Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Cluck Cluck

From The Blade:

WASHINGTON – Ruling on Flag Day, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a federal appeals court ruling yesterday that the phrase “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance was an unconstitutional establishment of religion. But the narrow rationale for the ruling leaves the door open to future challenges.

The majority based its decision not on its reading of the First Amendment but rather on its conclusion that Michael A. Newdow, the California atheist who objected to the saying of the pledge in his daughter’s elementary school classroom, lacked standing to bring suit because he doesn’t have legal custody of the child.

If they had ruled that “under God” was unconstitutional, the Religious Reich would have gone ape, saying that yet again the heathens had kicked God out of America. And if they had ruled that the phrase was unimportant and did not qualify as the state sanctioning religion, the wingers would have been pissed to have the Almighty turned into a trivial prepositional phrase. So they throw it out on the technicality of Mr. Newdow’s questionable standing as the child’s legal guardian. I am sure there are lawyers who can cite cases with weaker precedents of standing that made it through the Court, and I wonder why the justices even accepted the case last winter if there was a question of Mr. Newdow’s standing.

What a chicken-shit way to get out of making a ruling.