Oh look, a poll on the Missouri Public Prayer Amendment

Christina here…

Look what my home state has churned up this week.

A poll on the Missouri Public Prayer Amendment!

Dr. B has written a few things on this Amendment, mostly how it proposes to allow clergy to give invocations at public meetings (US Constitution be damned) and lets kids declare that certain school topics are against their religious sensibilities and thus be granted an exception from learning.

It also reaffirms that kids can pray in schools.

The poll has this creatively loaded question:

Do you think the federal courts are correct in ruling that the Constitution allows government to stop prayer in schools and on public property, or do you think when the Constitution says no branch of the government shall interfere with the free exercise of religion that it gives Americans the right to pray anywhere they want?

Say what? Prayer in schools can be stopped when such a prayer is led during school hours by a school official, or if prayer is part of a schoolwide assembly, etc. But if a kid wants to pray over his food or read his Bible or form an after school Christian club, he surely can…. is that what this means?

I suggest you go check out the poll and let them know what you think.

 Learn more about Christina and follow her @ziztur.

About christinastephens
  • ‘Tis Himself

    Anyone living in the US has the right to pray whenever and wherever they want. They do not have the right to have government support for their prayers. Why is this distinction so hard for some people to understand?

    Yeah, it’s a rhetorical question.

  • http://twitter.com/zelinator ZeLinator

    Yeah, that question on St. Louis Mayor Slay’s site was fairly loaded, but I was a contrarian ass and voted against it anyway.

  • iknklast

    Kids can pray in schools, of course, but they shouldn’t be doing it in a way that disrupts class, and if the teacher insists they listen to the lecture, they really should pay attention. But what the hell? If they’re praying to pass the test instead of listening and studying, at least I have the comfort of knowing they probably won’t pass (God has never done very well on science tets).

    Perhaps if they’re given the right not to learn anything they disagree with, then atheists should take advantage of this, and get their kids a pass from learning nonsense. Since 13% of high school science teachers admit to teaching ID or creationism, this might be very helpfu.l.

  • Yoritomo

    Strange. If the respondents answered honestly, 80% or so were Missouri residents, but 36% were nobelievers? Even for a heavily Democratic sample, that’s an impressive amount of atheists.

    Fun fact: At least 1% of respondents pray despite not believing in the existence of a god who answers prayers.

    • emptyknight

      I’ll admit to being one of the 1% of unbelievers who pray. When you were raised as religiously as I was, it becomes a reflex. When I see a bad car wreck on the side of the road, I often catch myself thinking “Please let everyone be ok” at the universe or whatever. It happens less and less as the years go by though.

      Back on topic — anyone who lives in the South is very familiar with the double-think required to simultaneously understand that amendment and support it. If it passes, at least there will be some humor value when the fundies realize they’ve just given secular students the right to opt out of ID and abstinence-only sex education.

  • christophburschka

    The current results show that even among people who do pray, the majority opposed the crappy amendment. That’s sort of comforting.

  • Bill Yeager

    The poll has this creatively loaded question

    I struggle to find a single one of those poll questions that isn’t appallingly loaded. It truly is a fucking marvel of weasel words and damned-if-you-do nasty ignorant toss.

    It it extremely similar in style to your country’s rather strange practice of being able to ‘tack on’ additional riders that have nothing to do with the original bill yet are so emotive, you are forced to vote in the one direction it intends you to.

    “I’d like to tack on to the ‘Free Healthcare for ALL’ bill a motion that replaces the use of a traditional football with several kittens stuffed in to a plastic bag” – All in favour of the ‘Free Healthcare’ Bill? – What, nobody?

    • John Horstman

      Damn! That would have helped; Kittenball is very popular. :-P

  • Rick Craig

    Let’s also observe that when the poll says “the Constitution says no branch of the government shall interfere” there’s a stark textual disconnect from the actual wording of the 1st Amendment which says *exactly* that “CONGRESS shall make no law …”

  • G.Shelley

    Do you think the federal courts are correct in ruling that the Constitution allows government to stop prayer in schools and on public property, or do you think when the Constitution says no branch of the government shall interfere with the free exercise of religion that it gives Americans the right to pray anywhere they want?

    Which I think gives away a lot. Sadly, there was no “The Federal courts have not ruled this, in fact, they have ruled the opposite, that government is not allowed to stop prayer if people wish to pray privately without disrupting others (and even then, they are given considerable leeway in what is considered a disruption), and that government cannot prevent prayer groups in schools as long as they allow other non academic groups”

  • ischemgeek

    I sent them a message complaining about the biased survey design that would result in skewed results, told them they misrepresented the federal court rulings, and asked that they correct their errors in survey design.

    Who’s willing to bet they a) don’t send me so much as a ‘we received your message’ message, b) don’t correct the survey and c) if the survey gives them what they want, they tout it as Proof the amendment is right, but if it turns out contrary to their attempts at loading it, they brush it under the rug and pretend it didn’t happen?

  • baal

    Well that was a fun push poll. I particularly enjoyed,

    To help you think about the issue:

    Do you pray regularly?

    God is wAtchiNg, how do you vote now!(eleventy).

    (how do xtians write with all the extra formatting, it’s a PITA)


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X