Thoughts on progressive issues in Texas, the U.S. and the world.
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Reponse to letter to the editor regarding separation of church and state
In his letter “Writer is wrong about court decisions on separation of church and state” Mr. Mis argues that since the Supreme Court found slavery constitutional one can’t use their decisions as the basis for governing. Mis should remember that at the time the Constitution considered slaves only three fifths of a person but I suppose he should be forgiven that error since the Republican House reading of the Constitution conveniently skipped over that since repealed section.
Mis refers to (Zorach v. Clauson) to support his position but all one must do is read the majority opinion to understand that it in fact supports separation of church and state. The 1952 case involved New York City schools allowing students to sign out of school to attend religious instruction or devotions off campus. From the majority opinion written by Justice Douglas: “The public schools are merely accommodating the people of faith who want to receive religious education. Lack of cooperation by the state towards religion should be construed as hostility.” That’s not so far from allowing kids to sign out of school to go to the orthodontist.
I have only one question for Mr. Mis and anyone who thinks as he does, how would you feel if the prayers offered at the next meeting of the City Council you attend were offered to Hindu gods, Native American spirits or pagan earth mother? After all if you have the right to say a sectarian prayer so do they.