Ryan: Prayer In Public Schools Is A State Issue

-Submitted by David Drumm (Nal), Guest Blogger

Paul Ryan, Republican nominee for Vice President, said he believes that states should have the right to determine if prayer in public schools is allowed. In response to a question from a campaign volunteer, Ryan said that’s “a constitutional issue of the states.” Prayer in public schools is a hot-button issue for religious conservatives. Was Ryan simply pandering to the Republican base or does he truly not support the separation of church and state?

While any student can silently pray during school, that’s not the kind of prayer that the religious right is talking about. They want the kind of prayer that is foisted upon young minds by school authority figures. Those in the classroom are a captive audience, compelled by law to attend.

In the case of Engel v. Vitale (1962), the Supreme Court found that a New York state law, directing a School District’s principal to cause a prayer to be said aloud by each class in the presence of a teacher, was “wholly inconsistent with the Establishment Clause.” The Court noted that the First Amendment was “made applicable to the State of New York by the Fourteenth Amendment of the said Constitution.”

Ryan goes on to say that the decision to say a prayer is the “moral responsibility of parents.” However, a government sponsored prayer violates the very parental responsibility he claims to support. The decision not to say a prayer is also the responsibility of parents. A child should neither be pressured to pray nor pressured not to pray. Religious parents would scream bloody murder if their child was pressured not to pray, but these same parents have no qualms when pressuring other children to pray.

Government sponsored prayer in public schools is a blatant attempt to refresh and reinforce religious beliefs of  the children of religious parents and indoctrinate the children of parents who have different beliefs.

H/T: Steve M., New York Times, Americans United.

131 thoughts on “Ryan: Prayer In Public Schools Is A State Issue

  1. Government sponsored prayer in public schools is a blatant attempt to refresh and reinforce religious beliefs of the children of religious parents and indoctrinate the children of parents who have different beliefs.”

    Indeed.

    Blasphemy prosecutions by the state would not be too far behind.

  2. most aspects of education would probably be better handled by the State instead of the Federal government.

    However the states are still beholden to the constitution which precludes the recognition of one religion over another. So unless they plan on having 195,853,788,001,821 different prayers for every possible belief and a moment of silence for atheist than it is a moot point on whether prayers in school are handled by the feds or the state.

  3. BTW – Jeff. We lived in Floriduh (Brevard County – I was a rocket scientist) for a few years and I can tell you there is no way on earth they should be allowed to handle their own schools. They, along with the contingent of backward third-world wannabe states are a drag on our nation because they fail to produce well educated citizens and have demonstrated a lack of concern for decades.

    When we moved (in large part because of the crappy education I didn’t want my kids to suffer through) Florida had the lowest graduation rate in the country, the lowest rate of HS grads continuing on to any higher education and 50% of all Florida HS grads, public and private, needed remedial English and Math classes in college.

    In the face of threats to the future of the nation like this it would be criminal for the nation not to act. Its sad that we have to pay to try to drag these handful of states into the 20th Century but the alternative would be more expensive.

  4. Raff,

    If I recall peer pressure is or was a factor in allowing prayer in school….. Just call me one of those folks that’s doesn’t do it just because others do it…..

    Raff also the EC only apples to those states in insurrection…… It’s perfectly legal in I think deleware……..according to the states Constitution……

    Good article David….

  5. Reopening the “prayer in the schools” issue is going to be a huge waste of the taxpayers’ money, and the Dems would be well advised to advertise that right NOW with some ads designed by the GEICO gecko.

    First off, every state legislature will have to deal with it. $$$

    Then legislatures that pass prayer in the school will get a bid from the
    Transcendental Meditation folks to put in TM as well. More $$$

    Then WHICH PRAYER will take up a few of the States’ Supreme Courts for a few years. Remember the “our father”? Some of us were pretty surprised to find out that it was just a translation of the Roman Catholic “Pater Noster” and there were plenty of Protestants who thought that should be replaced and of course, the Jewish Lobby (remember the most powerful lobby in the world?) would weigh in for the vee-ah-havtah in a quick minute, think of how many Philadelphia Lawyers that would have to pay for! The Muslims will want FIVE prayers per day and little carpets.

    And then of course you have some organizations come in to change the words. “Our mother who art in Heaven, thy sacred-goddessness gave birth to all of us, even those of us who stubbornly refuse to drop their heads in awe and who pee standing up,”

    And then the states will have to have commissions go back to the original and retranslate…imagine…maybe it really DID SAY:

    Our Father who art in Heaven,
    Halloween thy name.
    Thy King Kong, thy will be done,
    on earth as it is in Heaven.
    Give us this day our daily bread
    and forgive us our tresspassors
    as we forgive those who tresspass against us.
    And lead us not into Penn Station,
    but deliver us from evil,
    for thine is the Kingdom, and the Power, and the Glory,
    Forever,
    Amen.

