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Author: albaby1 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 485187  
Subject: Re: Remove "In God We Trust"; Whitehou Date: 1/18/2013 12:13 PM
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If we ever get some atheists on the court, it will be a no-brainer to them.

It's pretty unlikely to be a no-brainer, even then. No matter their personal views, or even their views on the substance of the matter, any Justice is going to look at the sizable precedent that's built up over the years construing the Establishment Clause and be cognizant of stare decisis. You'd have to completely upend the entirety of Establishment Clause jurisprudence to adopt a rule that says, for example, that government is forbidden from any involvement in any religious activity, message, or entity - which is really the only context in which this becomes a 'no-brainer'. As soon as you step back from a complete and total barrier, you start having to conduct an evaluation of what types of religious messages/activities are acceptable, and which ones aren't.

The problem for this atheist jurist is that over numerous decades of construing Establishment Clause jurisdiction, even those who have strenuously objected to allowing government to engage in specific types of religious messaging/activity have acknowledged that the EC is not an absolute prohibition on all such messaging or activity.

So unless you're talking about the atheist equivalent of Clarence Thomas - someone who is utterly uninterested in even trying to integrate his legal philosophy into the Court's established precedent - this is going to be an issue that requires some thoughtful deliberation and analysis. Not a no-brainer by any stretch.

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