The U.S. Supreme Court dismissed on Monday a constitutional challenge to the words “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance recited by schoolchildren, without deciding the key church-state issue.
The justices ruled that California atheist Michael Newdow lacked the legal right to bring the challenge in the first place. “We conclude that Newdow lacks standing,” Justice John Paul Stevens declared in the opinion.
I still don’t think the Pledge is a big deal, but that doesn’t mean the Supremes don’t look like they found an excuse to duck the issue.
UPDATE: As I wrote (and headlined) this piece, it sounds like I’m accusing the Supreme Court of ducking the issue. Almost, but not quite. I wrote, it looks like they ducked it — which some people will accuse them of doing. And perhaps with some justice.
But I should have been a little more clear, and written “appears” or “gives the appearance of” or some other such weasely phrase, to get across what I meant. I honestly don’t know if the Suprmemes were trying to duck, trying to establish case law on non-custodial parents, or simply doing what they felt was right.
To be even more weasely, I can’t say I’m not unpleased with the way things turned out. Bad cases make bad law, and this one stank.