When the news that some members of the Trump administration are participating in a Bible study group, the matter was thought to be unremarkable. However, according to the Washington Times, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, an atheist group, is decrying the practice. In the view of the atheists, government officials studying and discussing the Bible is “disturbing, scary and maybe even an illegal use of taxpayer funds.”

What is the objection of the atheists to Bible study in the White House?

Atheist groups such as the Freedom From Religion Foundation have used the courts to restrict religious practices in the public square since the early 1960s.

The famous Supreme Court case brought by Madalyn Murray O'Hair that ended the practice of prayer in public schools is a classic example. O’Hair even sued NASA over the reading from Genesis during the flight of Apollo 8, which compelled Buzz Aldrin to take communion on the lunar surface quiet. More recent cases involve everything from Christmas displays to monuments to the Ten Commandments on public land.

The Freedom From Religious Foundation, perhaps a little clueless about how it is publicly perceived, went further and claimed that the Bible condones everything from child sacrifice to slavery to the subjugation of women and that the Trump administration should not be exposed to such a book.

On the other hand, Christians especially will counter that the Bible promotes peace, good will, and forgiving one’s enemies, concepts that everyone, especially the current president, ought to be exposed to. In any case, the rhetoric suggests that some kind of law suit is coming, which President Trump will undoubtedly use to his political advantage.

Attitudes toward religion Trump vs. Obama

One of the reasons why people of faith have flocked to Trump’s support is that they have felt disrespected and discriminated against by the previous president. From attempting to force Little Sisters of the Poor to provide birth control services to compelling bakers and florists to participate in same-sex weddings, believers detected a distinct hostility toward religious faith from the Obama administration.

To be sure, Donald Trump is, to put the matter mildly, an unlikely champion of religious faith. His lifestyle as a businessman and media personality could hardly be described as godly. However, he peppers his speeches with appeals to religious faith, and some of his evangelical allies have detected a spiritual awakening in the president. On a more practical, political level, the Trump administration has taken a friendlier stance toward the religious community. Atheists who do not like it should do the math. Roughly 85 percent of the American people believe in some kind of supreme being while atheists constitute just seven percent of Americans. Atheists could do well to curb their militant tendencies that seem to echo the worst excesses of religious zealots.