October 28, 2005

Pre-Game Prayers

I ran across this letter written by an evangelical Christian and thought it was worth recommending. The author takes a strong and unexpected position against school-sanctioned prayer. Drawing on his experience as a religious minority while stationed abroad in the Air Force, he realized the effects of imposing the religion of the majority on the minority.

"Yet when placed in a setting where the majority culture proved hostile to my faith and beliefs, I became paralyzed with indecision and could not act decisively to defend and proclaim my own beliefs. I felt instantly ostracized and viewed myself as a foreigner in my own land."

Unfortunately, this insightful comment reflects the day-to-day experience of atheists in America.

"Because unless you're ready to endure the unwilling exposure of yourself and your children to those beliefs and practices that your own faith forswears, you have no right to insist that others sit in silence and complicity while you do the same to them."

I'd like to conclude by applauding the sentiment expressed by this author. He is an example of the kind of Christian who could be a powerful ally in our quest to preserve the wall of separation between church and state. Maybe the next time we find ourselves tempted to lump all Christians together as ignorant we should first re-read this letter.