is a variety of faiths within atheism.

    A good album to check out about Biblical faith, ruin, repentance and restoration is Timothy Brindle’s “The Restoration”.

  15. yousuxxors says: Oct 31, 2012 7:00 PM

    the first people here were religious outcasts but our founding fathers were not good Christians.

  16. redfield11 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:00 PM

    founding fathers weren’t christian, look it up

  17. coltzfan166 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:00 PM

    Just because he said “faith” doesn’t mean he specifically means God. He could just be saying someone who has faith in themselves, as in, believes in themselves.

    While I do agree with your stance Mike, I’m not sure if Grigson meant it that way, and probably had no idea you’d be writing a story over a sentence he said.

  18. mathomp3 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:00 PM

    Oct 31, 2012 6:52 PM
    This country was founded by Christians and spreading Christianity As well living by it. Our founding fathers believed that living in faith was the way we would be successful and continue that way. Do not be fooled by what schools have misinformed u about sir. I do agree that you could miss out on some real talent, talent that could become your competition. With that being said I have all the more respect for this guy and wish him the best. I hope in turn that the chemistry comradery and comfort within this unit is all the stronger. I applaud
    _____________________________________
    Don’t listen to what schools have taught you? There is one of the strongest cases that we atheists carry with us. Religious nuts are ignoring science and facts. Not to mention that many of our founding fathers believed that there was no place for religion in politics.

  19. cosanostra71 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:01 PM

    curfster is right for the wrong reasons. The founding fathers were likely talking about the freedom to practice Christianity and I would assume that they would have frowned upon atheism.

    But luckily for us they wrote freedom to all religion. And luckily for us, we have that freedom of religion (or lack there of).

  20. blackandbluedivision says: Oct 31, 2012 7:02 PM

    True. Makes the team prayer…mighty awkward.

  21. ghjjf says: Oct 31, 2012 7:02 PM

    People still believe in fairy tales?

  22. thelastpieceofcheese says: Oct 31, 2012 7:03 PM

    Vince Lombardi told his players “the most important things to you should be God, family and the Packers, in that order”

    However, atheism is a faith; faith there is no God.

  23. blackandbluedivision says: Oct 31, 2012 7:05 PM

    I’m confused. You can’t discriminate against a person based on their religious beliefs…if they don’t have any? You’re not discriminating against them because of their religious beliefs…your discriminating against them because of their “Choice.”

  24. chasewalshsl says: Oct 31, 2012 7:05 PM

    because Grigson is an idiot. put players on the field that can make plays.

  25. trevor123698 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:05 PM

    Curfster could have said it better than he did but he is dead on with what he said. Why you people are thumbing his comment down is only a matter of your extreme ignorance. THis nation is a christian nation and all of its laws are based upon the bible. At least until the ignorance of the modern day took hold on the fools that make up this once great nation

  26. nyyjetsknicks says: Oct 31, 2012 7:05 PM

    To be employed you have to believe in fairy tales.

  27. jboeke2 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:06 PM

    While I philosophically agree with you (I am not religious myself), when it comes to sports I believe that chemistry issues are a legitimate team concern and should be allowed to be weighed in the decision making process. If a guy is an openly combative atheist it could create issues if the majority of other players are men of faith. That being said, I don’t believe that Grigson wouldn’t employ a guy based on religion; if Andrew Luck was an atheist you think they don’t draft him? I don’t see that as realistic. It might be on the checklist (maybe he even believes faith makes a player more coachable, responsible, and harder working) but I have a hard time believing it’s anywhere near the top.

  28. pooflingingmonkey says: Oct 31, 2012 7:06 PM

    One of your best pieces, Florio. Couldn’t agree more.

  29. trevor123698 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:08 PM

    “We have staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government, far from it. We have staked the future of all our political institutions upon the capacity of mankind for self-government; upon the capacity of each of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God” -James Madison, Fourth President of America
    “Father of the American Constitution”

  30. colts419 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:08 PM

    As a life long colts fan and atheist grigsons comment made me die a little on the inside. Cmon man, like yall dont shove your rubbish in our faces enough, now I have to worry about my team looking over players because they have the same beliefs as me???

  31. berniesboys says: Oct 31, 2012 7:09 PM

    That’s right, Mike. You can be of any religion, as long as you’re Athiest.

  32. doresb21 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:10 PM

    Maybe he’s talking about Faith in oneself and the team?

    Just because he said the word Faith, doesn’t mean he’s saying you need to believe in God and a religion.

    Nice assumption lawyer

  33. robert831 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:11 PM

    I just lost even more respect for Indy…

  34. titansfan1950 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:12 PM

    A challenge to Florio: Include in your police blotter the percentage of arrestees with bible verses tattooed or their bodies.

    Christianity(and faith) origianated as an ethos on lifestyle and ethics. Amazing how many “men of faith” in the NFL(and the country) claim religion but have no moral fiber. (Mike Vick, Ray Lewis, Jim Brown, LT, Warren Moon, Ocho Cinco the list goes on and on)

  35. Mike Florio says: Oct 31, 2012 7:13 PM

    Yeah, the word “faith” gets used that way all the time. Eye roll.

  36. robotrav says: Oct 31, 2012 7:13 PM

    Arians is simply reciting a cliched Lombardi phrase.

  37. lilrob10201 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:13 PM

    We now know what players can say when they are about to get traded to the Colts.

  38. micklethepickle says: Oct 31, 2012 7:14 PM

    curfster33 says: a whole bunch of inaccuracies

    Okay, I hear the argument all the time that the “founding fathers” were Christian, and it is patently FALSE! In fact, during the Constitutional Convention, Ben Franklin suggested opening each day’s session with a prayer, and it was overwhelmingly voted down. In the words of Alexander Hamilton, “We don’t need foreign intervention”.

    Most of the educated men of that time were ‘Deists’, which is someone who believes in the moral messages of the Bible but not in all the magical events. Jefferson actually strongly endorsed the publishing of a Bible that had all of the miracles and other magical events removed. They would be aghast at the fundamentalism in this country today.

    So no, our country was most assuredly NOT Christian – probably why they put in that whole religion clause in the 1st Amendment, you think?

  39. maiphatdong says: Oct 31, 2012 7:14 PM

    Hes a lying sack of crap, just like all religous freaks. Whatever is convienient at the moment for some sort of gain, is what they practice. If Montana, Elway, Marino, Brady, all came out as being non believers, you know damn straight he would still trade or draft them if he had the chance.

  40. butzmark says: Oct 31, 2012 7:16 PM

    Phil Savage said something similar while with the Browns..something like I look for good Christian Athletes.
    Made me wonder when he passed on Haloti Ngata for Kameron Wimbley. Ngata is a Mormon, a faith Billy Graham took of his list of cults in time for the coming election.

  41. rajbais says: Oct 31, 2012 7:17 PM

    I agree. To add onto the thesis, Atheists are not immoral because They do not believe in a god. People are only immoral when they do injustice or harm to others.

  42. timlally says: Oct 31, 2012 7:17 PM

    if he believes that religion indicates high moral values and he thinks someone with high moral values is someone he wants than I don’t think that is a problem. Just like it isn’t a problem to choose a family man over a single man because he is more likely to be grounded and stable.

  43. lesliedevereaux says: Oct 31, 2012 7:18 PM

    Believing in God does not make you a Christian; it just shows that you’re aware that God is real. Belief does nothing. “You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.” James 1:19. Mike, I hope that your belief turns into much more than that.

  44. buckybadger says: Oct 31, 2012 7:22 PM

    curfster33, this country was founded on people who believed in the freedom of religion as well as the freedom from religion. Franklin’s stances on religion are well known and would surprise you greatly if you ever read him past high school. Not the character you think he was, neither was Adams. Both where very progressive minds.

  45. tigerlilac says: Oct 31, 2012 7:23 PM

    Mike, I appreciate you trying to be open-minded on the topic but pleased don’t refer to atheists as having “unconventional religious beliefs”.

    The absence of faith in a supernatural deity is not a religious belief. Quite the opposite.

