Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor accused the court’s conservative members of trying to “dismantle the wall of separation between church and state” in a blistering dissent that was released on Tuesday.

The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 in Carson v. Makin, holding that the government could not prevent its citizens from receiving taxpayer-funded financial aid for private religious instruction.

“U.S. Supreme Court just ruled in a 6-3 decision that preventing school choice families from taking their children’s taxpayer-funded education dollars to religious private schools violated the Free Exercise Clause of the 1st Amendment,” said school choice advocate Corey DeAngelis in a tweet announcing the decision.

“This Court continues to dismantle the wall of separation between church and state that the Framers fought to build,” Sotomayor wrote in her dissent. “In just a few years, the Court has upended constitutional doctrine. shifting from a rule that permits States to decline to fund religious organizations to one that requires States in many circumstances to subsidize religious indoctrination with taxpayer dollars.”

It’s obvious that one of our Supreme Court justices doesn’t even know what the phrase “separation of church and state” means in its truest sense.

Understanding the circumstances in which the phrase “separation of church and state” was penned will help us grasp what it originally meant. Those who came to America in order to create a more perfect union did not want everyone to fall into the traps that existed in England.

The concept of the separation of religion and state does not imply that one cannot discuss religious matters within a government capacity or bring up political issues in a religious setting. It would be entirely misinformed to suggest either of those things.

The first thing to know is that the separation of church and state is not something that is in the Constitution. It was a term that was coined by Thomas Jefferson afterwards.

The Congressional Record (required by the Constitution in Art. i, Sec. 5, ¶ 3) contains all the official words and acts that occur in congressional chambers. Those records therefore include the discussion of the ninety Founders in the first federal Congress who, from June 8 to September 25, 1789, framed the First Amendment.22 In those lengthy discussions that spanned months, the Founders repeatedly explained that they were seeking to prevent what they had experienced under Great Britain: the legal establishment by the national government of a single religious denomination in exclusion of all others (whether Catholic, Anglican, or any other). Very simply, their oft-repeated intent was that Congress could not officially establish any one denomination in America; or, in the wording proposed by James Madison, “nor shall any national religion be established.”

(Significantly, the word “religion” in the Founders’ First Amendment discussions was often used interchangeably with the word “denomination.” For example, the original version of the First Amendment introduced in the Senate on September 3, 1789, stated, “Congress shall not make any law establishing any religious denomination.” The second version stated, “Congress shall make no law establishing any particular denomination.” The third version was very similar, declaring, “Congress shall make no law establishing any particular denomination in preference to another.” The final version passed on that day declared, “Congress shall make no law establishing religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Clearly, the word “religion” had been used interchangeably with “denomination” throughout their discussions, and this is why the First Amendment prohibited the national government from establishing any single “religion,” or denomination.)

Sources:
LearntheTheology | Daily Wire

Daniel

Daniel is a conservative syndicated opinion writer and amateur theologian. He writes about topics of politics, culture, freedom, and faith.

View all posts

39 comments

Leave a Reply to THX 1138 Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  • Behold!

    The results of putting activist, political hacks within such a decisive governing body whose one main task is simply to properly interpret the laws during disputes between parties.

    • No, nooo, NO! She was a hand picked dyed in the wool rabid Marxist!

      …Idiot? No! …Traitor? Yes!

    • Yes, this supposedly “intelligent latina” is either dumb as a box of rocks, or just as anti-Constitution, anti-American as we all knew she was, from the day she was nominated by fraudbama.

      • From the same place that many Leftists get the idea that “Trump [and his supporters] are fascists”.

        Few Americans, Left or Right, know anything about Communism and Fascism, which are words to describe mainly European political phenomena, and pehnomena of the first half of the 20th Century at that.

        So they’re just used as swear-words, like ‘bastard’ — not really meant literally.

  • Sotomayor is mistaking the court’s decision as the Court’s having misunderstanding of the Separation Clause when the actual fact kid that she has misunderstood the Free Exercise Clause. On top of that there is no “Wall of Separation” which prohibits what has for over200 years been a comfortable coexistence between government and faith-based organizations.

