Engel vs Vitale

Engel vs Vitale

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  • Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon Thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers and our Country.
  • The teachers started making us pray in class.
  • Father of two, Steven Engel, was upset that his son was expected to perform a nondenominational prayer in class, despite his Jewish faith.
  • That's not how we pray son.
  • This isn't right! Who's with me?
  • Engel met with four other parents, a Jew, an atheist, a Unitarian, and a Protestant, said the prayer was “contrary to the beliefs, religions, or religious practices of both themselves and their children.”
  • Yeah!
  • Engel took William J. Vitale Jr, the head of the school board, to the state court, but he was unable to get the prayer overruled.
  • The prayer will not be prohibited in the New Hyde School District.
  • While they did not remove the prayer, students were still allowed to refrain from reciting it in class.
  • Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon Thee, and we be Thy blessings upon us…
  • ...
  • Does the reading of a nondenominational prayer at the start of the school day violate the "establishment of religion" clause of the first amendment? Engel decided to take this question past the state court, all the way to the Supreme Court. Here, he claimed that the first amendment was in fact violated, since it was not inclusive to all religions.
  • A direct violation of the first amendment
  • ...
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