Reviving Religious Tests for Public Office

Article VI of the Constitution contains the clause that reads, “no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.” This is was the first time that any nation had explicitly rejected religious discrimination (Britain under the Toleration Act still maintained numerous religious tests to be a member of the government.)

Apparently Leo DiCaprio wishes to junk this provision of the Constitution. From The Hill:

Politicians who don’t believe in climate change should not hold public office, said actor Leonardo DiCaprio Monday at the White House before the screening of his new climate documentary. . .

“If you do not believe in climate change, you do not believe in facts, or in science or empirical truths and therefore, in my humble opinion, should not be allowed to hold public office.”

It is fitting that DiCaprio phrases the matter in terms of “belief.” Reminds me of the story about the late Julian Simon:

Simon once posed a question at an environmental forum: “How many people here believe that the earth is increasingly polluted and that our natural resources are being exhausted?” Almost every hand shot up. He then said, “Is there any evidence that could dissuade you?” There was no response, so he asked again, “Is there any evidence I could give you—anything at all—that would lead you to reconsider these assumptions?” Again, no response. Simon concluded, “Well, excuse me. I’m not dressed for church.”

Stephen Green asks: “I’m curious to know how much denial it takes to fill up the gas tank of a private jet.”