Yet, if the Supreme Court follows its pattern in such cases, prayer will be banned at VMI and the Naval Academy, and at all public universities. Sherman will have marched to the sea, having expelled God from every government school in America.
It is telling that some of the last state-run schools still sponsoring prayers are places where we train military officers. Fearing God and wielding high command have always gone hand-in-hand in this republic -- which is as it ought to be, but is not the norm in human history.
Ask Caesar whether he worshipped anything more than power.
Only a few weeks ago the world watched in awe as the U.S. armed forces executed a war plan of flawless moral design. Our commanders never targeted civilians and always minimized collateral damage.
Even in war -- especially in war -- they were guided by the unchanging moral rules of Judeo-Christian tradition.
Had God Himself not issued these burdensome rules, why should anyone -- let alone a general controlling an unrivaled army -- condescend to follow them? Were there not divine authority behind the law, why should any person bend to an inconvenient code when they have the means to overwhelm its temporal enforcers?
In the school system being constructed by our courts, a future admiral could pass from kindergarten through Annapolis to command of a fleet armed with nuclear weapons without once being told there is a God who has very definite expectations about our behavior. We would have to count on the admiral's parents defeating the state-run schools in the battle for the admiral's soul.
Americans, of course, are a long, long way from having to fear destruction of our culture at the hands of our military commanders. Too bad we can't say the same about our judges.