For the second time, a lawsuit brought by Michael Newdow has made its way to the Supreme Court… only to be dismissed.
Newdow famously tried to remove “Under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance in 2002, but the Supreme Court said in 2007 that he “lacking standing” to bring the case to them and dismissed it.
More recently, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled against him in his attempt to get “In God We Trust” off the currency, saying that “the phrase is ceremonial and patriotic and ‘has nothing whatsoever to do with the establishment of religion.’”… so Newdow appealed his case to the Supreme Court.
Yesterday, the Court refused to hear his case, effectively putting an end to this attempt at righting a wrong.
The phrase never should have been put on our paper money in the first place. But most people never care to learn about the history of that era; they wrongly attribute the placement to “tradition” instead of to a reaction to the “Godless Communists.”
No word on what Newdow will do now… when the Court dismissed the “Under God” case, he just filed it again with new plaintiffs. I don’t know if he’ll attempt that in this case.
One good thing about the case is that the coverage of it brings the issue to the public. Good reporters will give the facts about the case along with the historical reasons “In God We Trust” was put on the money, hopefully bringing light to the true story of what happened.
No, getting god off the money isn’t the biggest issue atheists face in America, but it’s a symbolic issue and we’re still on the right side of it.
***Update***: I asked Newdow about his thoughts regarding the Court’s decision and what his next steps would be. His response:
The denial of cert was expected, but it’s still a bummer.
Yes, I plan to bring the case again … and again … and again, until we get two Court of Appeals judges willing to uphold the Constitution.
Unfortunately, that may take a very long time.