    That’s what the kids said every morning when I went to school. And a lot of them turned out pretty damn near as good as me! :mrgreen:

  6. rafflaw 1, September 8, 2012 at 9:55 am

    Well said David. Wasn’t Slavery a States issue as well??
    ——————

    Yes. The southern states, led by South Carolina, seceded b/c the northern states were invoking states’ rights in not returning runaway human “property” to their owners in the south. btw, this was only reason the states seceded. The SC declaration of secession is available on the web.

    Prayer was done in my elementary classroom. I’m not sure if my classmates thought I was too stupid to learn the prayer or to contrary to say it. In any case, it was just one more thing that alienated me from my classmates.

  7. Hey what’s this with the losing ticket choosing a vice pres candidate who looks like a cartoon character, anyway? Remember Lieberman (the Grinch) — and now Ryan (Eddie Munster). Who thinks of these things?

  8. Ryan is pandering.

    BTW, the following is a passage my entire 8th grade, public school class repeated every morning in homeroom:

    “May the words of my mouth, and the meditations of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer. Amen” (Psalm 19:14)

    I can still rattle it off without a thought

  9. Romney’s dog says a prayer very day that he will not be put in the crate and strapped to the top of the station wagon and driven cross country to the Great State of Utah where Mormonism flourishes. We need Dog Rights in our state and federal constitution. Puke on The Romani Willard and The Big Eared Mick.

  10. I wish the Republican Party would just simply walk away from the abortion issue, stop pandering to the pro-religion cause, and become the party to clean up the environment. I feel if they accepted these three causes they would do much better in the elections.

  11. There was a case in Detroit a few years ago when the Muslim population wanted to call to prayer over the city loud speakers. It wasn’t allowed.

    In all fairness, don’t ring the church bells either. It’s supposed to be a democracy.

  12. Matt, apples and oranges. Church bells belong to the church. They can ring them anytime the noise codes rules allow. The city loud speakers belong to the government which can’t promote one religion over another.

  13. We were “allowed” to say the pledge of allegiance. Don’t know how many became terrorists.

    Don’t know where I learned the Lord’s Prayer. It must have been some girl who taught me when she was on top and wanted me to hold off.

    Some news, a guy said he was a “red diaper” baby. Anyone know what that means?

    When you are on your knees praying, it is a lot easier to fart. All who agree say Amen. The neys can get on their knees and abstain, if they can.

  14. bettykath 1, September 8, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Matt, apples and oranges. Church bells belong to the church. They can ring them anytime the noise codes rules allow. The city loud speakers belong to the government which can’t promote one religion over another.
    =========================================================
    What if the Muslims have their own loud speakers? Can they make they same argument?

  15. idealist707 1, September 8, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    We were “allowed” to say the pledge of allegiance. Don’t know how many became terrorists.

    Don’t know where I learned the Lord’s Prayer. It must have been some girl who taught me when she was on top and wanted me to hold off.

    Some news, a guy said he was a “red diaper” baby. Anyone know what that means?

    When you are on your knees praying, it is a lot easier to fart. All who agree say Amen. The neys can get on their knees and abstain, if they can.
    ======================================================
    In elementary school, every morning you crossed you heart and said the pledge of allegiance. Little kids. I didn’t have a problem with it, but do you know what happened to the ones who refused? Recess time.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_diaper_baby

    This isn’t red diaper territory.

  16. Blouise, later in that same psalm, you can read:

    May my lips be free from speaking falsehood, and to my enemies, may I be as silent as the dust…

    It is now incorporated in a Saturday afternoon Amidah (“a thoughtful meditative prayer, optional”) in the “Sim Shalom” prayer book for reformed Jews at the Sabbath Service. I always thought the line “to my enemies, may I be silent as the dust” was a good thought, especially for people who must become litigants in this insane court system, against their will.

    I went to school before you did.

  17. Thank you for using that most ‘adorable’ picture of Paul Ryan. Every time I see one of him like it I feel nauseous. He looks like an innocent altar boy.

  18. Matthew 6 >> 1Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.

    2Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 3But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: 4That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.

    5And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 6But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

    7But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. 8Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
    King James Version.
    Prayer is a state of mind. That means prayer can be anywhere with whoever not even knowing it.

  19. Elsie DL 1, September 8, 2012 at 12:54 pm

    Thank you for using that most ‘adorable’ picture of Paul Ryan. Every time I see one of him like it I feel nauseous. He looks like an innocent altar boy.
    ==========================================================
    He isn’t an innocent alter boy. Perhaps you should hit him on the knuckles with a stick.

  20. Protestant agnostic. I would say the same, but at what póint were you protestant?

    I never was. My mom said go with the evangelic neighbors and try it. Motherly duty. I dropped out after two Sundays. The father chewed SenSen. Yech!
    Wonder if he drank?

  21. Matt,

    “What if the Muslims have their own loud speakers? Can they make they same argument?”

    If churches can call their faithful with bells, I see no reason Muslims couldn’t call their faithful with their own loud speakers under the same noise rules.

