Hice Wonders Who Could Object to School Prayer

Pastor Jody Hice, who will almost certainly represent Georgia in the next Congress, simply cannot understand how anyone could object to school-sponsored prayer. Assuming that everyone must believe exactly as he does — or that they don’t matter if they do not — he advocates pure majoritarianism:

“We have a majority of people who want to have a prayer before a ballgame and yet we are rapidly becoming a society where the minority rule,” Hice lamented, adding, “If you’re in the majority in a situation like this, the minority rules. I don’t believe that is the intent of our Constitution.”

So if the majority decided to, say, outlaw prayer and bible reading, you’d be perfectly find with that, right? Of course not. You’d scream about your rights. But you only believe in rights when they belong to you, screw everyone else.

“Who could possibly be offended” by a school-sponsored sectarian prayer, Hice asked, recalling that in his school athletic years a prayer was read before every game and “I don’t recall anyone on either side of our competition every being taken off in an ambulance to the hospital.”

Leaving aside the utter stupidity of claiming that if there are prayers said before a football game, no one will get injured…You know who could be offended? You could, Mr. Hice. The moment a prayer is offered that is not Christian, you would be so offended that you would be screaming bloody murder. But since you’re safely in the majority for now, you don’t care that anyone else might be offended.

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  • Kevin Kehres

    Subhaan Allah, Alhamdo lillah, Allaho Akbar.

  • D. C. Sessions

    But since you’re safely in the majority for now, you don’t care that anyone else might be offended.

    “Offended” is such a wonderful euphemism. At best.

    I was in school back when school prayers were routine pretty much everywhere, and had the interesting experience of refusing to participate. Being bigger than anyone two years older than me, I didn’t catch much in the way of actual beatings but not everyone was so lucky — including one kid who I presume was Jewish, but hard to know this long afterward. He found out the hard way that no participating in the school prayer was practically guaranteed to get you beat up with no witnesses.

    So, no, Mr. Hice it’s not about being “offended.” Your majoritarianism doesn’t end with the loyalty pledge you demand of everyone, because regardless of what the law may say, there’s an enforcement program that goes with it.

  • raven

    he advocates pure majoritarianism:

    Rather stupid of him.

    Hice’s kooky fundie cult xianity only makes up around 25% of the USA. And it is slowly dying out.

    There is no one version of xianity that is a national majority. Live by Majoritarianism, die by Majoritarianism.

  • John Pieret

    Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of death. Amen

    There are plenty of places in America where the majority would be ok with the government schools imposing that prayer on Hice’s children. Would he be all right with that?

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Historically, the first organized protests against US school prayer came from Catholics, who didn’t like their kids being forced to recite Protestant prayers.

    Shall we put that up for a vote too, Mr. Hice? That would certainly bring the community together, wouldn’t it?

  • dingojack

    John Pieret – “السلام عليك يا مريم، الممتلئة نعمة، الرب معك. أنت مباركة بين النساء، ومباركة ثمرة بطنك يسوع. يا قديسة مريم، والدة الله، صلي لأجلنا نحن الخطأة، الآن وفي ساعة موتنا. آمين”

    Watch fundie’s heads explode. Bask in the glorious light of said explosions.

    Dingo

  • tbell

    He seems to have a hard time distinguishing between “minority rules” and “neutral”. If the minority did indeed rule then we’d be hearing Muslim or Hindu prayers instead of Christian before school sporting events.

  • raven

    What is the purpose of Forced Prayer in Schools anyway?

    It doesn’t do anything in the Real World.

    SInce we prohibited Forced Prayers, the crime rate, the abortion rate, and the teenage pregnancy rate have been…going down.

    IIRC, in a lot of European countries they still have state religions and prayers and religious classes in public schools. And xianity has gone nowhere but downhill anyway.

    It’s just more xian territorial marking, pissing on a fire hydrant.

  • D. C. Sessions

    What is the purpose of Forced Prayer in Schools anyway?

    Putting them in their place, and warm fuzzies for their betters.

  • scienceavenger

    So if the majority decided to, say, outlaw prayer and bible reading, you’d be perfectly find with that, right? Of course not. You’d scream about your rights. But you only believe in rights when they belong to you, screw everyone else…You know who could be offended? You could, Mr. Hice. The moment a prayer is offered that is not Christian, you would be so offended that you would be screaming bloody murder. But since you’re safely in the majority for now, you don’t care that anyone else might be offended.

    This is pure speculation, what we rightly condemn wingnuts for – making shit up instead of dealing with the facts. Now if we have actual evidence that Mr. Hice has behaved in this way, and is not the hard core majoritarian he claims he is, fine, you’ve got a good argument. Otherwise, its as lean a beef as when Christians claim it doesn’t matter what atheists say they believe, because they really just hate God.

  • Sastra

    “Who could possibly be offended” by a school-sponsored sectarian prayer, Hice asked, recalling that in his school athletic years a prayer was read before every game and “I don’t recall anyone on either side of our competition every being taken off in an ambulance to the hospital.”

