Removing religion is not imposing a view
USA Today- Michael Newdow


USA TODAY's editorial ''Pious and atheists, take note'' repeats an argument that, although frequently heard, makes no sense whatsoever (Editorial, Tuesday).

It characterizes attempts to remove God from government as ''imposing one's view'' -- on par with inserting God into government. Let's clarify this from the start: Having a Pledge of Allegiance that states we are ''one nation indivisible'' is not imposing an atheistic view. Saying ''One nation that denies the existence of God'' would be such an imposition, but no one is asking for that.

Returning the Pledge to its secular wording would no more impose atheism than demanding an end to segregation imposed black supremacy, or demanding that women have the right to vote was a claim that males are inferior.

Because such arguments are so obviously absurd, USA TODAY would never make them. But it goes on to make such a claim where religion is involved.

That's what the Founders realized: Religious belief can so blind people to their prejudices that they are simply unable to recognize the hypocrisy, illogic or harm that often stems from their zeal. They came up with a magnificent way to deal with this problem. It's called the ''Establishment Clause,'' and it forbids the government from advancing religion. We all should be thankful for the view it steadfastly imposes on our government.

Michael Newdow

Plaintiff in the Pledge case