November 29, 2007

Sectarian Prayer In Indiana Senate

According to The Indianapolis Star, the Indiana Senate plans to open its session on Tuesday with a prayer to Jesus Christ. Never mind that a U.S. District Court ruled in 2005 that sectarian prayers violated the separation of church and state because this ruling was overturned last month by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on a technicality. Fortunately, the ACLU again rises to the challenge of enforcing the U.S. Constitution when few others seem interested in doing so.

Knowing that it was once declared illegal and that it is sure to bring controversy, why would the Indiana Senate feel the need to go down this road again? According to
Senate President Pro Tempore David Long,
We had made it clear in the Senate that we totally and strongly disagreed with Judge Hamilton's original decision. That suit has been tossed out, it's no longer valid and we can -- in my opinion, without question -- say our prayers as we choose.
In other words, they intend to violate the Constitution for as long as they can get away with it. As the article notes, the 7th Circuit's decision may have overturned the lower court's ruling, but it did not state that sectarian prayers were permissible. And so the dance continues.

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