God has removed his blessing from America and this great nation is on the edge of ruin.

Well that’s according to one of my family members who said this to me after a heated back and forth discussion of politics and religion on Facebook: “We turned our backs on God and he has removed his blessings and protection. This is why it's over.”

The only thing “over” was that conversation.

When someone spouts something they can’t back up with facts or logic there’s no point in continuing the debate.

But it got me thinking about God’s blessing.

My family member isn’t the first to claim such nonsense. Many religious leaders have made such claims over the years.

Here is just a sampling of such quotes:

“AIDS is not just God's punishment for homosexuals; it is God's punishment for the society that tolerates homosexuals.”

— Jerry Falwell, Southern Baptist pastor and televangelist

“For the United States to get into a deal where they’re trying to split Jerusalem and take it away from the Israelis and split up their capital — huge mistake. You are asking for the wrath of Almighty God to fall on this nation and when it falls it won’t be fun, it won’t be fun.”

— Pat Robertson, former Southern Baptist minister and chairman of the Christian Broadcasting Network.

“It seems clear that the prophetic times I have been expecting for decades have finally arrived. And even worse, it appears that the judgment of America has begun.”

— Hal Lindsey, evangelist and Christian writer

If God has removed his blessing, when exactly did God bless us to begin with?

Was it during the Salem witch trials where executed 20 women accused of witchcraft?

Or was it during the era of slavery?

Did we perhaps have God’s blessing during segregation?

Did we have God’s blessing during the forced internment of over 100,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II?

Did we have God’s blessing during the Mexican Repatriation where we forced a half million American citizens of Mexican descent to relocate to Mexico?

Did we have God’s blessing during the trail of tears where we forced thousands of Native Americans from their homes to a distant part of the country, many of whom died along the way.

The religious right has used the scare tactic of God’s blessing over the heads of Christians for many years to manipulate them into doing what they want.

But America, throughout its history, has committed egregious acts against its own people and yet the Christian majority never calls those acts into question. Instead its only when there’s a threat to their own power, influence, moral beliefs, etc. that they decide God has abandoned America.

So the next time you hear someone say “God removed his blessing from America” the question should be “when exactly did we have it to begin with?”