    The church across the road used to ring its bell every Sunday a couple of pastors ago. The bell ringer was a energic pre-teen, then teen. Newest pastor doesn’t bother. His oldest is only 5 or 6. If they stick around I may hear the bell again in 8-10 years, or not. A church in the city has a contraption that plays bell-like music. It’s just loud noise up close but quite nice a couple of blocks away.

  22. idealist707 1, September 8, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    Protestant agnostic. I would say the same, but at what póint were you protestant?

    I never was. My mom said go with the evangelic neighbors and try it. Motherly duty. I dropped out after two Sundays. The father chewed SenSen. Yech!
    Wonder if he drank?
    =================
    I was born Protestant. I only went to church when my maternal grandmother forced me to.

    I drink whatever I want.

  23. bettykath 1, September 8, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    Matt,

    “What if the Muslims have their own loud speakers? Can they make they same argument?”

    If churches can call their faithful with bells, I see no reason Muslims couldn’t call their faithful with their own loud speakers under the same noise rules.

    The church across the road used to ring its bell every Sunday a couple of pastors ago. The bell ringer was a energic pre-teen, then teen. Newest pastor doesn’t bother. His oldest is only 5 or 6. If they stick around I may hear the bell again in 8-10 years, or not. A church in the city has a contraption that plays bell-like music. It’s just loud noise up close but quite nice a couple of blocks away.
    ========================
    The Muslims don’t get to call prayer three times a day in the United States. Freedom of speech and religion being what it is.

  24. Malisha, interesting video.

    It seems the Muslims are joining various Christian sects in looking for converts. Missionaries go all over the world looking for converts, frequently volunteering to teach school. Some have come to my door.

    I applaud the school for giving the students the opportunity to visit the mosque. It was unwise for the boys to be invited to pray. The school should make sure it doesn’t happen again. If the boys want to pray to allah, they can return on their own.

  25. rafflaw 1, September 8, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    I forgto to add that if you want your child to be able to pray at school, send him to a priviate or parochial school.
    =============================
    No prayer at school.

  26. Poor Paul, he was born with a dead brain up his arse. First he lied about his running a marathon under 3 hours- a great feat if it were correct, As an ex- marathon runner, I know all my times.

    Then he did not tell his clappers (the word not being used figuratively), that he voted NO on Simpson-Bowles and blamed Obama for not doing anything. Had he voted YES, it would be under implementation. It only needed one vote which belonged to Paul Ryan- the man who loves men in long frocks. He also lied about the $760billion that Obama “stole” from Medicare without mentioning that he had the same in his own bill which would come out from the beneficiaries, unlike Obama’s which would come out from the providers.

    Now, he wants prayer in public schools. LOL. It is hillarious indeed.

    He wants his Christian ilk to learn at their young ages, how to bribe because that is what prayer stands for.

  27. Teji Malik 1, September 8, 2012 at 2:42 pm

    He wants his Christian ilk to learn at their young ages, how to bribe because that is what prayer stands for.
    ==============================
    Is that what everybody stands for? I won’t put my head on the floor, and I won’t stand on my knees.

    Religion is a cult. It really doesn’t mean anything.

  28. Darren Smith: “I wish the Republican Party would just simply walk away from the abortion issue, stop pandering to the pro-religion cause, and become the party to clean up the environment. I feel if they accepted these three causes they would do much better in the elections.”

    Darren, That is the Republican Party now. They have remade themselves. They can’t walk away from who they are.

  29. Matt,
    LOL for lots you write. It was not the drinkin’,it was the Sen-Sen he chewed. Do you even know what it is? And don’t go peeking in Wikipedia this time, that’s cheating.

  30. BettyKath,

    “It was unwise for the boys to be invited to pray. The school should make sure it doesn’t happen again. If the boys want to pray to allah, they can return on their own.”

    You can watch people have sex, but if you feel any urges, then take care of it at home. Where does the line go between appreciation, education, experiencing, hands on exercise.

    Of course you are correct that this is extremely divisive subject. Are they allowed to have a mosque so near our schools. What if our kids should go in and be converted. The Horror, the horror.

  31. PS to BK,

    I’ll betcha if they had visited a RCC or evangelical church, that they would have been offered to pray with the priest/minister.

    Personally I’m all for living. Even the dangerous kind

  32. idealist707 1, September 8, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    Matt,
    LOL for lots you write. It was not the drinkin’,it was the Sen-Sen he chewed. Do you even know what it is? And don’t go peeking in Wikipedia this time, that’s cheating.
    =============
    I don’t need to peek into Wikipedia and that’s not cheating, it’s called research. I don’t know what Sen_Sen is. Do your own Wikipedia research.

  33. Of course you are correct that this is extremely divisive subject. Are they allowed to have a mosque so near our schools. What if our kids should go in and be converted. The Horror, the horror.
    ====================================
    The problem is if you have an American who converts and becomes a traitor. That’s a problem.

