Supreme court decision
Posted: 06 May 2014 05:14 AM   [ Ignore ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  348
Joined  2006-11-27

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-27284941

I haven’t been paying attention.  If this decision isn’t egregious, our society must be regressing at an alarming rate.

 Signature 

If we’re not laughing, they’re winning.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 09:17 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2602
Joined  2012-10-27
Jeciron - 06 May 2014 05:14 AM

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-27284941

I haven’t been paying attention.  If this decision isn’t egregious, our society must be regressing at an alarming rate.

It is.

Lois

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 10:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2242
Joined  2007-04-26

I haven’t heard all the details but one comment I did hear from on of the justices basically said that adults are mature enough to sit through something they don’t believe in and not be harmed. I wonder if they would feel the same way if a citizen insisted on giving a Wicken prayer before the meeting or an atheist spoke out against the existence of god. What if they stood up without permission during the christian prayer and spoke over the person giving the prayer. Adults in the audience should be mature enough to understand what is going on and not be harmed.

 Signature 

For every complex problem there is a solution that is simple, obvious,.... and just plain wrong

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 10:16 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
Moderator
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  5551
Joined  2010-06-16

Quoting Macgyver:

one of the justices basically said that adults are mature enough to sit through something they don’t believe in and not be harmed.

  Well, that certainly describes many of the visitors sitting and listening to the Supreme Court decisions, except for not being harmed, that is.

Occam

 Signature 

Succinctness, clarity’s core.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 12:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  348
Joined  2006-11-27

I think I remember an argument holding that the injury is not caused so much by the person in the minority being subjected to the prayer, (or other rite), but by the fact that the individual is made to stand out as a minority based on a distinction which should have no validity in regard to the proceedings.  I imagine all of us have been in a situation where if we were forced to reveal our philosophical/religious viewpoint we would feel exposed in a way which would lessen our validity.  That’s one kind of problem if your at your in-laws for Christmas dinner, but it is a very different thing if you are at your town meeting trying to find support for a controversial ordinance you feel should be passed.

 Signature 

If we’re not laughing, they’re winning.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 01:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1486
Joined  2009-10-21

Marc Girolami, linked via Ed Brayton at Dispatches from the culture wars at FreeThoughtBlogs, makes a good point. Justice Kennedy said he didn’t want the government getting into the business of deciding what is a religious prayer and what is a “sectarian” prayer. First he doesn’t define “sectarian” prayer, and who would want to try. Then he makes a rule about what the prayers can contain, as Brayton comments:

they can begin their meetings with prayers as long as they don’t “denigrate nonbelievers or religious minorities” (as though the mere act of making them sit through the religious exercises of others is not an act of denigration), “threaten damnation” or “preach conversion.” But it seems to me that this standard ducks into the same punch that Justice Kennedy said was necessary to avoid when he refused to make a distinction between sectarian and non-sectarian prayer.

Really doesn’t seem that complicated to me when the prayers contain spiritual terms that are the very terms to allow the people saying them to incorporate as a religious organization in the first place. 501c3 organizations are limited in their political speech. If we can define that, defining religion should be easy.

Even if it’s hard, I would rather the Court and everybody else engage in a process where we determine what kind of statements are neutral, open to all philosophies, engaging of all parties, state values of inclusive, etc. Because that’s what government is supposed to do. We should be reminded ourselves of it every time we gather to govern.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 01:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  348
Joined  2006-11-27

It’s pretty clear that the Abrahamic religions hold, as a fundamental tenet, that unbelievers are damned.  That is the clear in their first 3 commandments.  That tenet inherently denigrates and threatens any unbeliever or member of another religion.  How do you design a Christian prayer and make it clear that in a specific instance, (i.e a civic gathering), the fundamental tenet of the Christian religion does not apply? 

Think Justice Scalia could give us an example to go by?

 Signature 

If we’re not laughing, they’re winning.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 04:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2602
Joined  2012-10-27
macgyver - 06 May 2014 10:04 AM

I haven’t heard all the details but one comment I did hear from on of the justices basically said that adults are mature enough to sit through something they don’t believe in and not be harmed. I wonder if they would feel the same way if a citizen insisted on giving a Wicken prayer before the meeting or an atheist spoke out against the existence of god. What if they stood up without permission during the christian prayer and spoke over the person giving the prayer. Adults in the audience should be mature enough to understand what is going on and not be harmed.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion .  .  .”

Supreme Courts since the Constitution was put into effect have agreed that the US government is barred from supporting or favoring one religion over another. Allowing public meetings to start with Chrisian prayers puts the US government in the position of supporting one religion over others. It has absolutely nothing to do with adults being “mature enough” to not be uncomfortable or feel they are being being harmed. Nobody should be expected to sit through a religious exercise as part of a government meeting.  How do you think “mature adults” would feel about public meetings starting with Muslim prayers or atheist statements about the probability that gods don’t exist?

What do prayers and religious statements have to do with secular government? Why should they be necessary or even tolerated in a country with a Constitution that contains an anti establishment clause and provides freedom of religion to all persons no matter what
their religious stance?

Lois

[ Edited: 08 May 2014 04:21 PM by Lois ]
Profile
 
 
Posted: 06 May 2014 06:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  368
Joined  2014-03-12

Well, this is the same court that gave us “money equals free speech” so, what can we do until some justices retire and get replaced by Hillary? I think the best approach secularists in that town can do is to apply the ruling to a variety of other religions until they can file a suit that the town is not giving equal time to other faiths. This is what happens with Christmas displays on public property and the Christians soon realize they have opened a Pandora’s box.

 Signature 

“expectation is the mother of disappointment”

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 May 2014 08:22 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
Sr. Member
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  297
Joined  2011-09-13

Conservative???  With this decision as well as some others I have to question what the so called conservative majority of the SCOTUS is attempting to conserve.  It’s obvious that their decisions often have nothing to do with conserving the Constitution.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 May 2014 09:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
Moderator
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  5551
Joined  2010-06-16

Unfortunately, the term present day Conservatives should use is Regressives.

Occam

 Signature 

Succinctness, clarity’s core.

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 May 2014 01:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  3063
Joined  2010-04-26

C’est la vie.

 Signature 

“In the end nature is horrific and teaches us nothing.” -Mutual of Omicron

Profile
 
 
Posted: 08 May 2014 04:26 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  3264
Joined  2011-08-15

Non, c’est la guerre.


Cap’t Jack

 Signature 

One good schoolmaster is of more use than a hundred priests.

Thomas Paine

Profile
 
 
Posted: 16 May 2014 09:35 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  350
Joined  2008-09-10

The law has allowed prayer at the commencement of meetings of governmental bodies for quite some.  In the past this was conditioned on the prayers not overtly fostering a particular religion.  This decision is “new” in the sense that it holds that governmental bodies in municipalities where residents or available clergy are primarily if not exclusively Christian (and by implication of another religion) are not constitutionally required to “go out of town” to find non-Christians to say non-Christian prayers.  Unfortunately it seems that in this case the prayers themselves have not merely been made by Christian clerics, but have frequently made direct reference to Jesus as God, and it appears the Supremes didn’t find this objectionable either.  I would have hoped they would at least have required that the prayers be limited to referring to an unidentified God or Providence.

 Signature 

“Against stupidity, the gods themselves struggle in vain.” 
—F. Schiller

http://theblogofciceronianus.blogspot.com

Profile