  46. xcerebus1 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:23 PM

    odd….no comment about the ‘family’ part? What if they’re orphans? Can you give them some legal advice for that one too?

  47. cmgww says: Oct 31, 2012 7:23 PM

    Talk about taking someone’s comments out of context!! The line “faith, family, football” is often repeated on all levels of football by players/coaches. By no means did Arians say anything along the lines of “atheists aren’t welcome”…

  48. buckybadger says: Oct 31, 2012 7:24 PM

    I feel the Packers have been doing this for chemistry reasons and as an Athiest I am not offended. I don’t look for these guys to be great minds. If the coaches feel those guys will follow him easier I probably wouldn’t argue.

  49. NakedCowboy! says: Oct 31, 2012 7:25 PM

    you really need to have faith if you live in indiana… seriously… its a sh!thole…

  50. moecincydude says: Oct 31, 2012 7:25 PM

    A man of faith? What does that have to do with being a good football player or person. See the cursades, men who were raped by preists, and all the other messed up stuff that religion have done. (Long list) Sorry to offend all the idiots.

  51. lionsmark09 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:26 PM

    Since when did “faith” mean a certain type of religion. You may be reading into this Mike. We all have faith in something. He just wants players who live life with a purpose. Get off the soapbox.

  52. mz1394 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:30 PM

    a high quality person who has a passion for football and cares about football football football staying out of trouble and football

  53. thebrownswillalwaysloose says: Oct 31, 2012 7:35 PM

    Wow Florio! This is the best article you’ve ever done, hands down! Props to you sir. And to the guy saying this country was founded by Christian leaders? You are wrong sir. Jefferson, Adams and even Lincoln didn’t believe in god (although Lincoln referenced him in his addresses) he believed in providence. You could use some re-education.

  54. thegreatgabbert says: Oct 31, 2012 7:36 PM

    “I can see!”.

  55. drainbameged says: Oct 31, 2012 7:36 PM

    Faith in a violent sport…makes sense to me. How about hireing and firing based on metrics and fact that you can base a knowledgable evauluation?

    This is coming from a fan with 23 years of catholic education…

  56. kdelaney711 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:38 PM

    All this talk about whether the founding fathers were Christians or not is pointless, in my opinion. They all either permitted or participated in slavery and denied women many types of rights, so they obviously shouldn’t be the example we follow when deciding what is right for our country in terms of civil rights.

  57. zn0rseman says: Oct 31, 2012 7:40 PM

    This country was founded by folks who risked their lives in part for the freedom to practice their religious beliefs, including no religious beliefs at all. 
    ———–

    That’s false.

    The freedom of religion was designed to allow people the ability to worship the diety of their choosing without the government dictating which religion they must be. That is all that the seperation of church and state meant. Any historian will confirm that.

    That’s a far cry from today’s poor interpretation of that law which has effectively outlawed any connection between religion and our government which was founded on Christian principles.

  58. ronnieroberts22 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:42 PM

    Creation is a fact.
    Man created god.

  59. jae121704 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:46 PM

    Tim Tebow agrees 100%

  60. 4friedchickensandacoke says: Oct 31, 2012 7:50 PM

    Does anyone remember Tony Dungy’s speech on the field right after the Colts won the Super Bowl? He said the usual things you’d expect, but he ended it with something like, “And most importantly, we did it God’s way.”

    Standard pointing-to-the-sky celebrations aside (and, yes, Tebowing too), that’s the only time I can recall religious discussion on a significant NFL stage. This is obviously a smaller venue, but it’s another religious moment coming from the Colts. Is it coming from higher up?

  61. jakeblues68 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:50 PM

    “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion…”

    –The Treaty of Tripoli, signed by John Adams

  62. karlton3 says: Oct 31, 2012 7:52 PM

    I think Grigson was just looking for a third word that started with ‘f’ and didn’t think ‘flatulance’ would work.

  63. thraiderskin says: Oct 31, 2012 7:52 PM

    As an Athiest, I have no issue with the words he (Grigson) used. This is more of the media making something, out of nothing.
    @moecincydude… Get a grip, religion has done far greater good for humanity than harm. For every atrocity you can possible imagine, there is far more good that has been done. Religion will never be perfect, but it will drive society to be greater than before and when society fails, it will be there to help pick up the pieces. I always hear these angry Athiest get on here and bash religion with all the zeal of a zealot, but what for? What are you angry for? Grow up… just because you don’t believe, doesn’t mean others can’t, openly.

  64. riderspantherssk says: Oct 31, 2012 7:54 PM

    I’m not American, but I seem to know more about the founding of the United States than many of the posters here. Franklin and Jefferson were the most famous of the anti-clerical Christians among the founding fathers. Have you ever looked up in the Capitol Building? Washington is riding on a space ship. These guys were not the fundamentalist Christians some would make them out to be today.

  65. lroc20 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:00 PM

    Im guessing iron maidens 666 the number of the beast is not on the pre game lockeroom playlist. Id base my team on pass catch tackle and run

  66. zlmillerkazz says: Oct 31, 2012 8:07 PM

    I’m an Atheist and I find it very disturbing people will hire/not hire you for your religious/non-religious views…

  67. vargavarga says: Oct 31, 2012 8:09 PM

    Faith doesn’t have to be about God. You could have faith in a whole bunch of things: Yourself, Teammates, that the sun rises. I think you made this about God, not Grigson.

  68. stull60060 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:12 PM

    The Founding Fathers were men of faith. Our laws are based on the Ten Commandments. Read the Federalists Papers. Read the Declaration of Independence. Read the various inscriptions on the buildings and monuments at the Capitol in Washington DC. Read your currency “In God We Trust”. That being said a team can hire whoever they want. I seriously doubt that any GM or owner is not going to sign a good or great player who can help his team win just because of his religious beliefs. The Colts GM is basically saying he wants a team and organization comprised of good, honest, hard working players and people dedicated to winning.

  69. jojopuppyfish says: Oct 31, 2012 8:13 PM

    Bruce Arians said this: “A high quality person who has passion for football and cares about faith, family and football.”
    ——————————
    Should have said
    “A high scoring person, who has passion for football, and cares about football, football, and football.

  70. jimmy53 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:17 PM

    Revisionist history much! Here’s actual words from the founding fathers:

    “The government of the United States is not in any sense founded on the christian religion”- George Washington

    “Christianity is the most perverted system that ever shone on man” – Thomas Jefferson

    “I hold that in this country there must be complete severance of church and state” – Theodore Roosevelt

    “The bible is not my book nor Christianity my profession.” – Abraham Lincoln

    Just because you want to believe it’s true doesn’t make it true. This country was founded on the idea of separation of church and state, and for its own good that should be how it remains.

  71. pongonfl says: Oct 31, 2012 8:19 PM

    If that level of self delusion makes you feel better I supose Varga.

    I believe in Karma, can I play?

  72. duffer58 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:21 PM

    Curfster your comments are laughable. There is NO BIG WHITE GUY IN SKY. There is no mention of Jesus in our Constitution.
    People can believe in God,Gods,or no Deity.

  73. FoozieGrooler says: Oct 31, 2012 8:22 PM

    God didn’t make man.
    Man made God.

  74. pftfannum1 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:23 PM

    I hope it is just Bruce Arians’ point of view, not the NFLs. We already have enough religious wackos out there in the world causing enough tragedies for human beings, the last thing we need is one in the NFL.

  75. fortunefavorsthebolden says: Oct 31, 2012 8:28 PM

    i’m glad someone brought up the treaty of tripoli, unfortunately its a fact which means it doesn’t matter.

  76. metalhead65 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:39 PM

    where does this pc correctness stop? now he can’t say say he wants people that have faith on his team? I am offended that they are offended over what is offensive. left wing liberals are always for free speech as long as that speech follow what they believe in,anything else is offensive and needs to be banned for fear of hurting somebody’s feelings.

  77. billsboy88 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:39 PM

    This country was founded in the pursuit of money, not religion. The Plymouth colony Pilgrims were not the first British colony in America.

    That said, if someone is not hired/fired due to their religious beliefs, then that is the complete opposite of religious freedom. Religious beliefs should have no place in the work world, be it by the employee or the employer.

