Did School Prayer Just Become a Reality in a Louisiana School District? One Blogger Got to the Bottom of the Story

I’m a huge fan of bloggers who function as community watchdogs, making sure things like church/state separation are being respected in areas that larger media outlets may not be paying much attention to.

For months now, Randall Hayes has been tracking House Bill 660 in Louisiana, a bill sponsored by Democrat Katrina R. Jackson (below), that would have required all the state’s elementary and high schools to recite the Lord’s Prayer.

Last we heard, that bill had been renamed House Bill 724 and gutted to the point that no formal prayers would be allowed in school and no students would be required to participate.

On Tuesday, however, Randall noticed something strange in the Bastrop Enterprise newspaper:

House Bill No. 660 by Katrina Jackson, which re-introduced school prayer and the pledge of allegiance in Louisiana schools, was the main topic of discussion at the town hall meeting held by the Morehouse Parish School System on Friday night.

“We are excited to have open prayer back in schools,” Ferrell said.

What’s going on…? Randall thought House Bill 660 was defunct. And what’s this about “open prayers” in school? Did he miss something huge or was this a simple mistake?

He followed up with the story, contacting both the newspaper’s editor and the district’s superintendent, and got to the bottom of the story. You should read how it all went down here.

This is the sort of reporting any of us can do. We just have to keep on top of what’s going on in our communities and be willing to make some phone calls or write some emails. It’s really not hard, yet so few people do it.

Huge tip of my hat to Randall, for showing us how it’s done.

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.


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