Skip to comments.ACLU backs Wiccan suit
Posted on 08/10/2005 11:25:50 AM PDT by JZelle
RICHMOND -- Civil liberties lawyers have appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to allow a Wiccan priestess to offer prayers before a public board's meetings. Cynthia Simpson was turned down in 2002 when she asked the Chesterfield Board of Supervisors to add her name to the list of people who customarily open the board's meetings with a religious invocation. The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sided with the suburban Richmond county. In their petition, received by the court yesterday, American Civil Liberties Union lawyers accuse the federal appeals court of trying to "obscure with legal smoke and mirrors" Chesterfield's preference for mainline religions. "Although Establishment Clause jurisprudence may be beset with conflicting tests, uncertain outcomes and ongoing debate, one principle has never been compromised ... that one religious denomination cannot be officially preferred over another," ACLU attorneys wrote in their 13-page filing. County officials said they had the right to limit the prayers to Judeo-Christian beliefs and religions based on a single god.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com ...
You don't answer my question, so let me try again under a different way.
Our Constitution provides for the freedom of religion. I like that.
If Christians get to say Christian prayers at a public meeting, why can't another religion?
I don't agree with that, since it's a blatant government establishment of religion. However the county should be able to limit the people who offer prayers at the board meetings to representatives of religions that have a significant number of adherents in the county, or at least limit the frequency of their participation to something proportional to the % of the county population which belongs to that religion. Per the standard given by the county officials, a Wahabbi Muslim would be welcome to give the prayer, but not a Wiccan -- even though I strongly suspect (hope) that there are more Wiccans than Wahhabi Muslims in the Richmond area.
So which do you want? Religious activity at public meetings? Or no religious activity at public meetings? You can't have your cake and eat it too!
"You are a complete idiot if you need to do debate the wisdom in allowing wiccan prayer in our government."
Why don't you tell me why it would be a problem?
The Wiccan moral code is based on reciprocity, an issue also covered on the temple mount.
P.S. I am not Wiccan or Christian
Are you saying that Bubba's House of Ta-Ta's down the street from me is actually a type of church? LOL
Because they weren't invited.
I feel the need to debate the provisions in the Constitution.
If you want to allow prayer in government, then where in the Constitution does it allow you to deny any religion the right to have their prayer included?
Why do they need a prayer to open the ceremony at all?
Probably an ironic statment to make but . . . AMEN!
Damn, you're a brave man to put out such a logical idea on here! LOL
" And don't forget, the ACLU is also litigating in favor of using the Koran in court."
Isn't the whole point of swearing on the Bible supposed to make you fear not telling the truth? If you don't accept the Bible as being true, swearing on it means nothing. I would rather have a Muslim swear on the Koran, at least it would hold significance for him and maybe prompt him to tell the truth.
The prayers are said on behalf of the legislators, assemblymen, or whatever term is appropriate for the body being assembled. Rabbis are often called to give such a prayer, so there goes the "Christian-only" element of that debate.
If any official member of the body wants to identify themselves as a Wiccan, then Wiccan prayers might be appropriate. Until then, they really aren't, are they?
I'mn pretty big on original intent. We can surmise what the founding fathers thought of witchcraft. Calling that coven of quackery a religion is an insult to not only Christians, but all time-honored and God-respecting religions. But have it your way - witches prayers to Satan, pot and porn. Hey it's the libertarian way!
So the stifling of religious expression of people that happen to hold public office is logical? Abolishing group prayer by elected representatives is logical?
"If Christians get to say Christian prayers at a public meeting, why can't another religion?"
First of all, Wiccans are not a religious sect. They are a bunch of sexually confused, birkenstock wearing, henna tattoo getting, patchouli-scented, Cherry Garcia eating, tree-hugging losers, who think that if they wear enough black and say the right incantations, the lord of darkness will appear and get them a date. That is why you never see blond cheerleader types going for the occult.
Second, fine if they want to say their little prayers to some goddess or a fern or whatever, let them. However you'd have to give the opportunity to every mental patient and crackpot out there.
I kind of like the moment of silence.
It's better than no religion in public.
And it's better than being forced to sit through a prayer from a religion that's not a Christian prayer.
To those who hate religion as well as all people of faith, not only is it logical to them but they consider it a higher form of "Freedom of Religion."
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