    The only reason we are having a debate about it is the unholy coexistence between loons like M.M. O’hare and six Liberal, Justices who legislated from the Bench.

    • Absolutely! And the when she hits the bottom step, throw her communist asssss out of the country along with the rest of the democrap party!

  • Sotomayor is one of, if the the most unqualified justice in the Supreme Court. She doesn’t uphold her oath of office and deliberately twists our Constitution to suit her leftist ideology. Unfortunately, these were the reasons the Manchurian president nominated her in the first place. Worse, the GOP didn’t have the votes, nor the will, to fight her nomination – just like they didn’t when biden nominated Jackson who released pedophile criminals.

  • Sorry, there is no “separation of church and state” mentioned anywhere in the Constitution>
    I will give anyone $1000.00 if you can show me it.

    • You obviously do not know or prefer not to agree with 1st amendment. Anyway, just donate the $1k to a good church or home for orphans.
      Vet

      • (“You obviously do not know or prefer not to agree with 1st amendment”)

        “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”

        The Establishment Clause in the 1st Amendment prohibits the government (Congress) from making any law “respecting an establishment of religion.” This clause not only forbids the government from establishing an “official religion”, but also prohibits government actions that unduly favor one religion over another. It also prohibits the government from unduly preferring religion over non-religion, or non-religion over religion.

        Since the introduction of the Department of Education, a government agency, it’s safe to say that the education system is controlled by the government (Congress), therefore: any law, regulation, prohibition, etc. that shows a deference to religious or non-religious groups is a violation of the first amendment’s Establishment Clause.

        For the government (Department of Education vis a vi Congress) to prevent its citizens from receiving taxpayer-funded financial aid for private religious instruction is a violation of the Establishment Clause in the 1st Amendment (preferring religion over non-religion, or non-religion over religion).

        Concerning the “Wall of Separation” between the Church and State argument (that has been misconstrued), that statement came about in 1801 when the Danbury Baptist Association in Connecticut was concerned that the government was going to establish a National Denomination. Thomas Jefferson responded by letter on January 1, 1802, assuring them that there was no basis to the rumor. He said, “I contemplate with solemn reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should `make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church and State.”

        This ‘wall of separation’ thing has been misconstrued/ misquoted over the years, and people fail to just read the context of what Jefferson meant when he made that statement.

        The Supreme Court may have got this one right for a change.

      • Look here for the secularists’ argument:
        https://www.learnreligions.com/separation-of-church-and-state-myth-249688

        What they argue is that the Founders did want government to do anything that would favor religion in general …. not just a particular denomination. (One of the following comments spells that out.)

        Here, I think they are seeing what they want to see. It is true that many of the Founders were men of the Enlightenment, some of them probably Deists, and maybe even atheists (like Thomas Paine.)

        But that they did not want government to favor religion in general, is a stretch.

        Today, as belief in organized religion fades away, they might well take that position — in order to hold the country together, as a greater and greater proportion of its population become non-religious. But I don’t think this was true 250 years ago.

  • Our Founders also encouraged the Church to engage in politics, but, prevented the government from interfering in the Church. This is the reason politicians gave the Church a 501 tax exemption, in order to keep the Church out of politics. Any Church that got itself involved in government affairs was threatened with the removal of their 501 exemption. Unfortunately, many didn’t interfere, and worse, over time, many Churches came to believe the deceptive political rhetoric of the separation of Church and state. And today, the only thing about our Constitution that students in public school learn are the twisted lies told them by their leftist teachers, the liberal media, and from SCOTUS unconstitutional “opinions.” In fact, most citizens don’t know that SC Justices are to give their “opinions” not rulings or that the President is supposed to be a watchman on Federal judges who violate our Constitution.

