Thursday, May 7, 2009

National Day of Prayer

On this, the National Day of Prayer, I am praying for the end of the National Day of Prayer. There is absolutely no reason to have the government involved in something like this and I'm already tired of the faux outrage from the right because Obama is choosing to pray privately (which is what it says to do in the Bible). We've got too much prayer in this country, too many people wearing their religion on their sleeve, how about a National Day of Secularism? Or a National Day of Logic? And how about we celebrate it 365 days a year?

The funny thing about this bullshit holiday is that it's only been around since 1952. My dad is older than the National Day of Prayer, so it's just more evidence that this country has been hijacked by the religious right and they've been at this for quite a few decades. It is a direct violation of the First Amendment and the exact opposite of what our Founding Fathers intended. Let's take a look at some quotes from our third president:

"Fasting and prayer are religious exercises; the enjoining them an act of discipline. Every religious society has a right to determine for itself the time for these exercises, and the objects proper for them, according to their own particular tenets; and right can never be safer than in their hands, where the Constitution has deposited it. ...civil powers alone have been given to the President of the United States and
no authority to direct the religious exercises of his constituents."

"Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach actions only, and not opinions, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between church and State."
-Thomas Jefferson

Many of our Founding Fathers were believers in one way or another, but they were also very critical of religious institutions and they actually questioned the very idea of religion. Benjamin Franklin once said, "The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason," imagine if a candidate today said that. He'd be run out of town, tarred and feathered by the right-wing propaganda machine and his political career would be over. Today, you don't necessarily have to be as crazy as George W. Bush and hear voices in your head, but you do have to have some religion. Of course, this is unconstitutional, but it's an unwritten law, so there's really not much rational people can do about it.

You know what I hope Obama is doing to celebrate today? Working! He's the President of the United States, he's got far more important things to do. Prayer sure as hell isn't going to get us out of recession, get people back to work or solve the crisis in Pakistan (actually I think prayer is the exact cause of the crisis in Pakistan), so I'd much rather him be getting shit done. I know Barack Obama is a man of faith, but for the sake of this nation, I hope he's lying. We had eight years of a man who thought he had magical powers and look where that got us... maybe it's time for an appeal to reason? Pray on your own time, do what makes you feel good, but keep it away from our government.

5 comments:

FriarWade said...

You said, "which is what it says to do in the Bible." you haven't read the whole thing, have you? Many Christians haven't. So no big deal.

Razor said...

No, but I am familiar with Matthew 6:5-6:

"When you pray, you shall not be as the hypocrites, for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Most assuredly, I tell you, they have received their reward. But you, when you pray, enter into your inner chamber, and having shut your door, pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly."

Mel D said...

I have to agree with you, Ray. I actually just started going to a new MD who proceeded to tell me that my depression and anxiety were a state of mind and that, instead of being medicated, I should read my Bible for 15 minutes a day.

Frankly, I didn't go to church. I went to the doctor. I don't need a religious intervention because I have emotional issues (which, by the way, are scientifically proven to be genetic!) There should be a line there..

Razor said...

That's incredibly disturbing, Mel. If a doctor actually said that to me, I'd make sure every person I know should stay away from that quack. He might as well refer you to a witch doctor or tell you to do a rain dance.

Jamie said...

Mel, I hope you found a new doctor. One who deals with that newfangled science stuff.

If we could really pray away sickness, we'd all be living a loooong time.