  34. Matt,

    Hope you are not serious about converts/traitors. Any risk? Some do, sure. Some guys go nuts and do other things. That is why we have cops,etc. The guy in Yemen was one. And he got his, sadly his son did too.

    But as the guys in the helicopter said about the guy in his van with his kids who they shot up because
    he stopped the van and tried to help a wounded guy.

    They said, “shouldn’t have your kids here”. As though when he was taking his daughters to grandma’s he knew that he would find a victim wounded by a ‘copter.

    Of course the comparison is not correct. The guy in Yemen knew he was a hunted man.

    I asked not for research but to see if anyone had personal knowledge of what it meant.

    And Sen-Sen was a common bad breath coverup in the ’50s.

  35. Hi Matt,
    I think you may have missed the irony in my comment. When you get to know me better, you will realize that I am a recovering Catholic and that I find reading anything about Catholicism torturous. Let me redefine this: I truly and honestly dislike the leaders of the Catholic church. As one of my Kindergarten girls once told a boy in class who was trying to bully her with a lecture: “You are not the boss of me.” As a matter of fact, neither is any other man, religious or not! Cheers!

  36. Matt,

    Thanks for the link. Should spend more time at Wiki’sa and less here.
    I’ve heard that Salk who made the polio vaccine did his testing unethically (alleged) in Africa.

  37. Elsie,

    I have only been in a Catholic church once, when my youngest sister got married. I told the Father that he did a good job, but he just passed it off.

    There is no crying in baseball.

  38. James in LA
    1, September 8, 2012 at 10:19 am
    Does Paul Ryan understand he has been set up to take all the blame?
    =========================================================

    that’s pretty much the job description for vice pres

  39. I still do not understand what the big deal is when it comes to prayer in public schools. I do understand that people that are atheist or agnostic or of a religion that frowns upon praying with others not associated with their religion would feel alienated by public school prayer. But this whole concept of separation of church and state to ban prayer in public schools is a modern construction. Why were public schools allowed to require prayer before the 1960s. Didn’t they know about the separation of church and state then?

  40. Dan,
    Why were black people forced to use separate bathrooms and drinking fountains, and ride in special sections in public conveyances, in the South, before the 1960s? White supremacy.
    Why were prayers allowed in public schools before the 1960s? Deist, usually Christian, supremacy.
    It’s disregard of human rights by the majority, in both cases.

  41. Dan,

    Why weren’t women allowed to vote? Why were black people not allowed to sit in front of the bus?

    In case you do not know, this is NOT a Christian nation nor a nation built on any other particular religion just in case if you have been brainwashed by some one-eyed King in your blind ilk.

    As mentioned in the other post by me, a prayer has no place anywhere. It is meaningless, full of me-ism and a blatant bribery to which ever deity you may worship.

  42. Dan,

    Public schools are government institutions and are not allowed by the Constitution to promote one religion over another.

    Any prayer is bias for one religion and against others. Prayer in and of itself is a bias against those who don’t pray. Prayer conducted by an agent of the state, the teacher, is unconstitutional.

    No one has suggested that students can’t say a silent prayer whenever they feel the need.

    There was a big push in the 1950s to put in God in the government. This is when the motto In God We Trust was adopted and put on money. It’s when “under God” was added to the pledge of allegiance. I believe it’s also when the Lord’s prayer was added to the morning rituals in the schools.

  43. If the prayer is so important, why don’t local pastors come to the public sidewalk by the schools to lead kids in prayer who’s parents want them to? How come I never see that? If fact, many schools have a church very nearby, they could meet there before school for prayer…again why is that not happening? I think most of us know the answer.

  44. “Was Ryan simply pandering to the Republican base or does he truly not support the separation of church and state?”

    Separation of church and state has been successfully turned upside down by the anti-God anti Church secular humanists and leftists. The phrase actually isn’t even found in the Constitution.

    The original intention was to keep the government out of the affairs of the church. As evidenced by the phrase “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” Therefore it would be a state issue.

    The special interest groups have been able to actually turn the original intent upside down and suggest that the meaning is to control the church by the government, systematically removing any form of religion in the public arena. To a degree where schools are taking off “Christmas Holiday” from their calendars and using a more politically correct “Winter Break” or something else. Never mind that “CHRISTMAS” is a FEDERAL HOLIDAY. Nevertheless, school systems, citing they don’t have money to fight the ACLU, bend over and grab a jar of Vaseline and change to appease the whims of the ACLU and their ilk.

  45. Dan,

    The root cause of the whole problem is that people would be reminded of personal responsibility if God is recognized and that things actually matter. Take God out of the equation, and then there isn’t any personal responsibility and there isn’t anything considered higher than the state and federal government. Likewise, there wouldn’t be any consequences for wrongdoings.

  46. Hubert,
    I thank your parents who gave you that name. Well chosen, and you confirm it with every word you write.

    So you think we need a god to develop a guiding feeling of personal responsibility.

    Some one who believes that is beyond the reach of arguments. Untouhable.

