Should the religious consider themselves above the law?

30 07 2006

Remember the story of the Jewish family who were forced to flee a small town in Delaware because they had challenged the militant promotion of Christianity that transpires there? The issue has received recent coverage in the New York Times (get BugMeNot) in an article which also featured the following comment:

“Because Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior, I will speak out for him,” said the Rev. Jerry Fike of Mount Olivet Brethren Church, who gave the prayer at Samantha’s graduation. “The Bible encourages that.” Mr. Fike continued: “Ultimately, he is the one I have to please. If doing that places me at odds with the law of the land, I still have to follow him.”

The context of the remark is the question of whether Christian (and more to the point, Christian-only) proselytism should be permitted in a public school, given that the First Amendment to the US Constitution and the principle of separation of church and state preclude this.

Should the religious consider themselves above the law?

UPDATE: More comment at Pharyngula.

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