As far as the nation goes, the U.S. Constitution prohibits Congress from making a law respecting the establishment of religion, or a law prohibiting its free exercise. But as far as society is concerned there is a concerted effort by secularists, using the media, to rid society of religion, in general, as if secular knowledge is a higher kind of knowledge. This means, for example, that the Christmas holiday needs to be put into the trash can of history with other religious holidays. It also means that we should treat religion as unscientific and irrational and those who practice it as crackpots.
Unfortunately, secularists are just as devoted to the ideology of secularism as is the Buddhist, Jew or Christian devoted to their religion. It is not off base to say that there is a cold war going on between secularists and those who practice a particular religion. Just look at the recent efforts of secularists to make it politically incorrect to wish someone a “Merry Christmas,” and politically correct to say, “Happy Holidays,” which doesn’t imply religion.
What the ideological secularists have done, which the U.S. Constitution cannot do, is to make is socially incorrect to practice religion (maybe with the exception of Islam since a number of major universities are helping Islam to find its own ‘safe space’ by which to practice sharia—which is a bit odd I must say).
As the reader of The Zennist knows, I do not like “secular Buddhism.” I look upon those who advocate secular Buddhism as trying to force Buddhism onto a Procrustean bed which ends with a complete distortion of Buddhism simply because the secularists lack an adequate Western analogue for Indian Buddhism.
I hasten to add, I am not sure secularists even understand what religious devotion means or that Buddhism, for example, may not be a religion in the Western sense of the term. Buddhism is, in Indian thought, a “dharma” but now try to define dharma. Western scholars have so far found no adequate Western equal for dharma.
In any event, there is a concerted effort by secularists, using the media, to rid society of religion at least to devalue it.