May 25, 2014 4:02 pm -

Virginia officials are violating the Constitution by deciding which religions can offer prayers and which can’t at government meetings. This falls under the “all or none” category. If a government is going to sanction any religion it has to sanction all. Or it has to stay away from religion entirely. When will they learn?
The ACLU sent a letter Thursday to the Chesterfield County Board of Supervisors, which had limited opening prayers to ordained leaders of monotheistic religions.

“The First Amendment requires governing bodies to allow everyone the chance to deliver prayers before official meetings,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. “If they don’t, then what they’re doing is unconstitutional.”

A state appeals court upheld the county’s policy in a 2005 ruling, and the board has invited local clergy whose names are drawn from an official county list.

Almost all of those religious leaders have represented Christian denominations, and the county has denied a Wiccan’s request to be added to the list.

Officials defended that decision, saying the “neo-pagan” faith does not fall within the Judeo-Christian tradition and “invokes polytheistic, pre-Christian deities.”

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

No responses to Virginia Officials: No Followers of ‘Pre-Christian Deities’ Can Offer Prayers

  1. Obewon May 25th, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    Paging Ted Cruz Sr & Jr… Express yourself!

    Only secular Prayer is ALLOWED by US Public funding via SCOTUS 1971 “The Lemon test” stating that in order to be constitutional under the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment any practice sponsored within state run schools (or other public, state sponsored activities) must adhere to the following three criteria:[12]

    1. Have a secular purpose;
    2. Must neither advance nor inhibit religion; and
    3. Must not result in an excessive entanglement between government and religion.… As usual RWNJ’s are always wrong on everything and Wrong for America per the U.S. Constitution Bill of Rights!

  2. cogitoergodavesum May 25th, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    So if pre-Christian deities are out, that sort of eliminates that “You two get out of my Garden of Eden” God character, right? Leaves room for this recent one.

    • Budda May 25th, 2014 at 6:03 pm

      Well, Slowhand is sorta spectacular…

    • fancypants May 27th, 2014 at 12:18 am

      wow were you looking for unfinished beer cans or dead bodies ?

    • starskeptic June 11th, 2014 at 2:32 pm

      Maybe recently made – but the sentiment dates back to the 1970’s when these started popping up.

  3. Richard Rondeau May 25th, 2014 at 9:17 pm

    If pre-Christian and polytheistic are not allowed, send in the Hare
    Krishna devotes. Their Krishna worship religion is 100% mono-theistic
    (Krishna alone is creator of all) and they believe God came to earth as
    Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu only 500 years ago, making the Jesus story old news.

  4. fahvel May 26th, 2014 at 2:41 am

    let’s see – that means that 48,567 years of pure homo sapiens history is erased or irrelevant?

  5. Amy July 30th, 2014 at 6:46 am

    Their defense of the decision was not something like “this is the majority tradition” or anything reasonable (though still unconstitutional)…their defense was “yeah, we don’t like other religions that worship non-Christian dieties and polytheism…that’s reason enough, right?”