Supremes to Forsyth County: Knock off the prayers

A whiff of good news from the U.S. Supreme Court, which refused to hear an appeal from the Christianists in Forsyth County who have been using public meetings to promote their religion.

We are about to get very busy," said Katherine Parker, the ACLU attorney who argued the case against Forsyth County in the court system. "We have heard from 25 to 30 religious minority individuals in cities and counties all over North Carolina, and we are about to start contacting those (local government) attorneys. We are going to remind them that this is the law, and presume that they will follow the law."

I'm sure Ms. Parker will also be contacting Taliban Thom Tillis, who has allowed public meetings in the legislature to be used as soapboxes for prayer.


Presume they will follow the law?

That seems like an unwise presumption. Just look at the leadership in the General Assembly. Following the law is nowhere near the top of their concerns.

Sad decision.

Apparantly the offending word was "Jesus". If they say a prayer to God, that would have been acceptable.

We are becoming a bland society of sameness.


Sameness is what happens when government gets to decide which religions get official sanction and which are less equal. Nobody is stopping you from praising Jesus all day long. Just don't try imposing it on others by force.

That's not what they were doing.

The city council invited all churches to participate. The city did not officially sanction anything. One local pastor who was invited used the offending word, "Jesus". They were all local churches. If there were a moslem religion in that locality, they would be allowed to invoke mohammed.


Learn to read, Frank.

Although the county's prayer policy was neutral with regard to religion, the court said that under it an overwhelming number of prayers made Christian references.

Now let me think. Whose version of reality am I going to accept as the most accurate one? The version set forth by a brick wall, or the version presented by a federal court?

Such a hard choice.

Could it be cause most of the local churches were Christian?

Which is why I have declared this decision to be sad. We lose the local color and character of the local churches. This is a local town council meeting using local church pastors to lead their prayer with no guidance on how to say that prayer. All in our effort to stamp out uniqueness and make everything bland and the same. Can you read that?


It may help to read the Appeals Court Decision.

The district court’s ruling accords with both Supreme Court precedent and our own. Those cases establish that in order to survive constitutional scrutiny, invocations must consist of the type of nonsectarian prayers that solemnize the legislative task and seek to unite rather than divide. Sectarian prayers must not serve as the gateway to citizen participation in the affairs of local government. To have them do so runs afoul of the promise of public neutrality among faiths that resides at the heart of the First Amendment’s religion clauses.


The governing body in question here is not the "city council" to which Mr. Burns' message refers. The Winston-Salem City Council would never get itself entangled in such a matter. It is the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners that took this case all the way to the Supreme Court. The Board of Commissioners is dominated by conservative Republicans who really do not believe in the separation of church and state, and they maintain their dominance on the Board through gerrymandering.

It is important to make the distinction between "city council" and "county board of commissioners."

Sad response

When we all worship the same state-sponsored deity we become a "bland society of sameness".

I thought the left ....

wants to be like the Europeans? That's what they do.

You're kidding

You didn't "think" at all, Frank. You knee-jerked.

"But I thought the left . . ."

These kinds of remarks always come from people who have no idea what "the left" is and have less idea what "the left" wants.

First, if there is a viable left-leaning party in the United States, I haven't found it. We have a scale of that starts at one ends as moderate, then it's off to right wing, far-right wing, extreme-right wing, and bat-shit-crazy-falling-off-the edge-of-the-flat-earth-right-wing.


No kidding.

Someone here wrote about progressives winning back the General Assembly a few weeks ago. Back? It was like being in a parallel universe.

I think Frank gets most of his thoughts from Neal Boortz

or Rush or others like them. Frank appears to support the policies of, and will likely vote for, people who wouldn't stop to pee in Franks shoes if his feet were on fire. (Can't be late to the polo match, doncha know!) Assuming Frank isn't a member of the 1%, he is either masochistic or a few bricks shy of a full load.

Stan Bozarth

More pleasantries from...

Mr Poison. Got nothing of substance to contribute to the conversation but bile and negativity. You are a case study of intolerance from the left.

I know Frank

I have known Frank for several years and he is a nice guy so lay off the personal attacks. He maybe a little misguided (in my opinion) but I can't say that I have seen him attack anyone here.

Frank has run for public office (I was the campaign manager for the Charlotte City Council member he was trying to defeat)and I see him working at the polls which is more than I can say for a lot of people on this blog. I have had several face to face conversations with him and he tries to get his points across without putting others down.