    Personal responsibility is a human trait selected by millenia of evolutional development and environmental selection of the best development. The trait of personal responsibility seems to be favorable to survival in our societies.

    God has nothing demonstrably to do with the matter.

  47. For All,

    Evolution is random mutation which supplies development of new characteristics. Life and our environment being what they are, most development do not lead to increased viability or reproduction.

    Devolution does not mean acquiring bad characteristics, but rather the production of fewer new characteristics to be tested for viability changes.

    So says the amateur scientist.

  48. BettyKath,

    Sen-sen? Not in Sweden. You seem to have smelled it.
    I did not know the name of the odor, but found it abominable anyway. How old were you and in what circumstances was it encountered?

  49. Hubert,
    Your claim that leftists have turned the Establishment clause on its head is bogus. The mixing of religion into politics is what threatens your religion and mine, if our choice of faith is not the chosen faith by those in power.

  50. Which prayers does he want in the schools? Hebrew, Muslim, Christian, Moron? If he allows one type of prayer then he should allow all types of prayer. What about the agnostic or atheist non believer? He is opening a big can of worms. Prayer belongs with the individual privately and has no place in the school system, or any other public place. I refused a job offer because they had a prayer meeting every morning.

  51. This is just one more of our Civil Rights violation of freedom of religion. My son is involved in a horrific fight with a Federal Judge, his cronies
    ( fraudulent stream of lawyers, and other officers of the court). My son if literately fighting for his life after the Judge orders prohibited him from hiring an attorney but assigning an unpaid attorney who has no experience in such cases. The judge has ordered my son to be under a receivership who is stealing his money literally instead of following the responsibility fo a receivership to protect assets. Conducting Ex Pate meetings to conspire against my son. No Due Process has occurred in this case which has been going on for several years. The judge in open court told my son that he would do what it takes to clean him out of all assets. We have gone to Congress but they are “too busy attending summits”, we have gone to the FBI but there his retaliation for this in the court. We don’t know where to turn. Check out the YouTube video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aSqJLFksZ1I&feature=plcp and a story from the Washington Examiner: http://washingtonexaminer.com/federal-judge-puts-internet-pioneer-in-civil-lockdown/article/272761#.UEy8jJaVrLc

  52. Suzzie Greenberg 1, September 9, 2012 at 11:58 am

    The judges, both state and federal, didn’t like it that I was representing myself. The AJ said “didn’t I tell you to not come in here without a lawyer?” I said no, you said you knew I was representing myself. According to their handbook,they give deference to pro-se appellants, but that really isn’t the case. They might want to reconsider their approach. Or learn to be a mechanic.

  53. Hubert,
    Osteichthyes like you should not go swimming in a barrel. You’re too easy a target.

    I love your invoking of the old weasel phrase “special interest groups,” and your use of the enraged-reactionary-letter-to-the-editor standbys, “of their ilk,” and “secular humanists.”
    “Never mind that “CHRISTMAS” is a FEDERAL HOLIDAY.”
    Did you find that in the Constitution, Hubert?
    How many times is the word “God” used in the Constitution? Is that a coincidence? They forgot to mention it, perhaps? What a glaring omission!

    “The original intention” of the Founders was that only male landowners vote. They were often slaveholders.

    Slavery was sanctioned by the Constitution. You know, the part of the Constitution that wasn’t read at the convening of the Teabilly House of Representatives?

    What was the “original intent” on internet freedoms? Airports? Electrical utilities? Rapid-fire, large-capacity ammunition clip, assault rifles?

    Is it time to stop referring to original intent, yet?

  54. If you are all for prayer in school, would you feel comfortable with all the different versions of prayer, including at least two to three prayer times during school hours by students of the Muslim faith? Do atheists like me get recess each time during the time students pray?
    As a long-time teacher I must say that I don’t know how I’d fit all that prayer time into an already full curriculum.
    Will I, as an atheist teacher, be required to supervise students during their prayer time? Do the atheist students get to go out and play soccer with me instead?

    And as for your idea that responsibility derives from having God in one’s life, you can’t be serious! All I have to do is look around the globe where religious people, the ones who you claim take responsibility for their actions, are killing one another in non-stop fashion. To blame it on the ‘left’ is laughable.

  55. Hubert

    “The root cause of the whole problem is that people would be reminded of personal responsibility if God is recognized and that things actually matter. Take God out of the equation, and then there isn’t any personal responsibility and there isn’t anything considered higher than the state and federal government. Likewise, there wouldn’t be any consequences for wrongdoings.”

    This is so counter to my experience. The folks I know who have God on the tip of their tongue morning til night and who pray for all things are the ones who put all responsibility for everything that happens on God. They have no power or responsibility. It’s all God’s doing. George Zimmerman claims that when he killed unarmed student Trayvon Martin that it was all God’s plan, George had no power to not kill him.

