ND House Cancels Muslim Invocation

ND House Cancels Muslim Invocation February 22, 2015

And yet another example of the undeniable fact that when the Christian right demands “religious freedom” what they really want is Christian privilege. A Muslim was invited to give the invocation before the North Dakota House of Representatives this week but it was canceled at the last minute. And you’re going to love the reason why:

Republican leaders in the North Dakota House of Representatives said they canceled the opening prayer by a Muslim on Ash Wednesday because some members thought it was more appropriate to have a Christian deliver the invocation.

Dr. Nadim Koleilat, board president of the Bismarck Muslim Community Center, ended up giving the invocation in the Senate instead of the House.

Comments made on the District 24 Republicans’ Facebook page – including one posted Monday that called Koleilat’s planned appearances in the House on Wednesday and in the Senate next week “political correctness at its worst” – were brought to House members’ attention Wednesday morning by a district resident who urged lawmakers to “oppose the prejudice, intolerance and ignorance that is encompassed within these posts.”

District 24 Rep. Dwight Kiefert, R-Valley City, was among those who objected to having a non-Christian deliver the prayer on Ash Wednesday.

“I mean, you had representatives on the floor with ash on their foreheads commemorating the day. And so then you’re going to force them to listen to a prayer that they don’t agree with? It wasn’t very well thought out, I don’t think,” he said.

Funny, when non-Christians say that they shouldn’t be forced to listen to a prayer they don’t agree with, people like Kiefert find it unimaginable that anyone would make such a stupid argument. Because it isn’t about religious freedom, it’s about Christian privilege. The nerve of someone other than a Christian thinking they should be given access to the same forum that Christians use to force others to sit through their religious exercises — and to do so while people are busy being Christian to boot! Inconceivable!

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