An adverse event to education in America took place when the Supreme Court ruled in Engel v. Vitale on June 25, 1962, that prayer was unconstitutional in public schools. There is more to know about it. The “Separation of Church and State” advocates launched one of their most damaging volleys in the cultural war in this case. God was officially expelled from the classroom. The vote was 6-1with two justices not taking part. Christians began to realize the culture was becoming unfriendly to their faith, which was once a vital part of America’s life and culture. Religion and morality are no longer seen as necessary by the Left for good government. Therefore, it should not be taught in schools as was called for in the Northwest Ordinance. Religion is now ridiculed in schools today and instructions in morality are being replaced by promiscuous sex education and drag queen story time. Those justices who ruled prayer to be unconstitutional cited the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment as their reason for making this decision. There is a major disconnect with this ruling. The justices felt it is unconstitutional for school systems supported by taxpayer dollars to have anything religious going on which those dollar would support. First objection is that the restriction in the First Amendment was applied to the federal government not to the states. Secondly, if it applied to the federal government, why are federal educational institutions exempted? You may be wondering what federal educational institutions? There are at least three commonly known as our military academies, Army at West Point, Navy at Annapolis and Air Force at Colorado Springs. These are federally run colleges specializing in military service training. All students are on full scholarship at taxpayer expense and must serve six years following graduation in military service. It is interesting to note these academies all have chaplains who conduct religious service on their grounds. The Air Force has an architectural stunning chapel which was started in 1959 and completed in September of 1962, three months after the court decision on prayer in schools. State universities go to great efforts to make sure the doctrine of separation of church and state is followed. Why then do these three historical unique federal institutions get to have religious facilities and staff which are financed by federal tax revenue?
The best answer is tradition and precedence. The U. S. Military Academy at West Point was established in 1802 some 14 years after the Constitution was ratified. The men who drafted the esteemed document would have still been alive. In 1791, the first military chaplain was appointed and many followed. There were chaplains who served at West Point from its founding. All this is evidence the framers of the Constitution saw no conflict between religion in federally run academies and the First Amendment. Left leaning judges chose to ignore years of precedence to advance their political agenda and our children are paying the price in classrooms today. If the federal supported academies can have a welcome religious presence on their campuses, every school in America should have the same privilege.