    What does God do to me if I hit another person? Nothing. But the other person just might hit me back harder. Doesn’t take long for me to learn that it’s not a good idea to hit others. Or is it your contention that it was God who is responsible for sending millions of young people to war?

  56. It’s embarrassing that anybody wants prayer in public schools, much less a public official or someone running for office. Don’t parents have the right to wake the kids up five minutes earlier in the morning to pray with them?

    Dear Originator of all No-Brainers,
    Help us, your people, to rise above the inconsiderable.
    Amen.

  57. “Take God out of the equation, and then there isn’t any personal responsibility …” (Hubert Cumberdale)

    Angry white male speaks with forked pen.

  58. As a Jewish boy growing up in the 50’s and going to an elementary school that was at least 50% Jewish, the forced Christian prayers at assemblies and the forced celebrations of Christmas and Easter were distressing to me. I thought we had settled the issue via SCOTUS in the 60’s. However, the Fundy Right wants to revisit the issue via States Rights. From the same folks who brought us Jim Crow. Ryan is little more than a sociopathic whore.

  59. Since they have not let my original post out of moderation and in light of Dan’s ignorance of American history (the separation of church and state was a key for the founders because the religious wars in the Colonies and those still ongoing in Europe were very much on the founders minds) I am going to try posting it below slightly editied to see if it will get through

  60. Mike, don’t be mean to whores. They actually work for a living and provide a service. Comparing Ryan to whores is totally unfair to working women.

  61. I was a committed Protestant in Elementary school and there are two things I remember to this day.
    A couple of kids beating the heck out of one of my friends because his religion (I think it was 7 Day Adventist but am not sure now) would not allow him to stand for the pledge since you should not pledge allegiance to any other than God.
    A couple of Catholic kids beating the heck out of me because I had a Celtic sounding name therefore should have been Catholic not Methodist.

    I remember those things every time these illegitimate children try to pretend we can drag God into schools, or the public square. They think this won’t happen this time.

  62. OS,

    You’re right. Ryan should not be compared with a whore. One is an honorable person, striving hard to make their way in the world, who are honest in their intentions and the other is Paul Ryan.

  63. Elsie DL 1, September 9, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    Will I, as an atheist teacher, be required to supervise students during their prayer time? Do the atheist students get to go out and play soccer with me instead?
    ============
    They’ll get beat up, and so will you.

  64. Mike Spindell 1, September 9, 2012 at 2:13 pm

    Ryan is little more than a sociopathic whore.
    ===================================
    Must agree.

  65. idealist707 1, September 9, 2012 at 5:52 pm

    Blouise,

    Allow me to use your joke:

    White man speak with phucked forked brains.

    We do have two brain halves, but I don’t that is the problem.
    ===============================================
    ID707,

    Are you thinking? You have to understand what you’re dealing with.

  66. Frankly,
    as a young kid I learned to run pretty fast to avoid some of those altercations! I did learn that it is harder to run in the hallway of the highschool when a bully already had his hands on me.

  67. Not only is religion is a PERSONAL thing between a person and his / her own god, but for christians, PUBLIC prayer is actually against their own doctrine ! The bible considers it HYPOCRISY !

    Why dont they stay at home and study their bibles instead of trying to foist upon others, their misunderstandings of their own religion ?

  68. 707,

    sen-sen. Not sure how old I was. Probably less than 10. Found a small box of it at home, not sure where. I said anise, but it may have been licorice. The taste was very strong. I liked it.

  69. One of my sisters stabbed a wasp in the back with a needle because she needed to do that for a science project, One of the girls I went to school with in junior high didn’t have any problem cutting the frogs apart.

    I’ll check the tuna can at daylight.
    .

  70. Denis,

    Did you see that one of our christian adherents has quoted the whole sequence of praying in your closet and not on the streetcorners, etc.

    Doing as you preach and not just preaching is the hard part..

  71. BettyKath,

    Never tasted it. The stink appalled me. But then I don’t like licorice. Lady and dsughter sat next to me at busstop. Lady eating long strings of licorice. Gave some to daughter. Daughter said yech. Said to woman that my wife liked livorice, but not I. She claimed it was a woman thing. That women do usually. ???? The daughter, pre-pubertal, did not like it.
    ??????

  72. If the stature of a Person determined goodness tall people would be good short bad.That is not the case..

    idealist707;Jesus said feed my sheep. To pray like people usually pray boosts the ego. To not let anyone know is humbling.
    Good people will be produced. Prayer is a state of mind. Don’t pray, and be out of your mind. Prayer is like the air ever present around you. Don’t pray, and be in a spiritual vacuum.

  73. ArtieWhiteFox,

    I see you have stopped stuttering. Can you come and help me with my computer also?
    I don’t think you understand what I said. I guess the preacher word activated you.

    The whole is based on my tale of an evangelical family I followed to church two Sundays. The father ate Sen-Sen. It smells bad. And preachers often used it. Someone then said that they had found some and liked it. Thus my comments. No judgements of right or wrong is intended.

    Hope this helps.

