Apparently, the folks of Americans United for Separation of Church and State have a problem with prayer at West Point. One has to wonder how many of their members have ever put their lives on the line in service to America.
David J. Hacker of Speak Up University blog reports.
Atheists Wage War Against West Point
I’ve never been in the military. But I’ve known a few good men and women who have served our country. And I know that when they are putting their life on the line, the comforting prayer or counsel from a military chaplain has made a huge difference. That’s why I was disturbed to see last month that Americans United for Separation of Church and State sent a letter to the United States Military Academy at West Point.
AU wrongly claims the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment is offended whenever military chaplains solemnize an event with an invocation or benediction, which only occurs at a handful of events each year. Alliance Defending Freedom responded by sending a letter to West Point on behalf of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, confirming that West Point’s practice of solemnizing events with invocations or benedictions is completely constitutional. Here’s why.
The United States Army has offered soldiers the opportunity to hear solemnizing prayers since the Revolutionary Days. General George Washington asked his chaplains to pray for the troops during those critical days at Valley Forge. West Point has offered invocations and benedictions at important events in cadet careers since its founding in 1802.
In fact, before the ratification of the First Amendment, Congress authorized the appointment and use of commissioned chaplains, in part to offer solemnizing prayers at crucial moments in a soldier’s life and our Nation’s history. If this tradition was established before ratification of the Establishment Clause, then the Founding Fathers clearly didn’t think it was a problem.