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December 29, 2005

Sixth Circuit Court Of Appeals Rejects "Wall of Separation Between Church And State" As "Extraconstitutional"

Pretty big news. This is from an advocacy group, so pardon the overheated tone of the writing.

In an astounding return to judicial interpretation of the actual text of the United States Constitution, a unanimous panel of the 6th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has issued an historic decision declaring that “the First Amendment does not demand a wall of separation between church and state.” In upholding a Kentucky county’s right to display the Ten Commandments, the panel called the American Civil Liberties Union’s repeated claims to the contrary “extra-constitutional” and “tiresome.”

...

6th Circuit Judge Richard Suhrheinrich wrote in the unanimous decision: “The ACLU makes repeated reference to the ’separation of church and state.’ This extra-constitutional construct has grown tiresome. The First Amendment does not demand a wall of separation between church and state. Our nation’s history is replete with governmental acknowledgment and in some cases, accommodation of religion.”

In the Intelligent Design thread, "someone" asked me how my position on teaching religion in schools as science was different than evangelical-atheist Michael Newdow's. I said something about "de minimis" infractions.

The language from the decision above says it better. I don't mind acknowledgement of religion (mentioning God before a graduation) or accomodation of religion (schools off for Christmas), but the Constitution does forbid the establishment (or endorsement, as I read it)of religion, and I think teaching an expressly evangelical-Christian Biblical-literalist belief in science class falls into that category.


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posted by Ace at 02:37 AM

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