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Who said we ‘can’t favor religion over non-religion?’ Justice Scalia dismisses notion of neutrality

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U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said Saturday that God has been good to the United States and that the notion of religious neutrality is not grounded in our constitutional traditions.

He made his remarks at a Catholic high school in Metairie, Louisiana, a suburb of New Orleans, according to The Associated Press, which reported.

He told the audience at Archbishop Rummel High School that there is “no place” in the country’s constitutional traditions for the idea that the state must be neutral between religion and its absence.


“To tell you the truth there is no place for that in our constitutional tradition. Where did that come from?” he asked. “To be sure, you can’t favor one denomination over another but can’t favor religion over non-religion?”

The AP also reported:

He also said there is “nothing wrong” with the idea of presidents and others invoking God in speeches. He said God has been good to America because Americans have honored him.

Scalia said during the Sept. 11 attacks he was in Rome at a conference. The next morning, after a speech by President George W. Bush in which he invoked God and asked for his blessing, Scalia said many of the other judges approached him and said they wished their presidents or prime ministers would do the same.


“God has been very good to us. 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,” Scalia said.

Scalia has consistently been one of the court’s most conservative justices since his appointment by then-President Ronald Reagan in 1986.

Watch the report below.


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