What Stephen Colbert said about praying sports coach left readers cringing

Stephen Colbert used June 29th’s edition of The Late Show to voice his displeasure with the Supreme Court’s decision in favor of a public high school soccer coach engaged in prayer. According to Colbert’s less than stellar analysis, the decision could pave the way for satanic sacrifices of goats at your local high school soccer game.


Worse still from Colbert’s perspective was the fact that this was not the only victory for religious liberty in the Court this term, or as he put it, “[Carson v. Makin] was not the only ruling where the conservative majority shoved their religion down our state.”

That case, Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, involved Coach Joe Kennedy trying to “yank the First Amendment away from Charlie Brown.”

Per Newsbusters, Colbert has reported that, “In the majority decision here, Justice Gorsuch writes that the coach, ‘Offered his prayers quietly while his students were otherwise occupied.’ Okay, quietly. That sounds okay. Let’s check out those quiet prayers.”

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Most people are aware that “quietly” is not the same as “silently” and that in an outdoor soccer stadium, quiet might be a relative term, but Colbert went on to share video footage from the Seattle Times in 2015 of a Kennedy-led prayer to try to prove his point.

The video was close-up footage, possibly giving the impression that the prayer was more loud than it actually was. Nevertheless, Colbert was not happy, reading Politico, he said, “Okay, I enjoy praying, but, Jesus. Now, the praying got even less private during one homecoming game, when the coach was joined by ‘a state legislator and the media.’ ‘Spectators jumped over the fence to reach the field, and people tripped over cables and fell, and school band members were knocked over.’”

Colbert ended his ramblings by saying, “If the Court finds that this type of Christian ritual is acceptable for public schools, then I’m sure they’ll be fine with all religions going to college. I can’t wait to hear the Satanic cheerleaders: ‘D-E-V-I-L! Come on team let’s burn in hell! Saaaaacrifice a goat!’”

No, Stephen, that’s not the appropriate analogy. It’s not like the Bremerton High School cheerleaders chanting “J-E-S-U-S!” That would probably establish a state religion, the coach praying with some of the players after the game wouldn’t, but it’s not like Colbert is always good at trying to find the proper analogy for this case.

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