Judge Upholds Decision to Block Forsyth County Prayers

Last I heard, the prayers said before Forsyth County Commissioner’s Meetings were deemed to be unconstitutional.

An update on the case offers good news:

Judge James Beaty upheld the recommendation of a federal magistrate who said prayers referencing Jesus and other sectarian deities made before meetings of the Forsyth County Commissioners are unconstitutional.

Can we put this case to rest now?

The government cannot engage in public displays of prayer. If you want to pray, keep it to yourself and do it in the privacy of your home, office, or mind.

“The prayers given at the invitation of the Forsyth County Commissioners at meetings that I have attended made me feel not just unwelcome, but coerced by my government into endorsing Christian prayer,” said Plaintiff Janet Joyner. “I am very happy with the Court’s ruling today because our government is supposed to be inclusive of all Forsyth County residents.”

This is not a victory for atheists. Or even for non-Christians. It’s a victory for everyone who believes that religion should be a personal matter and not one in which the government should choose sides.

(Thanks to Amy for the link!)

  • TychaBrahe

    Yes, let’s remember that Americans United is full of Christians who don’t believe that prayer has any place at government meetings.

  • muggle

    Good. Maybe I’ll send this to the Albany City Council.

  • Wayne Dunlap

    Nicely said. It time that religions stopped trying to force their beliefs on others. When a religious group gets involved in politics, they should lose their tax exemption because they are no longer separated from the State. The constitution plainly states that there is supposed to be separation of Church and State.

  • http://krissthesexyatheist.blogspot.com krissthesexyatheist

    I hope the central valley situation turns out the same.

  • Ron in Houston

    What never ceases to amaze me is that Jesus said pray in private and don’t make a spectacle of your prayers.

    Why more heads don’t explode from cognitive dissonance simply boggles my mind.