The American Theocracy

Above is the headline from Slate that appeared on my iPhone’s newsfeed this morning. In yet another move to slowly transition America from a secular democracy to a Christian theocracy, a 6-3 ruling along party lines by the Supreme Court’s conservative justices today has removed foundational, decades-old constitutional limits on religion in public schools.

Today’s decision lowers the bar between church and state in an opinion that will allow more religious expression in public spaces.

Just last week, the Court made it harder for states to decline to fund religious education. In today’s decision, the Court is making it harder for secular schools to keep religion out of extracurricular activities. In the name of defending religious exercise, the Court’s conservative majority has neutered the First Amendment’s reference to the prohibition of a state sanctioning of religion, in this case, Christianity.

And this is hot on the heels of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade after a close to 50 year effort by conservative Christians to force their idea of morality on all Americans.

Welcome to the Divine Republic of America, one nation under God. In God we trust. Praise be.

Who Won The Week — 06/26/22

The idea behind Who Won the Week is to give you the opportunity to select who (or what) you think “won” this past week. Your selection can be anyone or anything — politicians, celebrities, athletes, authors, bloggers, your friends or family members, books, movies, TV shows, businesses, organizations, whatever.

This week I am reluctantly awarding my Who Won the Week designation to conservative Christians. When I say reluctantly, it’s not because I have a grudge against conservative Christians. I believe people should be free to practice whatever religion they want to. Hey, whatever floats your boat, right?

That said, when conservative Christians insist on trying to float other people’s boats, I draw the line. But that’s what happened this week when six conservative Christian U.S. Supreme Court justices handed conservative Christians (and Republicans, most of whom are conservative and Christian) the gift they’ve been fighting for for nearly fifty years. The Court overturned Roe v. Wade, giving states run by Republicans the ability to ban abortions and to make criminals of women who choose to have abortions, doctors who perform abortions, and even anyone who aids or assists a woman who seeks an abortion.

And this purging of religious freedoms and personal liberties is just beginning, as conservative Christian’s are buoyed by this favorable Supreme Court decision by targeting the overturning of other decisions that prohibit states from making the use of contraceptives illegal, by banning gay marriage, and by removing equal protections for the LBGT community.

What’s next? Requiring kids to recite the Lord’s Prayer in public schools? Banning the teaching of evolution in science classes and mandating that Creationism be a part of the educational curriculum? How long before the Supreme Court reconsiders the First Amendment, which prohibits the Congress from making a law “respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”?

This provision of the U.S. Constitution later expanded to state and local governments, through their incorporation of the First Amendment. But just as the Supreme Court has now empowered the states to pass laws banning abortions, who’s to say it won’t also return to the states the power to make laws establishing Christianity as the official religion of any state run by run conservative Christians?

So congratulations conservative Christians. The pendulum has certainly swung your way. All I can say is stay the fuck off of my boat.

What about you? Who (or what) do you think won the week?

If you want to participate, write your own post designating who you think won the week and why you think they deserve your nod. Then link back to this post and tag you post with FWWTW.


Image credit: Hanna Barczyk for The Lily

SoCS — The Circle of Life in New America

Linda G. Hill has asked us to use “product” and “produce” in today’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt.

The United States Supreme Court yesterday overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision that guaranteed a woman’s right to obtain a legal abortion, thus allowing states to criminalize the act of terminating a pregnancy.

When I saw the two words Linda wants us to use for our posts, it made me think about how, in the eyes of six conservative Supreme Court justices, the majority of Republicans, and most Christian conservatives, the primary role of women in America is to produce a product, and that product happens to be babies.

They believe that women should have no choice in the matter. Women should not be able to decide for themselves whether or not they want to produce the product. If they happen to get pregnant, no matter the circumstances, they must produce a baby.

But once the “products” have been produced, the Vu six conservative Supreme Court justices, the majority of Republicans, and most Christian conservatives don’t give a shit about what happens to those products. The producers are on their own. They are expected to feed, clothe, shelter, and nourish the products that they produce. But those that demanded that they produce these products have moved on to other righteous battles, like banning contraception, gay marriages, or whatever other personal and private human “rights” their narrow-minded, fundamentalist views wish to take away.

But on the bright side, if every woman must produce babies, all these babies will create a larger market opportunity for the producers of firearms, enabling them to sell even more of their products. Then the products that these women produce can be more easily shot and killed by the products these gun manufacturers produce.

This is the circle of life in New America (or maybe the Divine Republic of Gilead).

Priorities

The United States Supreme Court’s priorities are all fucked up. Yesterday, as I wrote here, the six conservative justices overturned a 100 year old law in New York related to carrying guns. Today, the same six conservative justices overturned Roe v. Wade, the 50 year old decision legalizing abortions in the United States.

It seems that the Republican priorities for America are protecting the rights of gun owners and the National Rifle Association while taking away the personal rights of women to manage their own reproductive health.

What’s next? Banning contraception and gay marriage? Well, according to conservative Supreme Court Justice Clarance Thomas, the Supreme Court should reconsider rulings that protect contraception and same-sex marriage.

I don’t hate this country, but I do hate what Republicans are doing to this country.

Just What America Needs

The Supreme Court today struck down a New York law that placed strict limits on carrying guns outside the home, saying it was at odds with the Second Amendment. Despite a spate of mass shootings in America, the court’s conservative justices prevailed in a 6 to 3 decision (strictly along party lines) that struck down a New York law requiring a special need for carrying a weapon and puts at risk similar laws in Maryland, California, New Jersey, Hawaii and Massachusetts. The ruling is likely to make it easier to carry guns in some of the nation’s biggest cities.

Enacted more than a century ago, New York’s law requires those who want to carry a concealed weapon for self-defense to show a specific need for doing so.

The court’s dissenting liberals said the majority had distorted history and ignored the court’s precedents. President Biden and Democratic officials called the ruling tone-deaf and ill-timed in the wake of recent mass killings in Buffalo and Uvalde, Tex.

Of course, the National Rifle Association, which helped challenge the New York law and has longed for such a decision clarifying the constitutional right to “bear arms,” called the decision a “watershed win.”

“New Yorkers will soon be able to defend themselves outside of their homes without first having to prove that they have a sufficient ‘need’ to exercise their fundamental rights,” Jason Ouimet, executive director of the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action, said in a statement. The ruling, he said, “opens the door to rightly change the law” in the half dozen other states “that still don’t recognize the right to carry a firearm for personal protection.”

Great. Just what America needs, more guns on the streets.