Daniels: Prayer ruling 'regrettable'; House GOP might announce appeal, by Ashley M. Heher (Associated Press – published in the Courier-Journal).
Their Man Mitch, a.k.a. “Hoosier Vanguard?,” took a quick Friday break from composing his most recent thank-you note to syndicated columnist George Will, and expressed righteous outrage over the ACLU’s refusal to back away from taunting the Christian Right with passages from the US Constitution.
Gov. Mitch Daniels said yesterday that he disagrees with a federal court ruling restricting prayers in the state House of Representatives.
"I just think it's regrettable," he said in his weekly meeting with reporters. "It's in a long line of confusing and sometimes clumsy attempts by courts to insert themselves into this issue."
Confusing and clumsy? Not at all, given that the fundamental question pertaining to this issue simply isn’t being asked.
Why must there be a prayer at all in such a setting?
After all, it’s hardly a church.
U.S. District Judge David Hamilton offers a welcomed nod in this direction:
"All are free to pray as they wish in their own houses of worship or in other settings," Hamilton wrote in his opinion. "The individuals do not have a First Amendment right, however, to use an official platform like the Speaker's podium at the opening of a House session to express their own religious faiths."
Imagine that ... freedom to pray as one wished without state sanction? Perhaps it's something we can at least try here in America.
Rather than debate the semantic merits of neutral theological utterances, simply eliminate the prayer, and people of genuine faith can pursue this avenue in their own way and on their own time without it being commandeered as a backdoor effort to publicly proselytize.