  78. billsboy88 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:41 PM

    In that case, better bring in Kurt Warner as an advisor…

  79. yajas says: Oct 31, 2012 8:43 PM

    A few years ago Phil Savage said the same thing. But I don’t believe any of them that say it. They’re just trying to present a wholesome, family oriented image to the paying customers. They all still get the best players they can to fit their budget, with a varying tolerance for the legal & PR trouble they might cause. There’s no way they truly care about a player’s professed religion.

  80. chuckleberry1974 says: Oct 31, 2012 8:53 PM

    Curfster could have said it better than he did but he is dead on with what he said. Why you people are thumbing his comment down is only a matter of your extreme ignorance. THis nation is a christian nation and all of its laws are based upon the bible. At least until the ignorance of the modern day took hold on the fools that make up this once great nation

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Actually, our laws are based on English common law for the most part.

  81. yajas says: Oct 31, 2012 8:55 PM

    metalhead65 says: “where does this pc correctness stop? now he can’t say say he wants people that have faith on his team? I am offended that they are offended over what is offensive. left wing liberals are always for free speech as long as that speech follow what they believe in,anything else is offensive and needs to be banned for fear of hurting somebody’s feelings.”

    It’s not about political correctness, it’s about the terms of the CBA and the law.

    And if you want to make it political, some on the far right think that freedom of religion means that because they think they’re in the religious majority, they get to force their views down everyone else’s throat.

  82. waltrd says: Oct 31, 2012 8:59 PM

    The Colts need to select players on the basis of their skills and competencies, and their ability to relate effectively with others. Making a decision on the basis of faith/non-faith is irrelevant.

  83. trevor123698 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:00 PM

    It is truly amazing that you people will thumb down a quote from the 4th and 7th presidents of this country.

  84. touchdownroddywhite says: Oct 31, 2012 9:01 PM

    What if he just meant faith in the literal sense. I’m Buddhist. I have faith that by living my life a certain way I will reach different milestones in life. Is that so different from Christianity? Ignore the nuances and it’s all basically the same. Maybe he just wants somebody who believes, or has faith in, something bigger than themselves? Either way, I support your message, but that’s awfully quick with the finger pointing.

  85. monty9999 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:01 PM

    The Colts won two games last year. Thank God for Andrew Luck!

  86. savvybynature says: Oct 31, 2012 9:02 PM

    Are there labor law precedents that agree that prohibitions against discrimination “because of religion” also apply to people without a religion?

    I’m not being argumentative I really don’t know.

  87. bodybysnake says: Oct 31, 2012 9:09 PM

    “This country was founded by Christians and spreading Christianity As well living by it. Our founding fathers believed that living in faith was the way we would be successful and continue that way. Do not be fooled by what schools have misinformed u about sir. ”

    —————————————————–

    The only people misinformed are you and a few others who posted after you. Put down or better yet throw in the garbage the David Barton mythology on the founding fathers and actually learn your history.

    Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Paine and Franklin were ALL Deists, NOT Evangelical Christians. The principles this country(as well as early Deism) were based on the works of the French Enlightenment, not The Bible. The Separation of Church and State was a REVOLT against the very Theocracy you and others of like mind crave and that which early Americans sought escape from in England.

    Reality, live it, stop fearing it Even though this will go over your head(It always does with Evangelicals) you are welcome for the history lesson anyways. If you doubt anything i’ve said here’s a nifty thought, put down the Church approved revisionism and actually go read what the Founders THEMSELVES actually had to say.

  88. weegiethompson says: Oct 31, 2012 9:10 PM

    I am a non believer, but for the most part atheists are nasty to those who do believe. They take every opportunity to ridicule them.

  89. bodybysnake says: Oct 31, 2012 9:14 PM

    “It is truly amazing that you people will thumb down a quote from the 4th and 7th presidents of this country.”

    —————————————–

    I take it you mean the quotes pro-Theocracy? They are being thumbs downed for good reason, neither man said those things and a quick verification shows that those quotes didn’t come from them. They likely came from the same source as Washington’s “Govern with a bible in hand” quotes: From Professional Revisionist David Barton.

  90. thepopesrustynail says: Oct 31, 2012 9:16 PM

    The utter stupidity of the bible-thumping jet-setters never ceases to amaze me. Glad I’m not a Colts fan…

  91. cobrala2 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:21 PM

    “But why is it relevant to care about faith? Is there any legitimate connection between belief in a Higher Power and the ability to demonstrate the kind of speed and/or power that makes a guy a pro athlete?”

    Does Bruce Arians speak for the entire organization, as Interim Head Coach?

    Yeah, that’s sort of a, like, um, critical point to touch upon.

    Also, does what he say discriminate? I prefer red Skittles. Does that mean I discriminate against green Skittles?

    You guys went from the relief-from-BSPN to cuckoo in a flash this season. IDK if we’re seeing your true colors or if NBC Sports is putting pressure on you or what but you’re all over the place anymore.

  92. jimeejohnson says: Oct 31, 2012 9:23 PM

    curfster33 says:
    “This country was founded by Christians and spreading Christianity As well living by it…I applaud.”

    No problem, provided you don’t expect others to live by your faith. For instance, tonight is Halloween, blasphemy to the Evangelical but fun for everyone else. Don’t tread on me. Trick or treat!

  93. patfic15 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:25 PM

    I believe in God. I believe his son, Jesus died for my sins. I can’t force anyone to believe that. Not the best model myself many days. Don’t let man pollute the goodness that is God. Many remarks are prompted by poor examples we’ve met in life.

  94. fmwarner says: Oct 31, 2012 9:26 PM

    The ignorance in this thread is staggering.

  95. hrjx says: Oct 31, 2012 9:29 PM

    Come on, faith can mean a lot of things. Why glorify it and make it all about religion. I’d consider myself one with great faith but I certainly don’t worship under any god(s).

  96. harrisbd99 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:30 PM

    @trevor123698
    Andrew Jackson was not one of our Founding Fathers. And he was a psychopath. Exact quote from his last day in office, “I have only two regrets: I didn’t shoot Henry Clay and I didn’t hang John C. Calhoun.” Henry Clay was The Speaker of the House at the time and John Calhoun was his vice president. Sounds pretty christian to me.

  97. brasho says: Oct 31, 2012 9:30 PM

    preach!

    104 38 i

    Rate This
    curfster33 says:
    Oct 31, 2012 6:52 PM
    This country was founded by Christians and spreading Christianity As well living by it. Our founding fathers believed that living in faith was the way we would be successful and continue that way. Do not be fooled by what schools have misinformed u about sir. I do agree that you could miss out on some real talent, talent that could become your competition. With that being said I have all the more respect for this guy and wish him the best. I hope in turn that the chemistry comradery and comfort within this unit is all the stronger. I applaud

    ++++++++++++++++++

    Uh, sorry. I am an English teacher that also taught history for six years. The United States was founded by Deists, not Christians. Deists believe that God came, put man on the planet, and said, “Ok boys, you’re on your own.”

    About half of the names that appear on the Declaration of Independence are Deists and most of the most recognizable ones (Ben Franklin being the most prominent).

    As for Florio… be careful what you say, saying you believe in God and working for NBC could be as toxic as saying you don’t believe in God and playing for the Colts.

  98. bolted4life says: Oct 31, 2012 9:31 PM

    We really don’t know whats out there. But if you absolutely have to know, and make something up to make you feel better that’s fine. Just keep it to yourself.

  99. rmc1995 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:34 PM

    The first definition of faith is allegiance to duty. The Marine motto is Semper Fidelis, which means Always Faithful. Let us not get our panties in a bunch.

    To those who believe in the revisionist history that the Founders were not Christian, read up on the other 95% of the men of the continental congress and signers of the declaration. The founders weren’t just the couple of guys who somehow fit your argument they weren’t full blown Christians. The religion clause was was included in most part because Maryland wanted to make sure they could be free to practice Catholicism.

