Prayer at Government Meetings?

Avatar for cmkristy
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2005
Prayer at Government Meetings?
Mon, 05-20-2013 - 11:24am

WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court agreed Monday to consider whether prayers can be offered at government meetings -- a practice that's been common in Congress and throughout the states for more than two centuries.

The religious expression case, which comes to the court from the town of Greece, N.Y., focuses on the first 10 words of the First Amendment, ratified in 1791: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion."

That Establishment Clause was violated, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last year, when the Greece Town Board repeatedly used Christian clergy to conduct prayers at the start of its public meetings. The decision created a rift with other appeals courts that have upheld prayer at public meetings, prompting the justices to step in.

What do you think? Should prayer be allowed at public meetings?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-17-2012
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 2:03pm

Mass as in church service?  I didn't know that.

It's called the Red Mass.  The Sunday before the Monday opening of SS sessions.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-17-2012
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 2:05pm

It just goes to show how imperfect our leaders are.

Yes, acknowledging and looking for guidance from a "higher authority" does acknowledge our own imperfection.  I prefer humility to arrogance in a leader.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-17-2012
Thu, 05-23-2013 - 2:17pm

I guess you think the U.S. constitution is "liberal stupidity" or politically correct and we should not have to obey the law.

I believe in the US Constitution.  The argument that it's a "living document" is "liberal stupidity"...but if you'll take a moment to actually read it, you won't find "a separation of Church and State" anywhere within it's text.

Would you feel the same if the prayers being offered were non-Christian?

I believe the prayers are non-denominational, and the Chaplain's for Congress can be of any faith, but it's a testament to the beliefs of the majority in this country, as well as it's founding values, principles and beliefs that these things lean decidedly Christian.  I'm sure in India or Pakistan or Iran, they would tend to lean elsewhere.

I bet everybody wouldn't feel so comfortable if people got an Imam who wanted to read from the Koran.

Muslims, as well as almost every other faith, have had prayers read before Congress.  As long as one isn't proselytizing I doubt most tolerant people would object...unless, of course, there are liberal extremists in the audience, but they always object to anything that doesn't adhere to their ideology.

It's only when the majority is imposing it's will on everybody else that people feel that it's no big deal.

So you think the majority of the people should have to bow to the dictates of the few?  Not surprisingly, that is a tenet of liberal ideology.

But it's very clear that government should not be involved in religion.

Having a prayer said before Congress opens it's sessions is not "government being involved in religion."  One cannot separate government from the people elected to govern.  Btw, the concept of "separation of Church and State" was originally intended to keep the government from interfering in freedom of religion, not to keep religion out of government.  It's sad how it's been twisted a minority.