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My tax dollars at work against me

Hundreds in Warren and across region join Christian prayer day ... Warren's National Day of Prayer service was right on the grounds of Warren city hall, with the mayor playing a prominent speaking part. If that doesn't say something about the state of the principle of "separation of church and state" in this country, nothing does.

According to the article, no non-Christian religious leaders were allowed to take part. The worst aspect to it, as far as I can tell, was what one minister said during the service:
"We pray that you would restore the ability to proudly call ourselves a Christian nation," Rev. Terry Frazier, pastor of Liberty Foursquare Church in Warren, told the Warren crowd. "Restore the ability for Bibles to be used in our classroom again. Restore the pride in having Scriptures displayed on our nation's building without fear. ... And may our nation declare that Jesus Christ is Lord."
Later, there is a quote from another minister who prays that the U.S. become "not just be an arsenal of democracy, but an arsenal of theocracy."

Once again, they're using my tax dollars (property taxes, in this case) to indirectly support government resources to support establishment of religion, an establishment to which only fundamentalist Christians need apply. Despite all the court rulings against this sort of thing, it simply does not stop in this country. It's not enough that believers can pray in their churches and private spaces. The idea of "render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's; render unto God that which is God's" apparently does not occur to them.

Edited to add (11:00 a.m.): 200 join National Day of Prayer service: Conservative issues, change are pushed: This is the event held in front of the Jefferson County Courthouse in Louisville, Kentucky, in the shadow of a statue of Thomas Jefferson. Y'know, the guy who articulated the separation of church and state thing. It's as if they mock you, Mr. Jefferson.

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( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
ferndalealex
May. 8th, 2009 03:17 pm (UTC)
I don't think Ferndale did anything. Are you writing a letter to the Mayor & City Council?

Because the National Day Of Prayer Task Force is related to Focus on the Family (it's run by Shirley Dobson wife of FOF founder...) I keep pushing the idea that it is an opportunity and a challenge for folks of other more open traditions to set up alternative events.

songdogmi
May. 8th, 2009 06:26 pm (UTC)
I'm thinking about writing a letter to the city. The thing that I've realized is, the Free Press article was brief and may have omitted some details on who spoke; it seemed to show all radical Christian fundamentalists, except for a quote from the mayor that seemed moderate. I want to know for a fact whether there were any other moderate Christian speakers, or any representation from Jewish, Muslim, or other faiths, before I confront the city on it.

As for alternatives.... see my next post. (May take a while to post it, fyi.)
ferndalealex
May. 8th, 2009 06:52 pm (UTC)
They probably portrayed it accurately. The NDPTF is a conservative christian organization. They state, explicitly, that they were created for the expressed purpose of organizing and promoting prayer observances conforming to a Judeo-Christian system of values. People with other theological and philosophical views are, of course, free to organize and participate in activities that are consistent with their own beliefs.

I suppose it just depends on who actually organized the event: Warren or a local chapter of the NDPTF.
hellmutt
May. 9th, 2009 09:48 pm (UTC)
:( :( :( :( :(
songdogmi
May. 9th, 2009 10:31 pm (UTC)
Yeah. People can pray their brains out, I don't care. Just don't make me hear it or pay for it. Although I fear that's a lost cause here.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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