  100. catquick says: Oct 31, 2012 9:38 PM

    They aren’t welcome in heaven either, as I understand.there must be a higher authority, as all men are corrupt. God help us all if atheists triumph. They can never be trusted. They believe they are their own god.

  101. profootballwalk says: Oct 31, 2012 9:41 PM

    So last year, how did those Christians work out for you?

  102. jfinn5 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:42 PM

    If you can play football and make your team better, religion should not matter.

  103. donlogansb says: Oct 31, 2012 9:44 PM

    “Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.”

    from Letter to the Danbury Baptist Association, 1802
    by Thomas Jefferson
    Founding Father, principal Author of the Declaration of Independence, 3rd President of the United States

  104. bleed4philly says: Oct 31, 2012 9:45 PM

    Hallelujah

  105. bmorehomeofthewire says: Oct 31, 2012 9:45 PM

    Amen To this article!!!!!!OOPS.. No religion my bad!!!

  106. robyesno says: Oct 31, 2012 9:46 PM

    Iron sharpens iron. If the GM of the colts is looking to build a team fueled by a similar outlook, philosophy and passion, he has the right to exercise what attitude his team should possess. Because there is no “I” in team, it helps to pull out the same motivation as though one man. If atheists have a right to advance a cause, people of faith have the right to resist. We’re sick and tired of those promoting a Godless society, as though, they have any eternal power to make it so. All men are like grass – some different people – not us, not you – will have this same dispute. And the same God as now, will prevail as then. Get it? God is. God is eternal. And God and only God is in control.

  107. leo133074 says: Oct 31, 2012 9:48 PM

    The most brilliant of our Founders rejected man-made religion and considered themselves Deists. A beliefs in perhaps a Prime Mover or First Cause. Just read their own letters and memoirs. Google is your friend. They pandered to get elected just as they do 235 years later. Jefferson ripped out all mention of jesus’ divinity to make his perfect bible. I rest my case.

  108. queenlivekillers says: Oct 31, 2012 9:50 PM

    Indiana resident here. Indiana is socially just to the right of the town in “Footloose”.

    For the record, the Founding Fathers may have been Christian, but they founded a nation based as much on freedom FROM religion as freedom OF religion. Read your history.

  109. robyesno says: Oct 31, 2012 9:52 PM

    And FYI. Abraham Lincoln’s faith in God, decidedly changed to be deeply moved by the power of God and the words of the Bible. Like all who come to God, by profound things of life we discover who He is and who we truly are.

  110. conormacleod says: Oct 31, 2012 10:07 PM

    God is a delusion. I’m supposed to believe there’s an all powerful being that created man instead of believing that life on Earth came about from evolution over millions of years? Fine. Then tell me, what even more powerful being created your God? Evolution is harder to believe than a virgin mother, a man dying and then rising from the dead, thinking a being can hear all thoughts and prayers by every person simultaneously, Jesus’ virgin mother never died but went to heaven? No thanks. I’ll take good old Science (Atheism) any day of the week, and twice on Sunday’s, for I worship at the altar of the NFL!!

  111. rj88888 says: Oct 31, 2012 10:08 PM

    Vargavarga got it right. Faith is not only used to express a belief in religion.

  112. maiphatdong says: Oct 31, 2012 10:09 PM

    “Reality is what it is, not what you want it to be.” – Frank Zappa

    “Faith: not wanting to know what is true.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

    “Religions are all alike – founded upon fables and mythologies.” -Thomas Jefferson

    “Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than going to the garage makes you a car.” – Laurence J. Peter

    “We must respect the other fellow’s religion, but only in the same sense to the extent that we respect his theory that his wife is beautiful and his children smart.” – H.L. Mencken

    “The invisible and the non-existent look very much alike.” –Huang Po

    “Lighthouses are more helpful then churches.” — Benjamin Franklin

  113. edjy71 says: Oct 31, 2012 10:12 PM

    For the record, I think this guy is wrong. He shouldn’t let his personal beliefs prejudice who’s on his football team, that’s wrong and actually contrary to his faith.

    But as a person of faith I always hate when these stories come up because it opens the door for people to mock, taunt and ridicule people of faith.

    This site is supposed to be about football!

  114. caddyduval says: Oct 31, 2012 10:13 PM

    History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance of which their civil as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes.

    -Thomas Jefferson to Alexander von Humboldt, Dec. 6, 1813.

    The whole history of these books [the Gospels] is so defective and doubtful that it seems vain to attempt minute enquiry into it: and such tricks have been played with their text, and with the texts of other books relating to them, that we have a right, from that cause, to entertain much doubt what parts of them are genuine. In the New Testament there is internal evidence that parts of it have proceeded from an extraordinary man; and that other parts are of the fabric of very inferior minds. It is as easy to separate those parts, as to pick out diamonds from dunghills.

    -Thomas Jefferson, letter to John Adams, January 24, 1814

    Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law.

    -Thomas Jefferson, letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814

    In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own.

    -Thomas Jefferson, letter to Horatio G. Spafford, March 17, 1814

    Ridicule is the only weapon which can be used against unintelligible propositions. Ideas must be distinct before reason can act upon them; and no man ever had a distinct idea of the trinity. It is the mere Abracadabra of the mountebanks calling themselves the priests of Jesus.”

    -Thomas Jefferson, letter to Francis Adrian Van der Kemp, 30 July, 1816

    And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors.

    -Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823

    and of course, the coup de grace

    Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus *********building a wall of separation between church and State.**********

    -Thomas Jefferson, letter to Danbury Baptist Association, CT., Jan. 1, 1802

  115. dallascowboysdishingthereal says: Oct 31, 2012 10:19 PM

    An atheiest can’t throw a “hail mary”? Right?

  116. urfinished says: Oct 31, 2012 10:20 PM

    The reaction here is wild. Talk about blowing up a quote.
    If atheists were really offended by that, they need help…religious or otherwise.

  117. johngaltwho says: Oct 31, 2012 10:22 PM

    This article seems like a lazy opportunity to stir up controversy rather than bring some journalistic insight to coverage of the NFL. Well, it looks like we’re all taking the bait.

    By the way, there is no god – get over it.

  118. udjets says: Oct 31, 2012 10:27 PM

    Full excerpt from the Treaty of Tripoli (below), which was one of the only times that a law has passed unanimously through the Senate. Also, you may want to look up the Jefferson Bible. He believed the rules were sound, but the supernatural and the “miracles” were impossible to believe so he cut them out, which included all references to a god or Jesus for that matter. Realistically, most of the founders were deists, which meant they believed that there is a higher power, just not the one in the black book. Facts are facts, you can’t just ignore them.

    “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen [Muslims],—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan [Muslim] nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries”

    Mr. Florio, I applaud your open mindedness and your ability to articulately give your opinion without passing judgment on a group with a differing viewpoint. Your stance is very rare and greatly appreciated.

  119. skolpackers says: Oct 31, 2012 10:27 PM

    as a Christian, attending a christian university, this country was NOT founded on christianity. it was all about economics. and we have a great track record of killing off indians, enslaving blacks, and all the other BS.
    anyways, i do like that G.M. Ryan Grigson values men of faith, but exactly you can’t discriminate against someone for not being a “believer”. after all Jesus would been drawn to those in society we look down, and placed them on his team to take the field..

  120. husky2score says: Oct 31, 2012 10:29 PM

    This article has been approved by Tim Tebow.

  121. johngaltwho says: Oct 31, 2012 10:29 PM

    trevor123698 says:
    Oct 31, 2012 9:00 PM
    “It is truly amazing that you people will thumb down a quote from the 4th and 7th presidents of this country.”

    Why do you find that amazing. Since when did every utterance from a US president become insightful and eloquent ….

    Case in point – our 43rd US President said: “Too many OB-GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country”
    and then he said: “There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on –shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again”

    Perhaps now you won’t consider every word from a US President to be brilliant.

  122. phillyphever says: Oct 31, 2012 10:31 PM

    IDK which thread is more toxic: this one or the Warren Moon one?

