What. The. F***?!
First off, The Bill of Rights is a bit ambiguous. “an establishment of religion” is generally seen to be a church or a movement. Like the Episcopal Church. Or the Catholic Church.
I personally think this sums it up pretty well (from the CNN link above):
Circuit Judge Ferdinand Fernandez, who agreed with some elements of the decision but disagreed with the overall opinion, said phrases such as “under God” or “In God We Trust” have “no tendency to establish religion in this country,” except in the eyes of those who “most fervently would like to drive all tincture of religion out of the public life of our polity.”
“My reading of the stelliscript [majority ruling] suggests that upon Newdow’s theory of our Constitution, accepted by my colleagues today, we will soon find ourselves prohibited from using our album of patriotic songs in many public settings,” Fernandez wrote.
“‘God Bless America’ and ‘America the Beautiful’ will be gone for sure, and while use of the first and second stanzas of the Star Spangled Banner will still be permissible, we will be precluded from straying into the third. And currency beware!”
I want an island.
Now, I do understand where this is coming from. It was added in in the 1950s. The US was anti-communist. Communism, in the Soviet style, shunned organized religion. The state above all else. So it was a direct reaction to that.
It’s gotten to the point where society is evicting any piece of religion from anything political. The problem exists that, in evicting religion from our society and becoming completely secularized, those who have exized religion have not been able to replace its moral teachings.
It used to be that good people were moral. They were far above the law. People who just followed the law? they were kind of unsavory. Now? Fuck morals. People go right down below the law. Law is seen as something to beat if you get caught.
Where did it all go wrong? Somewhere in the last 225 years, a great dream got flushed down the shitter.