  74. Dan, it doesn’t matter if it is a “modern” conception.
    Things have changed from 1776. There are a lot of modern conceptions. The fact is the separation of church and state is not a “concept”. It is a constitutional right. The school can not promote one religion or another.

  75. Are people blind? State supports holding people in bondage, justifying death. Religion against Jesus talked themselves into to torturing Jesus doing horrific things to him. How in bloody blue blazes can church, and state be separate?

  76. idealist707,
    Thank you for the clarification. That is a very prolonged stutter.
    I still don’t understand artiewhitefox’s last post, but that’s my failing. I need subject, verb, and object, and some sort of logical sense.

  77. Tell me, what is wrong with what I wrote? Can you be specific?

    Are people blind? State supports holding people in bondage, justifying death. Religion against Jesus talked themselves into to torturing Jesus doing horrific things to him. How in bloody blue blazes can church, and state be separate?

  78. Artiewhitefox,

    The dead fiddles. The backed male dances. An unsuccessful scanner misprints the unaffected war. Why can’t the farmer revolt? An emergency carbon drugs a lord. A projected cough bays against the abolition cook.

  79. JeffD,

    I wish I’d said that. Nothing more need ever be said.

    That said,
    “Where you come from is gone, where you thought you were going to never was there, and where you are is no good unless you can get away from it. Where is there a place for you to be? No place.”
    -Hazel Motes, in Wise Blood by Flannery O’Connor

    Zombies rule Belgium.
    “If you can’t say something nice, say something surrealistic.”
    -Zippy

  80. Artiewhitefox, if they hadn’t “tortur(ing) Jesus doing horrific things to him.” there would be no christianity.

    “How in bloody blue blazes can church, and state be separate?” Real simple answer: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” Jesus is the christian religion. This is not a christian nation no matter how many times republicans repeat that lie (or ignorance).

    Mike, when I went to school we were 75% jewish but still had to dstand in line with an excuse note for our absence on Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah. Our choir sang only christian songs. There was an established religion, christianity, and it just became somthing else you heard in school throughout the year that meant nothing.
    I was surprised senior year when Cheryl, a conservative jew, complained about choir not singing jewish songs or non christian ones. It had honestly never occurred to me (She and I had been in choir since junior high) because the content was meaningless.
    To me this is what religion in the school, forced prayer, forced reading of the Bible does, just makes it something else not worth thinking about.

  81. Mimsy were the borogroves, and the moonraths outgraab…..

    Do you know how you think? I mran really. What lies behind all those thoughts. Not just the ones yuu bother to verhalize, but the ones that spring into your conscious, spnning continents, complete into the smallest detail, perfectly lucidly clear. The ones that takes reams of paper to explain, searching for words, words, arranging them, editing them—-only to be dissatisfied in the end- And be responded to with: “Whaddaya mean?”

    How deep is the process, what traumas are consulted, what happy times, who decides between conflicting feelings, where do the facts, as obssrved through our filters, come in. And sa one person wrote: after the parliament votes, when and how does the prime minister advise the queen?

    One weird thing is that they can see you making a decision to move your hand several seconds before you become aware of thh decision yourself. And they can see how you will move it. So mind control is coming.

    And then my dream will be realized: the tanking over of your mind to a computer, to be run for an eternity, thinking, experiencing, wandering the nets of the world, from trivia to opera, to series where you understand japanese—not only the languege in your terms but in their terms, if you choose to do so, Or bring your farong (foreign in Thai) mind to Thailand and experience it for the “first time”, over nnd over again. Just a little taste of my paradise.

    Is it yours, the mind? You, the ego, the conscious mind?

    Read a description of the prefrontal cortex yesterday as to the functions it is said to perform. Got D- or an F on most of them. Guess why.

    Where is the remedial program for that? A good subjext for study of how we will make one which works.

  82. PS

    “And be responded to with: “Whaddaya mean?””

    Ot course they don’t understand, it is not their thought.

    “I can’t read your mind”! And if they could, what of that thought could they grasp in one lightning flash?

  83. leejcarol,

    Thanks for the viewpoint on christianity in school. Amazing. We were Christians, nominally, but we weren’t religious. Nobody wore crosses or cite bible verses at us nor die we.
    Don’t remember a single religious thing being done. The morning announcments contained only secular material. We had no choir singing in front of an audience. No prayer in class, not even a pledge, bla bla.

    The homecoming queen was a jewish girl, beautiful, kind and well-loved. I knew (vaguely) that she was a jew (whatever that is I said) because I had delivered the afternoone paper in my younger years to them, and collected the money for the subscription.

    So different.

    Thank for reminding me of how we had it.

  84. You know I didnt like i or not like it if I recall, mostky it was just there, but I do remember eating them myself – must have liked the concentration of taste.

  85. In our public 75% jewish school we had a group of kids stand in front every morning, one would do current events, one the Pledge, one read a bible verse, I wouldnt have known any better but I can almost guarantee it was new testament (cause how scary is old?)