  123. jcthree0303 says: Oct 31, 2012 10:33 PM

    I am a devout Atheist and yeah I don’t care. He has the right to feel however he feels but like Mike Florio says don’t be stupid and say it out loud unless you want to open yourself up to future litigation. Oh and Monty don’t thank god. Thank his parents. LOL.

  124. nesuperfan says: Oct 31, 2012 10:38 PM

    While it is definitely true that it would be hard to prove in court, there is something the trumps even Article 49 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement: It is against U.S. federal law for employers to discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

    They chose to reiterate those in Article 49, but the only ones that were not already protected by U.S. law were “sexual orientation, or activity or lack of activity on behalf of the NFLPA”.

  125. mrcogburn says: Oct 31, 2012 10:39 PM

    Lord (can I say that?), talk about “straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel,” Mike. The First Amendment also guarantees freedom of speech. Maybe the Thought Police should re-read it with their thinking caps on and stop trying to put the chill on that liberty.

    If it will make you feel any better, I expect the Dolphins will beat the devil out of the Colts on the Lord’s Day. That should make all of us happy.

  126. packhawk04 says: Oct 31, 2012 10:41 PM

    Funny… all the quotes from george washington, benjamin franklin, thomas jefferson, john adams, and patrick henry about the importance of seperation of church and state were an effort to keep religion out of law and inform people that we are not a nation of one religion, but of many. Silly me.

  127. lovetron says: Oct 31, 2012 10:43 PM

    Guess I missed the part where it says faith IN GOD. Faith is exemplified in many ways. Not all of them have to do with God and religion. Ever sit in a chair? You’re demonstrating faith that the legs won’t collapse beneath you. Stop the dumb editorializing.

  128. ihaterogergoodell says: Oct 31, 2012 10:47 PM

    Yawn. See what you started, Mr. Florio? :)

    Everyone has to justify their own beliefs and values, by jumping on those who disagree!

  129. protagoras111 says: Oct 31, 2012 10:47 PM

    Indy proving once again that it’s a backwards NFL franchise that was propped up by one particular QB for the last decade or so. Need more proof that it’s a screwy organization? Just look at Irsay’s twitter account.

  130. jcd213 says: Oct 31, 2012 10:49 PM

    It’s Tannehill vs. Luck this week. Two under rated teams. Can’t wait for this game. Both teams have exceeded expectations.

  131. cmgww says: Oct 31, 2012 10:57 PM

    How many of you actually read the article? From the comments, not many. He made a comment using a cliche that’s been around football since the Lombardi days….Never talk politics or religion on a sports site (or at a party)…just look at all the responses to this article and arguments from this. All b/c Arians said he wanted men of character and said the old “faith, family, football” line…hell my HS coach said that to us! Come on, folks, READ FURTHER before posting! Enough with the religion and politics! CONTEXT!

  132. udjets says: Oct 31, 2012 11:02 PM

    @stull60060

    “In God we trust” was added in 1956, this is a failure on your part to recognize history unless you believe the founders lived to be 200 years old. “E pluribus unum” (Out of many, one) was the original seal.

    Federalist papers. “Religion & Govt. will both exist in greater purity, the less they are mixed together. ” – James Madison (One of the authors of the document) While he believed in god, he was but one of many. He also didn’t think imposing it on others was a wise choice.

    Laws based on the bible… These “laws” existed long before biblical times. Even long lost tribes in the Amazon follow similar rules, it’s called being a good human being. Not everyone needs to be scared into doing what’s right by the threat of damnation.

    Monuments. Again, created by men long after the founders or the settlers for that matter and had no bearing on the founding of this country. If anything, those of religious zeal should be appalled by the monuments as they could be construed as false idols.

  133. purplemary54 says: Oct 31, 2012 11:02 PM

    It’s not illegal to hire someone because of their religious beliefs. It is illegal to fire someone because of their beliefs or lack thereof. Period. Any discussion of what people actually believe is irrelevant.

    And because the founding fathers came from places where the church was allowed to make or influence civil law and where people were persecuted for beliefs that were outside the majority, they wrote the separation of church and state into the Constitution. That way, the state can’t influence how you believe, and how you believe can’t influence the state. Period.

  134. thermalito says: Oct 31, 2012 11:03 PM

    Good grief the religious creeps are back harassing non-believers again. I guess some things never go out of style. Christian fascists poisoning society through endless wars, suppression and genocide wasn’t enough so now they have to vilify anyone who doesn’t share their goofy Bronze Age religious superstitions.

  135. nbaraie says: Oct 31, 2012 11:14 PM

    There is no god.

    Sincerely,
    Buffalo

  136. nopuntintended says: Oct 31, 2012 11:18 PM

    Bottom line, two things should matter to employment on a football team:

    #1: Being hard-working, dedicated, and good at football.
    #2: Being a good person.

    #1 does not have to do with faith. You can and are free to believe you ability came from any source you please. If you believe in God, cool. If you do not, cool .

    #2 does not have to do with faith. There are plenty of good people who are not Christians. There are atheists who are quite giving, caring, respectful, law-abiding citizens. There are Christians that break the law, are not good people in most senses of the word.

    One’s faith in a higher power, regardless of which higher power(s), or one’s lack of faith in a higher power should play no relevance whatsoever in decisions made to football operations.

    It should not matter what the country was founded on. It should not matter if you pray to a deity, or if you do, which you pray to. In the same way it should not matter what color your skins is, or what your sexual orientation is.

    All that should matter is that you’re hard working and dedicated to football, and a good person.

  137. bigjimatch says: Oct 31, 2012 11:36 PM

    atheist can’t have any faith in anything? I did not realize that.

  138. dickmac says: Oct 31, 2012 11:37 PM

    A lot of the posters cite the US as being a “Christian” nation, citing references to “God”. Christians are followers of Jesus Christ, who is referred to as the son of God. An outsider would say that God and Jesus Christ are two separate entities. Some would cite the Trinity – God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. One can believe in God without being a “Christian”.

  139. denverscott says: Oct 31, 2012 11:39 PM

    curfster33 says: Oct 31, 2012 6:52 PM

    This country was founded by Christians and spreading Christianity
    ——————————————————
    Typical Bible thumping booby brained comment. You are wrong on both points. We’ll let it slide though as in all likelyhood you were most likely home schooled and wracked by the confusing thoughts encountered when you developed a crush on your teacher.

  140. SparkyGump says: Oct 31, 2012 11:41 PM

    Can we just keep it about football? The belief in some invisible, imaginary sky god (or ancient astronaut) is irrelevant to how you play the game. You play to win the game, what you pray to should be separate. Hello?!

  141. denverscott says: Oct 31, 2012 11:42 PM

    And for the record, I am a card carrying member of the Blue Oyster Cult. Hail to the Mollusks!

  142. briang123 says: Oct 31, 2012 11:42 PM

    To those that believe, no explanation is necessary. To those that don’t, no explanation is possible. In my experience, the most intolerant people are around are atheists. (See for example how the Freedom from Religion Foundation dedicates itself to destroying wildly successful social programs simply because they are faith-based). There is no way a team would not sign or keep a player who is an atheist. This headline is an embarrassment to this website and an unnecessary story out of nothing. I guess you were missing the Tebow-bashing days.

  143. chemfootball says: Oct 31, 2012 11:44 PM

    Mr. Florio, I have been a fan of your website for years, although I often disagree with you. After reading this post I hold you in high regard. I completely agree with you. Discrimination based on religious beliefs or lack thereof is just as much a disgrace as discrimination based on race or anything else.

  144. briang123 says: Oct 31, 2012 11:44 PM

    You know, come to think of it, Colts players might start joining with their teammates and opponents after games in prayer circles and start thanking God above all else in post game interviews. I don’t know how people will be to handle football players openly expressing their religious beliefs.

  145. culturalelitist says: Oct 31, 2012 11:48 PM

    Just as my new favorite player Chris Kluwe recently weighed in regarding a future openly gay NFL player, I look forward to an out-of-the-closet atheist playing pro football. Something tells me he will be more ostracized (by teammates, coaches, administrators, and especially fans) than the gay guy.

    There have been a few big name atheist players (the Chargers’ Dan Fouts, the Vikings’ Robert Smith) but none who went public during their careers.

