American Atheists Asks Supreme Court to Review Kentucky’s ‘God Protects Us From the Terrorists’ Law

Back in 2006, politicians in Kentucky passed a law that required the state’s Department of Homeland Security to declare in its training materials that security was unattainable without reliance on “Almighty God.” It also required a plaque to be installed at the Department’s entrance saying as much.

The safety and security of the Commonwealth cannot be achieved apart from reliance upon Almighty God as set forth in the public speeches and proclamations of American Presidents, including Abraham Lincoln’s historic March 30, 1863, Presidential Proclamation urging Americans to pray and fast during one of the most dangerous hours in American history and the text of President John F. Kennedy’s November 22, 1963, national security speech which concluded: “For as was written long ago: ‘Except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.’”

It may sound innocuous, but failure for the Homeland Security director to comply with the law would mean spending “up to twelve months in the county jail.”

American Atheists sued the state at the time. A lower court judge was on their side, but an Appeals Court reversed that decision with a 2-1 vote. Then, AA went to the state’s Supreme Court… but last August, the court said it didn’t even want to look at the case.

Which brings us to last week.

AA asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its case (PDF).

[AA attorney Edwin] Kagin said, “This is one of the most egregiously and breathtakingly unconstitutional actions by a state legislature that I’ve ever seen.”

It’s unlikely the Supreme Court will hear the case — most requests for a hearing get turned down — but it’s worth fighting for. We’re in big trouble if our government requires us to acknowledge that God is the person keeping us safe and that we can’t be safe without his protection.

If God was so good at keeping us safe, we wouldn’t need a Department of Homeland Security in the first place.

Plus, it turns out the enemies believe in a God, too… but there I go again, trying to be logical when assessing the actions of religious politicians.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.


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