Engel Vs. Vitale Essay, Research Paper
In 1962 the case of Engel vs. Vitale came about. At first the government stated that a non-God believing person or a person of a different culture could be except from saying the prayer. The morning prayer was done after the pledging of the flag. The prayer was such; ” Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependency upon thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers, nd our country”. However a group of parents said that even though there children were except from saying the prayer it made them uncomfortable and feel like outsiders amongst the follow student body. The parents and lawyers claimed by having this prayer at all went against the Establishment clause of the constitution. By doing so the decision was made to remove the prayer from schools period. For several years this had a reversed descrimination effect. Students were no longer able to carry bibles in school or voice their opinion about their beliefs. This went completely against the freedom of speech amendment. In some absurd, rare case student government reps. got suspention from school for addressing God in their public speeches within the school. Eventually this was put to a end, and the laws stated that students could form religious groups and clubs within a public school as long as the administration had no involvement of it whatsoever; therefore maintaining the rights to freedom of speech and peaceful assembly.
Since prayer in the schools has been removed the crime rate, and illegal acts have more than doubled in the public school system. Many politicians and theologians claim that the two have a direct relation. Prayer in the schools were in effect for over two hundred years in our nation. At no point did any of the politicians of the past come against it, including the people who wrote and signed the constitution. Amendment I of Article VII of the constitution states- Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise therof; or abridging the Freedom of speech, or the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a address of grievances. This law was formed to protect the church from the government not the government from the church. America was founded on a group of people who left there country so they could practice freedom of religion. England would not allow them to practice their religion and they were persecuted if they did. Any historian or theologian will verify that Amendment one was put into law so that the government could not come into a established church or home and interfere with there practice of religion.