  86. A Christian will not war. A Christian will not sing a war song like God bless America,Yes that’s what it is a war song. A Christian will not want to jail or kill anyone . A Christian will not giving an evil eye even even if they see a nude person or a sexual activity people like to war against. A Christian will not fake their love to trap a person to harm them. A Christian will not hide in wait to catch men like people have done to Pedo’s.
    A Christians will be like Jesus is who respects people. .A Christian will love doing the good works of Christ above life itself not harming anyone.. A Christian will think of others as better than themselves minding their own business. Don’t do that, and the beginnings of war will start with people rationalizing that its good to hurt in word or kill. A Christian will ignore the call to arms to war saving their soul. A list of good verses to look up, Proverbs 24 :29, Proverbs 31 :9, Proverbs 11- 9. Proverbs 4 24. ,Proverbs 12 20, Proverbs 17 :23, Proverbs 11:20 , PROVERBS 26:17, James 4;10- 12, KJV,1 Thessalonians 4:11, KJV, James 4:11
    Luke 6:37, Ephesians 4:32 , Matthews 5 >7, Hebrews 12:15; Romans 14:13; Colossians 4:6;K, J, V, Philippians 2:3; ,Rom 12:17, 1 John 4 ,12, Matthew 7:12;1 John 4 ,12, Mark 12:31, Ecclesiastes 9:18,

  87. idealist707 1, September 10, 2012 at 3:24 am

    Matt,
    You get hungry at night and sleep walk. Odd that your mewing does not wake you up. Are your whiskers growing long too?
    ========================================
    Tuna can is empty again. Shaved this morning.

  88. I saw a bumper sticker on a car today while I was buying gasoline. It was pasted on the rear window.

    There was a picture of a large American lag, relative to the size of the bumper sticker. Printed around the flag were the words ” Help me, I am dying.”

  89. rafflaw,

    First I’ll admit I’ve skipped all comments after yours, your comment being “Well said David. Wasn’t Slavery a States issue as well??”

    Why? because the ignorance is striking. Your implication is nothing I haven’t seen before about States’ Rights, the implication that any claim to States’ rights is somehow no more legitimate than, and expressly linked to, Slavery. Yet, we are supposedly living in a Constitutional Republic that recognizes states’ rights and a limited Federal Government (I know, they are only words that mean whatever we choose them to mean). Incorporation doesn’t diminish that

    A quick lesson on the Atlantic slave trade, the banning of that trade, and the end of slavery in the Americas. The ban was in 1807 by the British, who aggressively pursued it, and the USofA in 1808, desultory at worst. The Atlantic Slave trade, about 40 to 45% of the whole slave trade, put 6% of the slaves in the USofA (as colonies, as well post), the rest went to the Caribbean (most) and Brazil (about 35% to that country), and some other sundry countries. Driving economic force wasn’t cotton but sugar cane, cotton came later.

    So we have the division of the Atlantic slave trade, and certainly not solely an American institution, but let’s look when slavery ended in the Americas (don’t confuse slave trade and slavery). The British ended it in 1833, the French in 1858, the Portuguese (Brazil) in 1868 but not effective until 1888. Outside of the Atlantic Slave trade, try 1940’s through 1962, the Middle East continued legal slavery. I believe there is at least one Arab country past that date. That’s official, not practice.

    So practice may be an important consideration, and leads me to the real stain on the USofA. It’s not slavery, obviously when many countries didn’t quit the practice until the middle of the 20th Century, it’s what the South Africans did well, so well, after us (the Aussies did a lessor practice around 1966 (sic) by banning any immigrant not European, don’t know about the Kiwis). The SA’s called it Apartheid, we called it Jim Crow and we did it officially in 1896. You know who gave it the go ahead, without anything alluding to it in the Constitution, that group who are so good at whole cloth rulings, the SCOTUS. Jim Crow was a Federal ruling and it is a greater stain than slavery and it pissed on the Reconstruction Amendments.

    I should fear States’ Rights well after Slavery, which was only one issue and only one region’s issue? We fought a brief but horrendous war on that region’s one issue of State’s rights, and Jim Crow was how long blessed by SCOTUS?

  90. “Your implication is nothing I haven’t seen before about States’ Rights, the implication that any claim to States’ rights is somehow no more legitimate than, and expressly linked to, Slavery.”

    Ariel,

    Your comment was little more that patched together obfuscation of what was going on. What you stated was true, but lacked full context. The truth about reconstruction was that it was effectively ended with the attempted impeachment of Andrew Johnson, who made a deal with the Southern states to remain as President. Reconstruction’s gains were rolled back and the South went from being a defeated region, into one that held great power over this country through its habit of returning congressional incumbents year after year, giving them seniority. Supreme Court appointments also reflected this Southern power. The truth is, that in effect the South won the Civil War and that truth remains today. This is why the Republicans developed the Southern
    (Racist) Strategy that gives the region such power today.

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