Explanation of First Amendment Establishment Clause.
The First Amendment begins "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion." Referred to as the Establishment Clause, this provision of the Bill of Rights is sometimes discussed as creating a "wall of separation" between church and state. Issues such as the inclusion of "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance, beginning town meetings with invocations, prayers at public school graduations and football games, and the posting of the Ten Commandments in government buildings have all been raised over the years as Establishment Clause controversies. As opposed to the Free Exercise Clause, which concerns individual religious activity and government limitations thereof, Establishment Clause concerns pertain to government sponsorship, promotion, and/or endorsement of religious activity.