This is to remind Lori Nakaguchi and Richard Aaron (letters Dec. 6) that Article VI of the U.S. Constitution states that "the Senators and Representatives before mentioned ... shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation to support this constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States."
Mr. Aaron points out, correctly, that taking the oath of office is not a religious exercise. Then he contradicts himself when he implies that swearing on a Bible is so essential to taking the oath of office that Ellison "should not be allowed to serve in Congress" if he refuses to follow "this tradition."
At least two presidents refused to swear on the Bible and took the oath of office by affirmation. The United States survived.