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In Jesus' Name We Pray: Federal Court Judge Smacks Brian Bosma Down

A federal court judge has barred the House Speaker from permitting sectarian prayers at the opening of business when the Legislature is in session:

"Judge David Hamilton did not ban prayers in the House. But he ordered that any person chosen to give the invocation be informed that it must not advance any one faith or be used to attempt to convert listeners."

Praise be.

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Did you realize that only the Christian God answers prayers? Here's a great quote from the AP story:

"During one prayer in April, elder Clarence Brown of Second Baptist Church in Bedford sang a gospel song called 'Just A Little Talk With Jesus,' prompting some lawmakers to leave the chamber and several people to lodge complaints with the ICLU.

"Brown said Wednesday he disagrees with Hamilton's ruling.

"'If it is not in the name of Jesus Christ, the Son of God who died on the cross, your prayers will not get answered,' Brown said."

State government commanded by the federal court to control how we pray. Can't say Christ. Can't say Lord. Can't say Vishnu, Shiva or Brahma (Hindu for those who don't know). Can't say Abraham. Can't say Muhammad. Can't say -- you name it, what's next. Lousy ruling. I prefer diversity that speaks, freely and loudly.

beats the heck out of letting brian 'holier than thou while he screws every intern' bosma have his way preaching christianity from the dais

Wow, watch it, pal -- don't let your hatred blind you to the fact that your own freedom to speak your own peace is on the line here. Censorship -- even censorship of those we despise -- sucks.

11:03 p.m. -- freedom to speak one's own piece is not the issue here, but you're playing the same misdirection game that Bosma is.

Rather -- Bosma already stipulated that this is government speech. As such, the courts are only enforcing rather old (22 yrs) and fairly settled rules about the contours of appropriate goverment speech in the context of the establishment clause.

YOu and Bosma are still, and shall continue to be (thanks to rulings like this), free to pray to whomever you choose. Do so outside, loudly. Do it inside, politely. Invoke whatever savior you desire. But someone speaking for government may not.

The rhetoric surrounding this decision has grown in a short period to epic proportions. As has been stated here and on other blogs, this isn't an issue of whether or not you can pray inside the Statehouse or anywhere else, for that matter. It's an issue of government-endorsed prayer in the sense that someone speaking from the Speaker's podium is speaking for more than himself or herself.

Personally, I've never understood why we need to pray before legislative business begins, but I'm not a lawmaker, so I don't get to make that call. It would seem as though the Pledge of Allegiance (your choice: with or without "under God") would be sufficient to kick things off.

What bothers me the most about the reaction to this is that Speaker Bosma is a lawyer, and he knows full well that what he's saying is in direct conflict with decades of law.

Unfortunately, no one can speak out against his chest-thumping because those people would look like apologists for religious extinguishment. So it goes with the wedge issues.

The very important point is that Bosma's public reaction deliberately ignores what he conceded in the court proceedings: the House prayers are government speech, not private speech. Bosma is a smart guy and a lawyer, so he knows that the distinction is critical. Instead, he's deliberately attempting to inflame divisive religious passions for political gain, which is exactly the kind of thing the Establishment Clause was created to protect against.

Blue smoke and mirrors ...... Mitch would bankrupt education so he can keep them kiddies real stupid .... that way they can keep on bamboozling the public with this ridiculous rhetoric!

My daddy used to say, "Can't you think for yourself?" followed by - "If everyone else jumps off the cliff, are you going to follow?" Seems like we might have to change our State song to a rendition of Handel's "Are We Like Sheep"

I'm thinking that people in Kokomo without jobs, teachers who are laid off, parents without afterschool programs, highways unfinished, property taxes going up, city taxes going up ..... the legislature should have better things to do with their time (AND OUR MONEY) than worry about a 2 minute prayer ... unless of course they're praying to keep their jobs!!! Cuz personally I think they could find a better use of both time and money than singing gospel songs!! So how about this .... pray on your time and to whom you see fit .... legislate on OUR time.

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