  • First of all, Well done to Daniel for checking the historical record on the discussions regarding the First Amendment. We need to do the same for the Second Amendment, because that subject is another major issue of our time. It is being debated in the context of the meaning of the Bill of Rights. Basically, that Bill is a list of examples of rights and powers not being ceded to the federal government to have any jurisdiction over; that government being one of limited and delegated powers – “few and defined,” in the rather authoritative words of the man fairly called the Father of the Constitution, James Madison, and as emphasized in the 9th and 10th Amendments. In our federal form of government, most domestic matters remain in the hands of the several States, as codified in their state constitutions. Thus, we have been misled for a very long time in this country about ‘our constitutional rights’. Just as with the issue of abortion, the issue of ‘bearing arms’ is properly a state, not a federal, matter (with a nod to the status of state militias and their ‘well regulation’). I understand that some commentators on this issue talk about how we are ‘born with certain rights,’ as referenced in the Declaration of Independence; but that is a prevailing value, or sentiment, until such things are codified, under the rule of law, via our constitutions, state and federal. So, if conservatives are going to demand that we live by the rule of law in the matter of abortion – and return its jurisdiction to its rightful location in the States – then they need to do the same in regards to other such issues. What’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. And note: I also understand that some (a lot of) commentators talk about how the Bill of Rights got turned on its head wholesale by the 14th Amendment, and made to apply FROM the FEDERAL government to the STATES (under a fancy judicial-sounding term called ‘incorporation’) . But that is a nonsense. The 14th Amendment only applies to some very specific issues, named therein.
    What a can of worms this is. But it must be dealt with. We either live by and under the rule of law or we don’t. The alternative is living by arbitrary law. Also known as tyranny.

    • A very perceptive, informed comment! We ought to be consistent here.

      How much easier things would be, if we just left them to the states wherever possible!

      Mississippi could outlaw homosexuality, Calfornia could make it compulsory, and if you didn’t like it where you were, you could move. [I hope this doesn’t sound sarcastic. I’m being serious.]

  • “Congress shall make no law establishing religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” This is the basis of the misnomer “separation of church and state.” Sotomayor has either never read the Constitution, or else endeavors to ignore or misinterpret the parts that do not agree with her biased, ill-informed world view. It is a travesty that a person with her ingrained bigotry and inability to adjudicate fairly and logically sits on the highest court of the land. May God have mercy on the United States of America.

  • Do you mean that the “wise Latina” doesn’t know basic historical facts? I’m so surprised. I wonder if SHE could define the term “woman?”

  • Idiot! The government doesn’t have any money! The money comes from the taxpayers who have the right to allocate it in any way that they wish.

  • JUST ANOTHER LIBTURD PHONY “JUDGE” UPSET BECAUSE MANY LIBTURD VIEWPOINTS ARE FALLING “OFF THE CLIFF”. AND THAT IS A GOOD THING

  • The late Dr. D. James Kennedy used to say: “The words ‘wall,’ ‘separation,’ ‘church,’ and ‘state’ appear NOWHERE in the First Amendment. Other than that, I guess they got it.”

  • If this is true, then why does the Federal Government make “allowances” for Muslims in public school to conduct prayers to Allah. Federal hypocrites! Sotomayer is Commie scum. You won’t hear that Commie Senator, Chuck Schumer, calling for her murder like he demanded for the Conservative justice Brett Kavanaugh.

  • Separation of state and church Does not include separation of church and state. In short: the state shall not tell the church how to conduct its business, however, the church has every right to tell the state how to conduct its business because God reigns on high. God’s Word explains how we are to conduct business with others.

    • This is very true. And as we all know, God is a conservative Republican. He hates the minimum wage, and was all in favor of invading Iraq.

  • I wonder if she ever read our wonderful Constitution? I also wonder if she knows what life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness means. I wonder if she knows that 5 Republicans and 2 Democrats voted for killing Babies back in 1973. I wonder if she a real American or a flat out Commie. Why is she on the bench at all.

GET MORE STORIES LIKE THIS

IN YOUR INBOX!

Sign up for our daily email and get the stories everyone is talking about.