The Supreme Court's decision to take up the explosive issue of same-sex marriage will thrust the high court into a policy debate that has divided federal and state governments and courts, as well as voters in nearly 40 states.
The extraordinary presidential election ended not with a bang but with a legal whimper from the U.S. Supreme Court. The 5-4 decision in Al Gore v. George Bush was a mishmash, provoking four separate dissents and leaving legal scholars with many loose ends and citizens with lots of questions.
One of the clichés of historians and civics textbooks is that the U.S. is an “experiment” in democracy. The inconclusive November 7 election and the subsequent wrangling over the certification of Florida’s votes have verified that it’s far from an empty cliché. This really is an experiment, and a very messy one.
Christian football fans in Texas and elsewhere are getting back at the Supreme Court. Provoked by the ruling in June that outlawed school-sponsored prayer at high school football games, some fans in Texas and North Carolina have staged prayer rallies and protests.
Perhaps only natives understand the religion that is Texas high school football. Nevertheless, the U.S. Supreme Court is slated to rule on one of its striking rituals: the pregame invocation. In a case argued before the court last month, Mormon and Catholic families in Galveston County contended that the pregame prayers amount to an unconstitutional government endorsement of religion.
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