Since 2011, House Republicans have repeatedly tried to pass a bill add a prayer plaque to the World War 2 memorial in Washington, DC. It makes good politics, of course; they can then go back home and tell harrowing tales of those evil liberals who hate God and our fallen heroes. Several church/state separation groups sent a letter to the leaders of the committee considering the legislation urging them to reject it.
The Center for Inquiry (CFI) joined eight leading religious and secularist groups this week in urging members of the U.S. House of Representatives to reject a problematic bill that would add a prayer plaque to the World War II memorial in Washington, D.C.
Earlier today, the House Subcommittee on Public Lands and Environmental Regulation hosted a hearing on H.R. 2715, which would “direct the Secretary of the Interior to install in the area of the World War II Memorial in the District of Columbia a suitable plaque or an inscription with the words that President Franklin D. Roosevelt prayed with the United States on June 6, 1944, the morning of D-Day.”
Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio) and Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) have submitted variations of the legislation since 2011; having once been approved by the full House of Representatives, but never passed by the full Senate. CFI has partnered with groups such as Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the American Civil Liberties Union to oppose this legislation each time it has been considered by a Congressional body. For instance, this past fall we collectively sent a letter opposing the Senate companion bill, S. 1044, when it came up in committee, where it remains…Other groups joining us in fighting this legislation include the American Jewish Committee, Hindu American Foundation, Interfaith Alliance, National Council of Jewish Women, and the United Methodist Church.
It occurs to me what is really at the root of the Christian right’s obsession with getting prayers included with every kind of public display of meeting: They’re marking their territory, pissing around the boundaries of what they think is their property — the government — to make sure everyone knows that if they are allowed in at all, it is only because the Christians are so magnanimous.