Separation of Church and State? Not on MY watch!
Earlier this week, a state judge in Texas, ruled that cheerleaders at public high school football games could make and carry banners with Christian religious verses on them. These banners would be held for football players to run through at the start of the game.
Judge Stephen Thomas, in his ruling, wrote that, “The evidence in the case confirms that religious messages expressed on run-through banners have not created, and will not create, an establishment of religion in the Kountze community”.
I wonder, of course, how Thomas could possibly know whether or not these banners create an establishment of religion in the community. How do contenders for political office advertise their candidacy? Among other things, they put up signs and advertisements. So how is relaying Bible verses at public football games not exactly the same?
I know Texas is a state filled with Christians. However, I don’t think it’s likely that every single person at that school is Christian. I think it’s even less likely that every single person in the stands at the stadium is Christian. And yet Thomas is allowing students to hold up these signs in support of Christianity.
You know what makes me even more upset than the ruling, though? It’s the thought of these Christians in Texas, screaming and dancing around, all happy for the decision. It’s, once again, atheists being told that their way of life is wrong and backwards. It’s the idea that the Constitution upholds the separation of church and state, but that our legislators feel the need to ignore that, and instead find any loophole possible to allow people to push their Christian agenda.
I’m thankful that I teach in a state that – while not perfect – at least isn’t so backwards and Christian that it allows mockery to be made of the very values that should govern our educational system.