We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
More than he wanted to be remembered for having been president, Mr. Jefferson wanted to be remembered as the author of the Virginia “Bill for Establishing Religious Freedom.” In the text of the bill he underlined this sentence: “The opinions of men are not the object of civil government, nor under its jurisdiction.” In a republic of free citizens, every opinion, every prejudice, every aspiration, every moral argument has access to the public square in which we deliberate the ordering of our life together.
In a democracy that is free and robust, an opinion is no more disqualified for being religious than for being atheistic, or psychoanalytic, or Marxist, or just plain dumb. There is, or at least there ought to be, no legal or constitutional question about the admission of religion to the public square; there is only a question about the free and equal participation of citizens in our public business. Religion is not a reified thing that threatens to intrude upon our common life. Religion in public is but the public opinion of those citizens who appeal to religion in public.
I have profound respect for stare decisis - it is the core of the philosophy of Edmund Burke and Russell Kirk. However, they also stress the necessity of considered progress. I sense that the makeup of the Supremes is shifting. To my way of thinking, the shift to a more Liberal (classical) view on free speech is best served by a series of very narrow decisions. This will incite the Left to go ballistic and vent all bombast on decisions that most find quite practical. They will exhaust their credibility swatting flies When the big ones come they will be perceived as they truly are. I imagine that many of them will flee the coming Kingdom of Billy Graham. I hope that they buy one way tickets.