Interesting. I think I'll attend the presentation.
We live in a diverse country, some are theist, others are not. Non-denominational prayers should be offered before public meetings. This way, those who are theist, feel included in the political community. Public prayer has been a tradition practiced since the founding of the country, if the founders who penned the Bill of Rights believed this act contradicted the First Amendment, then surely they would have nipped this practice in the bud, or made a clause for an exception to public prayer.
Rather interesting thing to say Ms. Towler, given that you were one of her critics when Mayor-Elect Warren laid plans to run nine months ago.
Let me start with the actual words of our first amendment of the US Constitution:
"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."
It is clear that this amendment states "Congress" shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion. Has Greece attempted to create a law respecting any specific "establishment" of religion? NO!!!! The amendment goes on to state that "Congress shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech". Thus it would be a violation of our Constitution to stop the Greece board from praying at the meetings - a specific right to free speech.
Now I know there are millions across this country including Mary Anna Towler who choose to make this simple statement of rights a million other meanings. Sorry, I read it simply and with that there is no law broken yet. If the Supreme Court rules against the Town of Greece, then they would create a ruling which is counter to the US Constitution......
One additional note: Mary Anna's reference to Mark's Gospel has been misinterpreted .... Jesus did not want people to "pray in public" in such a way as to gain praise from their peers. Jesus prayed in public as did the apostles. Our founding fathers often prayed in public - often it was to ask for guidance. Somehow today our Progressives and Liberals are doing exactly what Mark's Gospel was suggesting should not be done ..... that is "attempting to tell all that their government is better than God and can offer all we all need on earth" ..... thus telling everyone how great they are ....
A non-sectarian prayer invoking God's blessings and guidance on behalf of the community and its leaders has nothing whatsoever to do with advancing a particular religion. Citizens ought to be profoundly grateful for civic leaders possessed of the wisdom and humility to acknowledge the need for prayer.
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