The Court and the Cross
The Religious Right's Crusade to Reshape the Supreme Court
By Frederick S. Lane, III
(Beacon Press (MA), Paperback, 9780807044254, 263pp.)
Publication Date: June 2009
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The Religious Right has dedicated much of the last thirty years to molding the federal judiciary, always with an eye toward casting the Supreme Court in its image. Through broad political work that has involved grassroots campaigns as much as aggressive lobbying, and a welltended career path for conservative law students and attorneys, the Right has been incredibly effective in influencing major Court decisions on everything from laws banning prayer in school to women's secure access to abortion and birth control. How will the courts set in place in recent decades confront stem cell research, gay rights, or euthanasia in a new era? In The Court and the Cross, attorney and legal journalist Frederick Lane draws on legal history and savvy political analysis to expose, in layperson's terms, the Religious Right's unrelenting efforts to declare the United States a Christian nation.
Separation of church and state is so basic a part of American values and history that it is hard to realize it is under threat. This is a colorful and compelling book.—Anthony Lewis, author of Freedom for the Thought We Hate
"Nowhere has the Religious Right's effort to remake America been more successful, or more poorly understood, than in its campaign to control the courts, a campaign rooted in a revisionist history that seeks to write secularism out of the nation's past. Frederick Lane's illuminating, important The Court and the Cross punctures the movement's canards and deftly explains what's at stake."—Michelle Goldberg, author of Kingdom Coming
"This timely and disturbing book offers a much-needed wake-up call to all who cherish our Constitution and understand that the separation of church and state was America's founding gift to its own citizens and the world." —Susan Jacoby, author of The Age of American Unreason
"If you are not sure that the decisions of the Supreme Court matter much to you in your daily life, read The Court and the Cross and I guarantee you'll be rethinking that position. The Court's erosion of your individual religious freedom and the dictates of your conscience has already begun."—The Reverend Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State and author of Piety & Politics