Is Atheism just another religion?
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel in San Francisco, a couple days ago, rejected two legal challenges by Sacramento atheist Michael Newdow, who said the references to God, in the Pledge of allegiance, are unconstitutional and infringe on his religious beliefs. Bringing these type cases seem to be popular with some on the extreme left and Atheists.
It appears that, at least when it comes to the Pledge of Allegiance, the courts are becoming consistent, but is it just a matter of time and obfuscation that will one day put Atheist over the top? After all isn’t the conventional wisdom that only non religious speech is allowed in public places?
There are some folk that don't really understand what all these lawsuits against the pledge of allegiance are all about. Let me see what I can add to this understanding. There are only 2 basic ways of looking at the universe and all things that come from it. They are called World Views.
1. God created the universe and all things in it and therefore make the rules.
2. We and the universe made ourselves and we make our own rules.
The Declaration of Independence makes it very understandable, that the Creator, of nature made the universe and gave all rights to men and that Governments are brought into power to secure those rights. Think about it! If man makes the rights he can take the rights.
Furthermore, a world view, is a world view, is a world view! Why should those with the second world view have the right to impose their view on everyone else? A ruling like Atheists want would bring about a situation making possible public enforcement of the second world view.
Such atheist rulings would be saying to the expression of the founding principle of our rights, "Stay in the shadows and in private places. Do not show yourself in the public square."
That is how serious this is and not many Judges or public officials seem to be able to articulate the hypocrisy of it all.
The truth be told, both world views, are statements about God. One says he exists and the other saying that he does not. Then, it should be very clear that one view is just as religious as the other and both comes with their all encompassing doctrines.
This truth is clear that Secular Humanism, the idea that there is no God and all morals and ethical rules comes rightly from man himself, is not new. Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black, in a US legal context was in 1961, although church-state separation lawyer Leo Pfeffer had referred to it in his 1958 book, Creeds in Competition.
So, no matter how some stringently argue separation of church and State to make their view the magna cum laude of the public square, it is not so easy for a knowledgeable Judge. Alas, judging from some of the rulings that you may have heard about, if you are an atheist or Christian, they may not seem apropos. On the other hand as far as world views are concerned you are not so different that the court can easily see which is night and which is day.
Perhaps the courts should simply understand that, “Congress shall make no laws respecting the establishment of religion or forbidding the FREE exercise of it.” And rule anything that does not abide by this Constitutional principle as unconstitutional.
by Bill Sullivan