    Ultimately, the NFL is so conservative, it’s a miracle they’ve ever moved beyond running the ball on every down.

  146. footballaficionado says: Oct 31, 2012 11:48 PM

    Even as a devote Catholic I am totally in agreement with Mike, at least in this country we have or should have the freedom to believe or not. You cannot force faith upon anyone and that is not the way it was intended. All I want from a professional football player is talent and passion for the sport all else is separate and up to the individual.

  147. lostsok says: Nov 1, 2012 12:04 AM

    I thought this country was formed by Tim Tebow?

  148. jerrysshadescleaner says: Nov 1, 2012 12:06 AM

    athiest just need to go away! Let me guess you are smarter and tougher cause yall dont belive in God. Just a bunch of losers who think to highly of themselves!

  149. taintedsaints2009 says: Nov 1, 2012 12:16 AM

    I’m sure Chris kluwe will chime in any minute.

  150. taintedsaints2009 says: Nov 1, 2012 12:27 AM

    Hahaha, bull ass, that’s great

  151. thermalito says: Nov 1, 2012 12:30 AM

    Is there anything more nauseating than the loudmouth religious kook/professional athlete? Their “faith” is nothing more than an extension of their own narcissism that makes them think they are chosen ones. Apparently, god cares more about answering the prayers of millionaire professional athletes then he does helping those in dire need in places like Haiti, Africa, Myanmar, North Korea and the Philippines. Who would have known god was such a sports fan?

  152. ddogdaddy says: Nov 1, 2012 12:43 AM

    @cmgww
    You sir or madam get the prize for tonight for having the most thought out statement concerning the C.F. that Florio started. People should be able to come to a football site to talk about football. Listening to these comments makes me ill. Just like every arguement, there are at least 2 sides. In this case more then that. You can tell there are well educated people with unbridaled passion either for or against God and/or religion. I think they should have a forum to discuss this from now until one side or the others head explodes if they choose to. But it has no place on PFT? To prove my point I will make no declaration other then to say I have complete faith the COLTS will whip some Phish butt this Sunday. Florio, you should apologize to your readers for throwing fuel on this fire.

  153. nflwatcher says: Nov 1, 2012 1:27 AM

    So if tomorrow Indy QB Andrew luck said in a press conference “There is no God”would he be traded by tomorrows deadline?

  154. superputman says: Nov 1, 2012 1:33 AM

    “No man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever.” – Thomas Jefferson -Virginia Act for Religious Freedom. Jefferson also constructed his own version of the Bible – he removed all instances in the New Testament of the virgin birth, miracles and even the parts claiming Jesus’ divinity. Look it up. It’s called “The Jefferson Bible”

    Found in Poor Richard’s Almanac by Ben Franklin “Lighthouses are more helpful than churches.”, “The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason.”

    “Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half of the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we call it the word of a demon than the word of God. It is a history of wickedness that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind.” – Tomas Paine – Age of Reason

    “Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause. Of all the animosities which have existed among mankind, those which are caused by the difference of sentiments in religion appear to be the most inveterate and distressing, and ought most to be depreciated. I was in hopes that the enlightened and liberal policy, which has marked the present age, would at least have reconciled Christians of every denomination so far that we should never again see the religious disputes carried to such a pitch as to endanger the peace of society.”
    George Washington – letter to Edward Newenham, 1792

    And, most importantly.. the ‘Father’ of our Constitution James Madison, summarizes the 1st amendment.. “Congress should not establish a religion and enforce the legal observation of it by law, nor compel men to worship God in any manner contary to their conscience, or that one sect might obtain a pre-eminence, or two combined together, and establish a religion to which they would compel others to conform” (Annals of Congress, Sat Aug 15th, 1789 pages 730 – 731).

  155. pakrguru says: Nov 1, 2012 2:02 AM

    donlogansb says:Oct 31, 2012 9:44 PM

    “Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between Man & his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legitimate powers of government reach actions only, & not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.”

    from Letter to the Danbury Baptist Association, 1802
    by Thomas Jefferson
    Founding Father, principal Author of the Declaration of Independence, 3rd President of the United States

    So…you bold ” thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.”

    First of all, that is NOT in the Constitution.

    Second of all, you gloss over another important line of that quote ” that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,”

    Face it….if I’m religious (and I’m not)….this means I also have the right to establish or invoke the free exercise of my religion, without interference from any governing body of this country. For me, that means that if I am religious (and…again…I’m not)…I have the ability to be FREE to espouse my beliefs. Not upon anyone, but at the very minimum, upon myself. PC’ers…errrrr….liberals….errrrr…progressives….errrrrrr…democraps….errrrrr……whatever have interpreted the hell (pun intended) out of the “seperation of church and state” argument. Face it…there is NO such argument made in the Constitution. If the Colts want to say they want men of faith, to mean whatever they want, religious or not…it is established that it is their FREE right to do so, without being encumbered by governance. Many of you state the Founding Fathers were Deists. So be it (although not entirely true)…..if only you had the knowledge that Deists DO believe in a God (ummmm…Deism…coming from the Latin word, deus, means….God), they define the very fact the world exists as proof. They merely were upset of the corruption of power held by those in places of prominence in modern religions of their time.

    So…for Christ’s sake (more pun intended)…..let it go.

  156. eightandeightlions says: Nov 1, 2012 2:14 AM

    If the Colts win the Superbowl this year I will become a full-fledged Christian zealot.

    If not I will remain rational.

    deal?

  157. eightandeightlions says: Nov 1, 2012 2:21 AM

    “Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blind-folded fear.”
    Thomas Jefferson
    Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/t/thomasjeff101717.html#XgTAQRA2fZY0gUdt.99

    “If I paid you to think, you could cash your check at the penny arcade.”
    George Jefferson c. 1976 (still not buried)

  158. rjkilla says: Nov 1, 2012 2:55 AM

    it’s disgusting that in this enlightened educated age some people are still ignorant enough to try and cram their beliefs down everyone else throat. time to evolve people

  159. onlypeoplewhostarveforattentionbegforlikes says: Nov 1, 2012 3:48 AM

    Mike Florio knew when he saw this little soundbite from Arians he could turn this into a religious debate, which would trigger many comments. Lo and behold, he was right.
    I believe in God and am a practicing Christian. Some people aren’t. Oh well

  160. gavriloprincip33 says: Nov 1, 2012 4:42 AM

    Asalaam alaikum!

    Muslims in the house…

    Your god is wrong!

  161. contraisloosebuthole says: Nov 1, 2012 4:47 AM

    So the colts believe in fairy-tails, magic, and superheros? Got it. That is the mind of a seven year old.

  162. tiggerblood says: Nov 1, 2012 6:03 AM

    Exactly why we should not elect a President that is a member of a fanatical religion.

  163. iluvbears says: Nov 1, 2012 6:04 AM

    Who else is tired of preachy religious types sticking their theism where it doesn’t belong? To each their own as long as you keep your own to your self.

  164. bobbyhoying says: Nov 1, 2012 7:17 AM

    The very fact that Christians who have posted here are being generally mocked demonstrates the complete moral decay of the country. Enjoy defending your position on the day you stand before the Creator. There is no defense for anyone but Christ.

  165. jr4real says: Nov 1, 2012 7:30 AM

    1. This country was founded because of MONEY. The Boston Tea Party. Ever heard of it? Taxation without Representation? Religious freedom was a goal but the tax is what broke the camel’s back.

    2. Very surprised it took Arians so long to put his footbi his mouth. While he is proving to be more competent than i expected (being a steeler fan) he is a crazy s o b.

  166. richwizl says: Nov 1, 2012 7:44 AM

    The spread of atheism is one of the signs of the Last Days; bring it on and let the new system begin soon.

  167. lollygagger8 says: Nov 1, 2012 8:12 AM

    One Nation….under God.

