I love to hear stories like these. They reveal the utter cultural otherworldliness of atheists.
There is an allegation — one that has reached all the way from Georgia to Wisconsin — that a varsity high school football coach allows local churches to prepare pre-game meals for his football team. It also alleges that the coach prayed with his team.
A tiny atheist organization in Wisconsin has formally complained to the school district. It has sent a letter of complaint. The letter was signed by a Wisconsin lawyer. It says that such practices violate the principle of the separation of church and state.
In the United states, the only established church is the public school system. The chief creed of this church is not “no child left behind.” Rather it is this: “Pray to God that our football team wins on Friday night.”
The religion of America is high school football. It has been for at least 90 years. And the South is the Bible Belt.
Back to the amusement story.
The Wisconsin outfit is the Freedom From Religion Foundation. It has sent a letter to the Superintendent of Walker County Schools that the practice of letting churches — rotating — feed the football team on Friday night is unconstitutional.
Here it is: a formal challenge to Holy Communion itself. In Georgia, when a varsity football team meets for prayer and a meal, it is assumed that God is present in a special way.
That’s the whole point. This is the church at prayer.
The fact that local churches want to play a small a part in this communion service bothers the atheists. But they have spiritual cause and effect backwards. It’s not that the churches are trying to get the players interested in the true religion. It’s that the churches are trying to get a place at the table. “Please, let us in!”
The Wisconsin organization says that its purpose is to “protect the constitutional principle of separation between state and church.” Then it ought to be calling for the closing of the tax-funded schools. That’s where America’s religion is practiced. And Holy Communion is on Friday nights.
Any coach of a high school varsity football team in the South who did not invoke God’s blessings on his team risks being fired unless his team is 8-3-1 or better for the season.
“Taking public school football teams to church, even for a meal, is unconstitutional,” wrote FFRF attorney Andrew Seidel. “This program is an egregious violation of the Establishment Clause and must cease immediately.”
Seidel said taking school children to churches and having ministers “present the Gospel of Jesus Christ” and having the food blessed “shatters the protections the First Amendment put in place.”
Andy, do you know what you are saying? Do you seriously expect a varsity football team in the South to go onto the field without God’s name being formally invoked? That would be like sending troops into battle without chaplains. But it’s far more serious than that. It would give a psychological edge to the other team.
What if the team has made the playoffs? Are you out of your mind?
Boy, don’t you want the team to win? Don’t you take high school football seriously? You are in Wisconsin. Think “Green Bay and the Packers.” Multiply that by a factor of five. This is serious!
The FFRF said a local individual complained about a longstanding tradition of local churches providing meals to the teenage football players on game day.
I can tell you one thing. Whoever complained grew up in the Bronx.
Robert Jeffress, the pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas, and a national commentator on social issues, said it’s time for Christians to stand up against the attacks from the FFRF.
The First Baptist Church in Dallas is the ecclesiastical equivalent of the Vatican in the South. It is at the very center of regional piety: deep in the heart of Texas. Here is where the true believers take their religion seriously, especially during the playoffs.
As I say, I love stories about out-of-touch atheists. It reassures me that they are not a threat to the spiritual heart of this nation. What would threaten the faith of the masses? A season in which every game in the league ended in a 0-0 tie. People would fall to their knees. “It’s the hand of God!”