It’s heard at the start of the school day and during the seventh inning of some baseball games. It’s seen on our currency and abbreviated on the Internet.
We’re talking about God.
And they were talking about God, or more specifically, the words “under God,” in the state’s highest court yesterday, Sept. 4.Justices from the SJC heard an anonymous atheist Acton couple’s claim that the presence of those words in the Pledge of Allegiance amounts to religious discrimination since the pledge is recited daily in public schools.
But in conversations about the case, both inside the court and informally among observers, concerns have been raised about the potential waves Doe v. the Acton-Boxborough Regional School District could leave in its wake.
… Chief Justice Roderick Ireland noted that everyday and even that morning, courthouses across the state, court officers use the phrase "God save the Commonwealth,'' at the start of court. Roderick suggested that if "under God'' is eliminated from the Pledge of Allegiance in schools, will it trigger a ripple effect, such as in court or sporting events.
Those sentiments have been echoed in coffee shops, on the Internet and around kitchen tables as the case has been in the headlines this week.
What Do You Think?
As a country, the United States guarantees freedom of religion and separation of Church and State, but the word God—not to be confused with the Word of God—is all over the place in American life.
Pop a quarter into a parking meter? Your thumb probably covered up the words “In God We Trust.” Catch a ball game on a Sunday or at Yankee Stadium? You’re probably going to hear “God Bless America” during the seventh-inning stretch. Type OMG on your iPhone? Take a guess at what the “G” stands for.
You get the idea.
Concern about a possible ripple effect of Doe v. Acton-Boxborough is that the case could set a precedent that goes beyond public schools, to affect those other areas where the word God makes its way into everyday life.
TELL US: Are you concerned about a possible ripple affect from the Acton couple’s challenge of the Pledge of Allegiance? Where should we, as a country, draw the line when it comes to religious freedoms and the use of the word God?