  168. bunjy96 says: Nov 1, 2012 8:21 AM

    Historian Anson Phelps Stokes’ three volume account of Church and State in the United States argued that the Treaty of Tripoli is the “only statement of any importance which we have found in the official documents of the United States which seems to deny specifically that the government was founded on the Christian religion.” He also noted that “those who wished to deny that the United States as a government has any special regard for the Christian religion…[have ] almost invariably failed to call attention to the fact that the treaty was superseded, less than a decade later, by another ‘Treaty of Peace and Amity,’ signed in Tripoli June 4, 1805, in which the clause in question…is omitted.”[

  169. dolfanreal says: Nov 1, 2012 8:36 AM

    I have faith that some people hate faith. I would also like to point out that the very people who complain about those with religion shoving faith down their throat, ARE shoving thier non faith down the people with faiths throat. See how that works? YOu have become what you hate.

  170. shackdelrio says: Nov 1, 2012 8:37 AM

    An openly gay player would be much more accepted in an NFL locker room than a player that is openly atheist.

  171. johnnyquick says: Nov 1, 2012 8:51 AM

    The first paragraph of the US Declaration of Independence states “and of Nature’s God entitle them, ” and the second paragraph states ” that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.”

    Was the God referred to Alah, Bramah, Jupiter, Budha? of course not. It was the Christian God.

    Some justify their pathological hatred towards Christianity by relating the crimes committed by it. Yet they conveniently omit that their darling atheists Comrades Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Castro, Pol Pot, Kim Il Sung, Gomulka, et al murdered close to 150 million people.

    As far as Lincoln’s repudiation of the bible, it is a well known fact that he was gay and could not reconcile his sordid desires with the word of God.

  172. Stupid Lions Fan says: Nov 1, 2012 8:59 AM

    Very good article Florio.

  173. jahmic says: Nov 1, 2012 9:09 AM

    I guess Indy is on the northern edge of the bible belt.

    Grigson: Show us your ready to back up your faith:

    Trade Luck for Tebow!

  174. 6stn says: Nov 1, 2012 9:27 AM

    I always wanted to have Faith. Faith Daniels. That was one hot News Anchor. Where has Faith gone?

  175. icecubeusedtobeangry says: Nov 1, 2012 9:59 AM

    gavriloprincip33 says:
    Nov 1, 2012 4:42 AM
    Asalaam alaikum!

    Muslims in the house…

    Your god is wrong!
    ————————————————–
    Yeah well I get to eat bacon…

  176. tiggerblood says: Nov 1, 2012 11:32 AM

    And enjoy alcohol…. Beer and Ribs oh yeah!

  177. S.Nevada says: Nov 1, 2012 11:43 AM

    I’m not sure how this is news. If we were talking about another city then I understand. But Indy is really a fairly intolerant city so it makes sense the team would mirror that.

  178. cow395 says: Nov 1, 2012 1:31 PM

    i don’t believe in a higher power…does that make me an athiest?

  179. CKL says: Nov 1, 2012 3:50 PM

    billsboy88 says:
    Oct 31, 2012 8:39 PM

    That said, if someone is not hired/fired due to their religious beliefs, then that is the complete opposite of religious freedom. Religious beliefs should have no place in the work world, be it by the employee or the employer.
    ___________________________________
    Couldn’t agree more. Problem is PC nation doesn’t like to offend anyone because everyone is a special snowflake (which is NOT the same thing as people all having the same rights) so there are EEOC laws saying employers must, if “no undue hardship is created” (and believe me the amount of work an employer has to do to show this is not small)allow people to circumvent their policies including work schedule accommodations BECAUSE they have certain religious beliefs. Can’t have it both ways IMO.

  180. wicky888 says: Nov 1, 2012 3:53 PM

    When I’m watching TV and my daughter walks in and chooses to ask …. “Who are all those people on the ground covered in red?” I told her they were looking for god, but found religion instead

    De La Soul

  181. funtime42 says: Nov 1, 2012 4:09 PM

    1. Andrew Jackson was NOT a Founding Father (and as much as I admire his strength of character, he was not a shining example of christian manhood, either).

    2. Read anything by Roger Williams, founder or Rhode Island

    3. Read anything by George Washington

    Belief in God, god, higher power, TPTB, the Mother Goddess, the innate goodness of mankind, or flying spaghetti will not endow anyone with a laser rocket arm or 4.2 speed, and if you think all of the above have time to listen to your pleas for a kick to go wide right, then I think your priorities (and theirs) are seriously misplaced.

    Be tolerant with each other, be kind to yourself, enjoy the game, and please stop trying to save my soul.

  182. thebandit27 says: Nov 1, 2012 4:21 PM

    Good grief, what Grigson said is totally fine. He wants players to whom football, family, and faith are important. It only becomes discrimination when he cuts a player who is single or doesn’t follow a doctrine of faith, and does so for that exact reason.

    It’s perfectly fine for him to draft a player who is more educated, as long as he feels like it will help the team. Is that discrimination against those that attended state colleges versus Ivy League Schools? No.

    Stop making moutains out of molehills.

    Also…

    I’ve never understood how atheists can be offended by a God that they don’t even believe in.

    Also, has anyone else noticed that it seems to be predominantly the non-believers that become enraged about the topic? I’ve always wondered why that is…

  183. thebandit27 says: Nov 1, 2012 4:23 PM

    funtime42 says:
    Nov 1, 2012 4:09 PM
    1. Andrew Jackson was NOT a Founding Father (and as much as I admire his strength of character, he was not a shining example of christian manhood, either).

    2. Read anything by Roger Williams, founder or Rhode Island

    3. Read anything by George Washington

    Belief in God, god, higher power, TPTB, the Mother Goddess, the innate goodness of mankind, or flying spaghetti will not endow anyone with a laser rocket arm or 4.2 speed, and if you think all of the above have time to listen to your pleas for a kick to go wide right, then I think your priorities (and theirs) are seriously misplaced.

    Be tolerant with each other, be kind to yourself, enjoy the game, and please stop trying to save my soul.

    ——————–

    Nobody tried to “save your soul”…a guy answered a question, and Mike Florio made an issue out of an otherwise perfectly innocuous answer.

  184. hikohadon says: Nov 1, 2012 11:41 PM

    As an atheist, I think all y’all are blowing this out of proportion.

    “Faith” could mean a lot of things. I have faith in my family and friends. It doesn’t have to mean belief in some random deity.

    And I’m pretty sure the Colts would’ve drafted Andrew Luck even if he told them he worshiped tree spirits or Jobu.

  185. comeonnowguys says: Nov 2, 2012 2:02 PM

    It’s really tough to be a non-annoying person of faith in a world of annoying people of faith.

    Then again, I just made myself annoying by even saying that, so, I withdraw the statement, your honor.

  186. tdk24 says: Nov 2, 2012 2:07 PM

    “The Bible is the Book upon which this Republic rests.” Andrew Jackson, Seventh President of the United States

    And that’s why we have admendments, to go back and fix past mistakes. Just because a forefather said or did something, doesn’t make it right in today’s world.

  187. wallacejay says: Nov 2, 2012 4:40 PM

    trevor123698 says: Oct 31, 2012 6:56 PM

    “The Bible is the Book upon which this Republic rests.” Andrew Jackson, Seventh President of the United States
    ———————————————————-
    Are you sure that wasn’t Samuel Jackson in “Pulp Fiction”?

  188. Deb says: Nov 2, 2012 6:39 PM

    tdk24 says:

    “The Bible is the Book upon which this Republic rests.” Andrew Jackson, Seventh President of the United States

    And that’s why we have admendments, to go back and fix past mistakes. Just because a forefather said or did something, doesn’t make it right in today’s world.
    ————————————————–

    More accurately, Andrew Jackson was not a founding father. He had no part in the creation of the Republic, no role in the writing of the Constitution. His assertion that the Republic rests upon the Bible is his personal opinion and no more valid than any non-binding opinion. His belief is not found in the Constitution and is not–nor ever has been–the law of this land.

    As a Christian, I’ve chosen to make the Bible the centerpiece of my life. But I was free to make that choice because I live in a country that prohibits the goverment from dictating any religious doctrine, including Christianity. This is not a Christian nation and never has been. It is a nation where all are free to worship as they please … or not to worship at all.

