An Aura of Ownership

The purpose of solemnizing prayer before a legislative session is to create an aura of ownership over the proceedings which follow. Five Catholics on the Supreme Court find that permissible.

Although bringing church to work feels wholly comfortable to the Catholic conservatives on the court, no large corporation in the US would countenance invocations or prayers before business meetings: the inappropriateness would be more than obvious. It might even be seen as religious harassment, something the justices can’t imagine so long as the prayers occur in a government venue rather than a corporate one.

The court has made it clear that our Constitution is no barrier to the sense of ownership Christians love to assert over government meetings. From the beginning Christians have taken advantage of their majority status to push their particular religious practices (such as prayer or invocations to the Lord) into sessions of government at federal, state, and local levels. James Madison understood how pernicious such infringements can be. After issuing a proclamation for a national day of prayer during the war of 1812 (a war during which the British burned the white house), Madison came to regret it for “seem[ing] to imply and certainly nourish the erroneous idea of a national religion.”

But the Catholic court has decided otherwise, and if we are to dislodge this sense of Christian ownership over our government, we must attack Christianity at it weakest point. What is this weakness? It is the barbaric morality and pagan doctrines that hang round its neck like rotting flesh. This 1900 year old religion is an ancient carcass preventing Americans from moving forward and taking care of human needs in the modern world. We will make that plain. Held back by the rot of their religion, many Christians have embraced torture, prejudice, and ignorance—a fact captured repeatedly in polls.

If we are to turn American government around, we must reduce Christianity to minority status. We must ridicule and attack and expose it. We must force believers to see their religion from the outside, and face its fundamental flaws and absurdities.

The Catholics on the court have left no other way open to us. They have enshrined a political role for their religion, and in doing so have made Christianity fair game.

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