Supreme Court Upholds Government Forcing Prayer Down Our Throats
It’s a good thing we have a Supreme Court that realizes how important its is to sanction prayer. After, all what else is a government for, if not to push religion?
The 5-4 decision in favor of the any-prayer-goes policy in the town of Greece, N.Y., avoided two alternatives that the justices clearly found abhorrent: having government leaders parse prayers for sectarian content, or outlawing them altogether.
It was written by Justice Anthony Kennedy, with the court’s conservatives agreeing and its liberals, led by Justice Elena Kagan, dissenting.
The long-awaited ruling following oral arguments in November was a victory for the the town, which was taken to court by two women who argued that a plethora of overtly Christian prayers at town board meetings violated their rights.
While the court had upheld the practice of legislative prayer, most recently in a 1983 case involving the Nebraska Legislature, the case of Town of Greece v. Galloway presented the justices with a new twist: mostly Christian clergy delivering frequently sectarian prayers before an audience that often includes average citizens with business to conduct.
And that was key to Kagan’s dissent:
“No one can fairly read the prayers from Greece’s town meetings as anything other than explicitly Christian – constantly and exclusively so,” Kagan said. “The prayers betray no understanding that the American community is today, as it long has been, a rich mosaic of religious faiths.”