Scalia: Government Should ‘Favor Religion Over Non-Religion’

The constitutional separation of church and state should not be interpreted as a repudiation of religion, according to Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.

The conservative judge argued Saturday that while “you can’t favor one denomination over another,” the government is allowed to “favor religion over non-religion,” The Associated Press reported. Scalia told students at a Catholic high school in Louisiana that the law does not mandate equal protections for religion and the lack of faith. “To tell you the truth, there is no place for that in our constitutional tradition,” he said. “Where did that come from?”

Scalia defended presidents and other government officials who mention a supreme being during their speeches. “God has been very good to us,” he said. “That we won the revolution was extraordinary. The Battle of Midway was extraordinary. I think one of the reasons God has been good to us is that we have done him honor. Unlike the other countries of the world that do not even invoke his name, we do him honor: in presidential addresses, in Thanksgiving proclamations and in many other ways. There is nothing wrong with that, and do not let anybody tell you that there is anything wrong with that.”

Former President Ronald Reagan nominated Scalia for the Supreme Court in 1986. He is the panel’s most veteran member.

Photo: Mother Jones

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