Obama’s Proclamation on the National Day of Prayer

Once again, Obama is giving an unnecessary hand to the Religious Right by issuing a proclamation for the National Day of Prayer (this Thursday, May 7th).

“President Obama is a committed Christian and believes that we should be engaging Americans of faith in efforts to renew our country,” a White House official said.

“He is following the tradition of Presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush and others by signing a proclamation honoring the National Day of Prayer, while continuing to work with communities of faith to improve our country.”

On the up side, it’s not even close to what Bush did in his years in office. And the Religious Right is not at all pleased about this:

During Bush’s eight years in office, prominent evangelicals, including National Day of Prayer Task Force chairman Shirley Dobson, and her husband, Focus on the Family founder James Dobson, gathered each year for an East Room ceremony on the first Thursday in May.

“We are disappointed in the lack of participation by the Obama administration,” Shirley Dobson said in a statement issued by the task force on Monday. “At this time in our country’s history, we would hope our president would recognize more fully the importance of prayer.”

If you want to call this mere lip service to the faithful from Obama, fine. I still think it’s too much. But he would’ve received more flack for not doing anything so I guess I can understand this political decision.

It sounds like Obama realizes prayer isn’t going to fix our country’s problems. He had to do something on Thursday, though, so there you go.

Meanwhile, the rest of us have an opportunity to participate in the National Day of Reason (not coincidentally, on the same day).

Several of the events taking place in America (and even Alberta, Canada!?) can be found here.

Are you doing anything special that day?

  • Tully

    “He is following the tradition of Presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush and others by signing a proclamation honoring the National Day of Prayer…”

    If only our Constitutional Scholar president would follow the examples of Presidents Jefferson, Madison and Jackson.

    http://members.au.org/site/PageServer?pagename=resources_founding_NDP

  • Ken in Tucson

    After just finishing, The Audacity of Hope, One of Barack’s books; I think he’s a very weak Christian or maybe even agnostic. In one part where he’s talking to his daughters about that, he doesn’t know if there’s an afterlife.

  • Welkie

    I’ll be performing a traditional Pastafarian dance, the Lasagnabada, in lieu of prayer after the holiest of lunches, ravioli. Blessed be the gnocchi. Ramen. Dona Nobis Pesto.

  • Todd

    Skip it and wait for National Day of Slayer

  • http://annainca.blogspot.com Anna

    From various things he’s said and written, I do think there’s a good possibility that Obama is a closet atheist or agnostic.

    So I’m not too disappointed by this news. He had to do something, or there would have been criticism. On the whole, issuing a proclamation is pretty tame.

    I do hope he doesn’t show up to the Focus on the Family event, though. I would be delighted to see the uber-creepy Dobsons snubbed.

  • Neidermeyer
  • EndUnknown

    wait… ALBERTA!? arent they the right wing wacko’s of the north? im glad there are some people with a brain there!

  • billybee

    No big deal. Just think for a moment what May 7th would be like if McCain/Palin had won the election….Be thankful for what you have.

  • Ubi Dubium

    In honor of the National Day of Reason, go DONATE BLOOD! Do something real for your fellow human beings, instead of spending the day talking to some invisible friend.

  • Ray

    On the off chance there is a God I wonder if He or She is even aware or pleased to be recognized by any President.

  • http://terahertzatheist.ca Ian

    Alberta is sitting around 20% (or more) atheists. The rest may be wacko-fundies, but we have a good number of reality-based subscribers (except for the Libertarian atheists, of course).

  • ryan

    he has to espouse religious belief. Its america. His mum n stepdad i think, i may be wrong, Were atheists. I read a study where it said around 90% of children raised in a non religious home turn out non religious. Just a thought.


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