Originally Posted by cmitch
You still have not explained to me where it says the government must remain 'neutral'. It just says free exercise of religion cannot be prohibited and that the Congress cannot pass a law saying you will worship this way or else. Laws have been passed prohibiting free exercise of religion. Your example that schools 'force' someone to 'chant' to their god is totally amiss. I never knew of a time even when I was a child when school prayer was legal, being 'forced' to say a prayer. You didn't have to participate if you didn't want to.
The law was obviously written to be 'inclusive' of religion but you and others like you seem to think it should be 'exclusive'.
Not really. You seem to be stuck on exercising your freedom of religion in places and at times when it must specifically being allowed by the Government by some interpretation of the existing laws. Which would make those laws unconstitutional.
I don't understand why this idea of conducting organized, daily, group praying out loud in public schools is worth so much intellectual and political capital to you. Learn, and teach your kids to pray in silence, whenever and wherever you/they want to, and you/they are protected by the Constitution. When you transition to organized, public chanting of a specific religion's prayers in a facility intended for public education, or some other tax payer funded, accessible to the entire public facility, you are overreaching. The Constitution does not protect that activity. You can do it in your home, or in your privately funded house of worship. But not in publicly funded facilities. To do so would have the Government endorse or favor "a" religion, or allow "a" religion to appear to be endorsed by the Government.
Why is that even vaguely offensive that you, the parent, be responsible for getting your kids to pray at home or privately whenever they feel the need, and not to pass that off on a teacher and make the classroom into a breeding ground for bigotry and religious tension for future generations? Seems to me it is only offensive if you want it to be for political reasons
. Which is another area we have plenty of evidence from around the world that religion should stay the hell out of - POLITICS
. Not internal Church politics. But State and Federal public policy politics. Religion and that kind of political power should not ever mix. But that is another argument.
I see this argument being fed by the same pointless logic that religious types waste on the arguments against basic science. If you really have a meaningful relationship with your God, you don't need to be displaying it to everyone else to validate it or otherwise tend to it. It is and should remain sacred and private. To declare that being restricted from public, organized displays of religious activities in tax payer funded facilities erected and operated for non-religious purposes is somehow abridging your rights to practice your religion is a fabricated issue to rile people up about.
Same with the concocted view that science can somehow be anti-religion. Science is neutral. Those who practice the Scientific Method are not motivated to prove there is no God. They are looking for answers they can find to questions, and in all cases so far, those answers can readily coexist with belief in a Supreme Being or creator. Religion only gets pitted against science when religious leaders prop up arguments for political purposes, and try to denounce scientific discoveries and theories based on interpretations of convenience about how the discoveries and theories contradict certain essential beliefs. It would be just as convenient, if there was no political axe to grind, to make interpretations that the discoveries and theories are consistent with, and add to the understanding of, the world created by the supreme being. But hell, that would spoil the fun. Like being outed for your drug use and penchant for homosexual relations from Monday thru Saturday when you spend so much time preaching about how evil these things are on Sundays.