Monday, September 10, 2012
The 2012 threat of a lawsuit from a Wisconsin-based organization has prompted a Georgia school district to ban school sanctioned prayer before school sponsored events. And even in the case of the prayers being non-sanctioned, schools across the South are anxious to avoid costly legal disputes in the courts.
What cannot be disputed: The Freedom From Religion Foundation, based in the Upper mid-Western, U.S., has once more decided to impose their own brand of bigotry and intolerance on religious people in the Southern portion of the U.S.
By evoking the threat of lawsuits to be filed against public school systems, the FFRM continues to impose their own brand of culture on the Southern portion of the United States.
With willing lawyers always ready to assist, that threat is never to be taken lightly. With school budgets stretched beyond the breaking point, the costs of litigation are just too much to fight. School district officials throughout the South are folding their beliefs away for the good of saving the cost of the fight.
Interestingly, what the FFRM cannot do is wrest a Southerner's desire to pray in public completely away from him. They cannot cause a young person who has grown up praying to God and to Jesus to stop doing so. People will find a way to pray! And people will pray at the most public of events whether those officiating those events are fearful or not.
You might think that your freedom to be anit-religious is also the same as your freedom to be non-religious. It's not. People who are non-religious might walk through their daily routine never thinking about a deity. All the while, they are probably not devising ways to wrest religion from the public square. The non-religious might ignore the importance of religion in the daily lives of other Americans. They therefore, feel no need for raising funds for their next assault on those who might place importance on religious matters.
No, there is a wide gulf of difference between those who are indifferent to religion, and those who are hostile. There are plenty of non-religious who will tolerate the rest of us, and then there are the bigots. Those who are non-tolerant of the public and private display of religion are God-mockers; and they love to use their freedoms to place their intolerance on display.
And while there are plenty of atheists, non-religious and intolerant people living in the Southern part of the United States, the idea that outside groups could impose their own threats of lawsuits to evoke a capitulation on the part of local officials is to be despised - and fought.
The current threats are nothing new. For decades, school districts have wrestled with this problem. For decades, public forums and public events have been plagued with the problem that the non-religious might be offended at the mention of a sectarian prayer. No one thinks they can afford the costly litigation that can be brought by out-of-work lawyers.
What is new is that local Southerners are become more and more impatient with the idea that our culture and heritage can be so easily dismissed by threats and intimidation. We are growing increasingly outraged at what an easy target we are for Northern bigots. We WILL find ways to get around the threats and the legal obstacles. We WILL find ways to "train up our children in the way they should go". We WILL find ways to inculcate our progeny with our belief systems. WE WILL FIND WAYS TO PRAY!
Never - ever - dismiss a praying man or woman. Never - ever - dismiss the will of a Southern man or woman. Never - ever - dismiss the will of a people united to share our beliefs with our kids and our communities. You do so at your own peril. In doing so, you thumb your nose at our God. That will ultimately cost you.