    You know, this could be interpreted 2 different ways. One is that Hice thinks the prayers prevented injuries. The other is that Hice thinks that people who want church-state separation are whiny crybabies who imagine that people who hear prayers they don’t like will need an ambulance and hospitalization. Prayer prevents injury vs. prayer never injures anybody. I thought it was the second.

  • Glenn E Ross

    tbell @7 sez:

    He seems to have a hard time distinguishing between “minority rules” and “neutral”.

    I think this is one of the big reasons that the religious right wants to define atheism as a religion. In their view:

    Secularism is equal to atheism.

    Atheism is a religion

    Therefore a secular government is not neutral, it is promoting the religion of atheism.

  • alanb

    Pierce R. Butler says

    Historically, the first organized protests against US school prayer came from Catholics, who didn’t like their kids being forced to recite Protestant prayers.

    See “Philadelphia Bible Riots” of 1844.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    alanb “See “Philadelphia Bible Riots” of 1844.”

    I was there. It was awful. Wave after wave of rioting bibles running through the streets, fighting. A Latin Vulgate torched my car!

  • cjcolucci

    Maybe it would help if we could get people calling it “Government Prayer.”

  • coragyps

    Even better, Mr. Pieret:

    “Dios te salve María, llena eres de gracia, el Señor es contigo. Bendita tú eres entre todas las mujeres, y bendito es el fruto de tu vientre Jesús. Santa María, madre de Dios, ruega por nosotros pecadores, ahora y en la hora de nuestra muerte. Amén.”

    That’s the one we need here in West Texas. A majority is a majority, after all.

  • Crimson Clupeidae

    Well, when Congress invited some Hindus to say the opening prayer, I wonder who it was that got all offended?

    And it seems there was an instance a few years ago, in Hawaii, I think, where a local (pagan!!) was invited to say a prayer (Polynesian?) before a football game. Again, I’m pretty sure I know where all the whining came from…..

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=611455454 David Hart

    Raven@3:

    Live by Majoritarianism, die by Majoritarianism.

    I’m reminded of one of my favourite macabre jokes: Jesus said ‘Whoever lives by the sword shall die by the sword’. Of course, Jesus himself is believed to have lived as a carpenter and died by being nailed to a piece of wood.

  • dan4

    @10 “This is pure speculation….”

    Not all speculation is unreasonable and certainly not in this case. Do you actually believe that Hice would be okay with the outlawing of prayer and bible reading if the majority wanted that? Your whole post comes across as either a. stupidity or b. being a contrarian solely for the sake of being a contrarian.

  • dingojack

    MO (#14) – ‘… thanks Obama!’*

    Dingo

    ———

    * evidently the Obama Time Machine and Mind Control Device™ (OTMMC), brought a car back to before 1844.

    It’s all his fault (as always).

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000263140906 Donovan

    So by his own reasoning, since the majority voted for Obama and the majority of congress votes cast were for Democrats, the GOP should sit down and shut the f— up? Right?

  • JPS

    @6 dingojack:

    Well done! (bing translator helped).

  • zmidponk

    Glenn E Ross:

    I think this is one of the big reasons that the religious right wants to define atheism as a religion. In their view:

    Secularism is equal to atheism.

    Atheism is a religion

    Therefore a secular government is not neutral, it is promoting the religion of atheism.

    And in his case, other religions are not religions, so are not deserving of any Constitutional protections. A couple of quotes from a Tea Party event in 2011:

    Most people think Islam is a religion, it’s not. It’s a totalitarian way of life with a religious component. But it’s much larger. It’s a geo-political system that has governmental, financial, military, legal and religious components. And it’s a totalitarian system that encompasses every aspect of life and it should not be protected.

    This is not a tolerant, peaceful religion even though some Muslims are peaceful. Radical Muslims believe that Sharia is required by God and must be imposed worldwide. It’s a movement to take over the world by force. A global caliphate is the objective. That’s why Islam would not qualify for First Amendment protection since it’s a geopolitical system … This is a huge thing to realize and I hope you do. This will impact our lives if we don’t get a handle on it.

  • Pieter B, FCD

    Why I’m Against Pre-Game Prayers

    Let me start by saying I am an evangelical Christian and have pretty hard-core beliefs about the rights of individuals, particularly students, to express their faith, to include religious themes in their school work, to perform Christian-themed music and dramas during school talent events, etc. If a school administrator had ever tried to stop one of my kids from carrying a Bible, participating in voluntary prayer, or openly discussing their faith with another student, I would have sued him back in to the Stone Age.

    You might be surprised then to learn that I am adamantly opposed to teachers and other school officials leading students in prayer or the conduct of prayer rituals, even by students, at officially sanctioned events. Why would I take a position that is seemingly so at odds with my core beliefs?

    He found himself in the minority, and instead of getting angry, realized how non-christians feel when they’re in the minority.

    Read more — it’s amazing to me that this piece is still up at Whirled Nut Doilies.