Karen McKay, a “retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel living in Western North Carolina,” has an opinion piece in the Asheville Citizen-Times that throws together just about every lie about church/state separation you can imagine, all so she can argue that people of faith like her who oppose the (close to) Ground Zero Mosque (and community center) deserve more tolerance:
But a Greek Orthodox Church at ground zero that was destroyed on 9/11 has not been allowed to rebuild. Children are not allowed to pray on the steps of the Supreme Court. Valedictorians are forbidden to thank God. Kids are prohibited from praying in school and at football games. Local governing bodies are ordered to cease opening prayers.
A federal judge orders that a memorial cross that has stood in the Mojave Desert since 1934 to honor World War I dead be covered — an atheist driving by was offended by the religious symbol. The Alabama Supreme Court chief justice is removed from office for defying a federal judge’s order to remove a graven Ten Commandments from his courthouse.
While the God of Abraham and Moses has been forcibly ejected from the public square, we are to be tolerant of a mosque erected as a monument to the 9/11 attack on America.
Where do you even begin with tripe like this?
The facts behind that Greek Orthodox Church can be read here. As for the rest of it…If you want to pray, go pray.
Valedictorians can thank God in a speech, but public school officials can’t lead the audience in prayer. Kids can pray in schools and football games all they want, but teachers and coaches can’t lead students in such prayers. The law seems pretty clear on this. Individuals have a right to pray, but tax-payer funded leaders can’t coerce or force them into worship.
As for local governments, the city officials can pray all they want… privately. But they can’t use taxpayer-funded time or money to do it. This is why the 10 Commandments monument was removed from the Roy Moore‘s Alabama courthouse and why atheists are winning so many of the lawsuits against local city councils that are intent on praying at meetings.
The law dealing with church/state separation is not anti-Christian. It’s anti-one-religion-taking-over. It allows for religious freedom for everybody so we can all worship (or not) how we please.
I wrote an email to Ms. McKay yesterday pointing out some of these facts… no response yet. I’m waiting.
Why on earth would a newspaper publish something as horrible at this? It’s clearly not fact-checked and McKay provided no citations (as if she could find them if she wanted to). It’s irresponsible of the editors to let this go up on the website under the newspaper’s name.