Supreme Court shouldn't grant blank check for public prayer

  • Article
  • Updated: August 21, 2013 - 12:40 PM

In what could be its most significant church-state case in decades, the Supreme Court will decide whether official prayers at government meetings that overwhelmingly favor one religion violate the First Amendment. Although the case involves a town in New York, not the federal government, the Obama administration has filed a “friend of the court” brief that is distinctly unfriendly to the separation of church and state.

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jarlmnAug. 21, 13 1:16 PM

However "ecumenical" or whatever a prayer, it is *still* a prayer ... and done OFFICIALLY in public, it is a defacto religious rite. No way around it. Thus, prayer has NO legitimate place in government processes. And no, this is not a "war on Christianity." It is a stand against the cultural stranglehold Christianity holds over a supposedly secular society. So kindly spare us the howls of supposed "persecution." Christians, long, long, long away from being fed to lions, now somehow imagine they are being oppressed whenever someone has the utter temerity to even mildly question the hegemony they have over society. Separation of Church and State!

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allhailfsmAug. 21, 13 1:26 PM

No public prayers should ever be held in public gatherings unless they are silent and the content is up to each individuals conscience. I cannot imagine why anyone, be they christian, muslim or jewish, would want the State deciding how they should pray!

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scubadoo68Aug. 21, 13 1:47 PM

To reduce waste and decrease government, do away with the prayer. Leave that to each individual religious institution.

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omakristyAug. 21, 13 2:15 PM

As a person of faith, who happens to be a practicing Lutheran, I whole-heartedly agree that prayer has no place at a city council meeting, a school board meeting or other public meetings. There is no war on Christianity. We may hope that the participants and leaders involved in whatever endeavor is at hand behave with integrity, ethics and wisdom. We may pray for those qualities on our own time. But it isn't appropriate to ask for those qualities or hopes in public prayer, forcing others to join us in the practice. I mean it.

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petefanortnyAug. 21, 13 2:37 PM

No where in the Constitution do the words "separation of church and state" appear. It was never meant to be. In God We Trust. One Nation Under God.

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jimjimjimjimAug. 21, 13 2:42 PM

One more time: No where in the Constitution do the words "separation of church and state" appear. Why don't people just read and follow the Constitution?

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thorc1Aug. 21, 13 2:56 PM

Pete and Jim -- straight from the constitution's 1st Amendment: "the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion." That means the government endorsing a particular religion. I think saying a prayer that lifts up beliefs of a specific religion crosses that line.

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tituspulloAug. 21, 13 2:59 PM

petefanortnyAug. 21, 13 2:37 PM No where in the Constitution do the words "separation of church and state" appear. It was never meant to be. In God We Trust. One Nation Under God.___________Uhhh, neither does that phrase. It didn't appear on money until the late 1860's. There is nothing in the Constitution that says this country is a Christian theocracy.

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braxozAug. 21, 13 3:13 PM

petefanortny Aug. 21, 13 2:37 PM No where in the Constitution do the words "separation of church and state" appear. It was never meant to be. In God We Trust. One Nation Under God.__________ "Under God" was put into the Pledge of Allegiance in the 1950's as a show against "godless communism" the main push was from the Knights of Columbus. The original was written by a Baptist minister who made no reference to God. "In God We Trust" became the official motto of the U.S. in 1956, again to tell us apart from the Soviet Union's atheists. I guess these pass muster because they doesn't specify which God you are under or trusting.

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dhenkelsAug. 21, 13 3:21 PM

No, the words "separation of church and state" do not reside. These are the exact words from the first amemendment, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." - In case you don't understand it, it means the government is not allowed to put one religion above another. If it were to allow a prayer that is dominated by any religious sect (or no sect for someone that might be atheist) it is violating that section of the constitution. If you want to overturn the first amendment, think long and hard, that also allows you the freedom to state your opinion on this. You can't have it all ways.

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