  189. rushmatic says: Nov 2, 2012 8:09 PM

    Most of the founding fathers were Deists. I’m not sure why so many people like to claim that America is a Christian nation. To say that the population is such wouldn’t be more accurate.

    “Under God” wasn’t added to the Pledge until 1954.

    People will believe what they want to believe.

  190. savannahrose44 says: Nov 4, 2012 10:05 AM

    @ stull60060 says:

    The phrase “In God We Trust” was officially added to US currency in 1956. While it did appear randomly on some coins prior to that it did not appear on paper currency, and was not seen on coins prior to 1864. It was adopted to replace the motto “E pluribus unum” literally translated “out of many, one”, or “One from many, which was the motto on the official seal of the United States created in 1782.

  191. realitypolice says: Nov 4, 2012 5:00 PM

    The founding fathers were primarily Deists who rejected organized religion. True damn fact.

  192. ballreaper says: Nov 4, 2012 6:47 PM

    It always lends itself to be CREEPY when you have someone like a Bruce Arians publicly preaching (pon intended) this type of stuff in a work environment, It just makes you want to find the nearest exit.

  193. tlmoon2112 says: Nov 5, 2012 9:23 AM

    “Folks who choose not to believe should never be disadvantaged.”

    Folks who DO believe should not be disadvantaged either, which is what you and athiests are advocating. They have the right to hire and fire whomever they pleased based on whatever job requirements they want or need. That’s how free market enterprise works. If youre an athiest and dont want to work for someone of faith, go find an athiest job and vice versa. Its not a sweatshop, nobody is forcing anyone to work somewhere against their will.

  194. melissasmith1596 says: Nov 5, 2012 12:31 PM

    The term “faith” doesn’t have to mean a certain religion. You can have faith in anything. I think what he meant was that he looked for people with good moral character. He was with us in Pittsburgh for a long time, and that’s what the Rooneys look for. So I get what he’s talking about. No troublemakers. I don’t think the man will choose his players based on religious orientation. You’re just blowing the whole thing out of proportion. Political correctness gets annoying sometimes…

    btw, I have no religious orientation and am not offended in the least by Bruce’s statement.

  195. purplengold says: Nov 5, 2012 4:59 PM

    tlmoon2112 says:
    Nov 5, 2012 9:23 AM

    “Folks who DO believe should not be disadvantaged either, which is what you and athiests are advocating.”
    ___________________________________
    I haven’t seen that line of thought in any of these posts. Stopping people from persecuting others is not persecution. You seem to have that complex.

  196. peoplesrepublic0fdabayarea says: Nov 5, 2012 6:03 PM

    All of you inferior teams and fans should embrace science and atheism.

    Sincerely,

    The People’s Republic of Northern California & the San Francisco 49ers

  197. deeb007 says: Nov 6, 2012 1:33 AM

    1. The group of men that argued this nation into existence were just that: men. Men that were fallible, products of their time and education. Sure, we idolize them because for the most part they did a bang-up job, but they were people that lived and died over 200 years ago. The world has changed a bit since then.

    2. I fear that there will never be a day on this planet where people DON’T get up-in-arms (literally or metaphorically) over religion. It is quite unfortunate that people allow their philosophies to prejudice their actions and words.

    3. Freedom FROM religion is just as important as freedom OF religion. What we call religious persecution applies in both directions: people persecute people for being too religious, not religious enough, not the right kind of religious, or not religious at all. Not cool.

    4. I walked out of a Southern Baptist sermon at the age of 4, and have never felt bad about it. Through my formative years I learned as much as I could about ALL faith traditions, modern and historical. There’s good and bad in all of them. I don’t have to believe in Transubstantiation to abide by the Golden Rule, and I don’t have to fear the wrath of the Almighty to practice decency, charity, humility, et cetera.

    5. Being religious does not make a person a good person. Having respect for one another, having an open heart and an open mind does.

    6. Perhaps sharing a common belief system can facilitate the kind of unit cohesion that is necessary to overcome the challenges that a team, an army, a nation will face, but it shouldn’t be a prerequisite. The clique-ish nature that many people display, whether they rally behind a flag, a team, or a God, is very troubling.

    7. Belief and faith are similar, but not identical. I have faith in mankind, and I believe that by doing good in the world I can maybe leave it better than I found it. But my proselytizing goes no further than the mirror.

  198. sufferingphilsfan says: Nov 6, 2012 8:11 AM

    Their team…their decision. Stay the eff out of it, dopey.

  199. tigerwoodsballs says: Nov 6, 2012 9:38 AM

    I don’t believe in Atheists.

    Also, if you don’t think there is freedom from religion, then I advise you to go move to Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Iran and please by all means, tell everyone your infidel beliefs. Please, go public with that, and let us see what NO freedom from religion really looks like.

  200. bongloader says: Nov 6, 2012 10:24 AM

    Ray Lewis has strong faith, and he was present at a double murder.

  201. jcthree0303 says: Nov 6, 2012 10:54 AM

    tigerwoodsballs says:
    Nov 6, 2012 9:38 AM
    I don’t believe in Atheists.

    Also, if you don’t think there is freedom from religion, then I advise you to go move to Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Iran and please by all means, tell everyone your infidel beliefs. Please, go public with that, and let us see what NO freedom from religion really looks like.

    WHAT? That was the most incoherent statement anyone on here has said. Who’s telling you to believe in atheists. You can believe in anything you like. If you want to believe in the easter bunny, Santa Claus, tooth fairy, god, etc that’s your business. I could care less. All the same to me but while as an young teen when most people realize there isn’t a santa claus and the tooth fairy those same people for some reason get hysterical when someone has a disenting opinion of some mythical deity that runs the universe that we can’t see, hear, touch, smell, or in the theories of St. Thomas Aquinas we as humans don’t have the ability to think about. The great thing about living in this country is that we can all believe in what we want. Luckily, we can also walk away or ignore dissenting opinions if you chose to. I love America what a country.

  202. bikelikemike says: Nov 10, 2012 4:45 PM

    Good Lord! I could go all wack-nut on WAY over 1/2 the posts written by people who think they know it all, but don’t have a clue. That’s the problem with most people. We’re smarter than the average bear. What I don’t like is that SO many of those who ‘THINK’ they’re more intellectually evolved are so condescending toward those who don’t think just like them. Even YOU, brilliant as you say you are, don’t know what you don’t know- (and cannot know). I come from a Christian family, and Sunday school was part of the equation. My big brother said he didn’t want to go anymore when I was in 6th grade, and of course; I wanted me some o’ that too! I’d challenged my folks a year or two beforehand; why were we learning two different ‘theories’ in each school. But they didn’t answer. Dad wasn’t so religious, mom was. He was the master of the household, AND he had a genius IQ. So his answer would be relished. I figure he wanted bro and I to THINK/ REASON; as with math- do the exercise that would expand our minds and enable us to appreciate our findings. I used to hate him for that! If he was so smart, why not help us get a leg up/ head-start? Anyway.. I needed concrete evidence to cave to a speculation. I’d realized at a young age that people in supposedly authoritative positions told us all kinds of CRAP. So naturally I was a skeptic, an agnostic. I’d LOVE to believe- because it would lift us out of the turmoil of our difficult human conditions. But is that what drove our ancestors to CREATE these ‘fantasies’?? Since my youth I’ve had one eyebrow raised. I was sure (well.. not necessarily) when I was a teen that it was a crutch. I’m in my 50s; still can’t say. I think dad accepted Christ on his deathbed *for mom*. But being honest and respectful of my fellow man, I never denigrate anyone for their beliefs. I don’t think the apple fell far from the tree (unless mom fooled around), and I’m extremely philosophical (in my opinion), and I don’t allow emotion to play into the mix. The slight wisdom that I can muster tells me that a big bang couldn’t possibly have made everything so perfect. And I watched “Oh God” with George Burns when I was about 20, and his explanation seemed about right: “I don’t do miracles. The last one I did was the ’69 Mets, and now I don’t think that was such a good idea.” And; “I don’t meddle. I did all this for you. I put everything in place. The rest is up to you.”

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