Group Files Federal Lawsuit To Stop Perry’s Prayer Day

AUSTIN (AP) – The Freedom from Religion Foundation has filed a federal lawsuit to stop the Texas governor’s day of prayer and fasting.

The organization which is made up of atheists and agnostics argues that Gov. Rick Perry is violating the constitutional ban on the government establishing a religion.

Perry has invited the Obama administration, the nation’s governors and Texas lawmakers to attend the prayer meeting in Houston on Aug. 6. The event is being sponsored by evangelical Christian groups and is explicitly a Christian event.

The foundation said Perry should not have organized the event as governor.

The suit was filed Wednesday at the federal courthouse in Houston. A spokesman for the event, called The Response, said he needed to consult an attorney before commenting. The governor’s office had no immediate comment.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Comments

One Comment

  1. Jan says:

    Now just wait a minute here,,, they have the freedom to express their thoughts, and we don’t?? We have equal rights to any and all persons. Not just atheists and agnostics. I’m just tired of this business of I can step on your freedom, but don’t you dare step on mine. Give me a break, I have the right to pray or not to pray and I intend to exercise it as I choose, not as someone elses chooses for me.

    1. Clair Bloom says:

      Governor or not, Perry has the right to participate in a prayer meeting that is sponsored, not by him, but by Christian groups. As a citizen, he is free to invite whoever he wants. By saying because he is governor he doesn’t have the freedom or right to do that, is denying him freedom of religion. He did not organize this event and is free to attend it, and to invite others to attend.
      Following this reasoning, Obama cannot call himself a Christian or participate in Christian events, nor can any other government official, whatever their religion.
      Where do you draw the line in separation of church and state? Do you vote only for atheists? This country was founded on Christian beliefs and principles. If you don’t like it, get out! We are in a war against people who want to destroy this country, whether they are atheists or terrorists and will use any means to do so.
      If I have to take sides, I will be on the side of love and forgiveness which is what Jesus Christ taught. I applaud Governor Perry for standing up for his beliefs. Would that more Christians would do the same.

      1. Gumby Rules says:

        Sorry Clair, you are not totally correct. Check out The Treaty of Tripoli signed by our second president John Adams which states,

        “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,…’

        And he WAS one of the formers of The Constitution, he WAS a founding father. He WAS there when this country WAS born, so i am guessing he should know a little about it.

        Now, before you shoot me, the messenger, I am a Christian and I really want the truth be told.

      2. drn says:

        Amen Clair Bloom!! And again I say AMEN!!
        You who don’t like it can LEAVE!!!!

    2. Bernard C. says:

      As long as State money is not involved I don’t give a s**t what the b*****d does. Under his leadership they have gutted education in Texas.

  2. Nonya says:

    The calls for tolerance almost always come from the most intolerant people or groups.

  3. Jan says:

    Just thought of something else, this is not a mandatory prayer day, so if you aren’t interested don’t attend. No one asked you to attend or be a part of it, but being the gracious folks we are, you are certainly welcome, if you can behave yourself. If you have a rally, you can bet I’m not going to sue you to stop it,,, because like it or not, your beliefs are a religion of sort also, and you are entitled to that. So just go away and leave prayer day alone, you miserable self center bugers

    1. Aaron Penrod says:

      The ignorance here is overwhelming. They’re not suing to stop the general public from praying. They’re suing to stop a government official from ripping the constitution into shreds. Perry is free to privately attend religious events, but he is not allowed to organize a public event as a government official.

      On the surface, this lawsuit sounds like an attack on Christianity and religion. In reality, this an attempt to protect the free practice of religion in this country.

      1. Dholt says:

        Until this year the United States of Americal held a national day of prayer on the first Thursday of May every year. Obama cancelled it this year but allowed the Muslims to have one. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Day_of_Prayer
        No one has ever been forced to participate.

  4. AC says:

    The problem is “it” isolates those that do not agree – seperation of church and state needs to be a very bold line

    1. Jeff D Johnson says:

      And that is where this group is not getting that part of the Constitution right. The government is not forcing a certain religion on anyone. This is being set up by someone and those of like beliefs are invited. Do Christians sue because a Muslim group has a rally or day and does not invite them? And as far as I have heard this is the only group having a problem with this event. No other religious group has come out against it.

      1. Robin says:

        So if Rick Perry had a Muslim prayer day you’d be ok with it? I think not.

  5. Rob says:

    Bottom line – Perry can pray as much as he’d like, but USING his ELECTED OFFICE to promote and invite the President CLEARLY violates the separation of CHURCH AND STATE.

    1. Jeff D Johnson says:

      No it doesn’t. He is not FORCING religion on anyone. He is INVITING others to attned. Huge difference.

      1. Robin says:

        His participation implies government approval of this religion. period.

      2. Jeff D Johnson says:

        Actually Robin, yes I would be fine with it.

    2. tom says:

      you are a fool

  6. gayden says:

    These freaks think that everyone should “do as they do”— or else. Why do we let these freakish people tell us what and when and where we may do anything? Tjhis is total BULL S**T as far as I am concerned and these Bast**ds had best keep out of my way or I will have them praying to the devil to make me stop.

    1. Robin says:

      Hi! We don’t care what YOU do. We care what people do as representatives in a government that has separation of church and state.:)

  7. Claire Armstrong says:

    Just leave this alone, it is bigger than you. Why don’t you plan one of your days. May God continue to Bless you and your family, even if you don’t believe it.

  8. TRISHA KAY says:

    WHEN ME AND MY SISTER WERE IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL IN DALLAS ,TX WE HAD PRAYER IN THE SCHOOL.IN THE MORNING THE PRINCIPAL SAID A PRAYER ON THE LOUD SPEAKER,AT LUNCH EVERYDAY A TEACHER (A DIFFERENT ONE EVERY DAY) STOOD UP AND SAID A PRAYER IN THE LUNCH ROOM WHILE THE STUDENTS WERE VERY QUITE AND PRAYED ALSO.OF COURSE THAT WAS BEFORE MADELYN OHARE(BIT_H) CHANGED THE LAW NO PRAYER IN THE SCHOOLS.I WISH IT HAD NEVER CHANGED.NO ONE WAS FORCED TO PRAY WE JUST DID.

    1. Robin says:

      Hi, when you type in all caps it comes across as yelling.

      1. tom says:

        someone needs to yell. the problems this country has and will continue to have is because we have said we no longer want God in our lives. well, you are going to find out just how horrible life is without God.

    2. Dave says:

      Actually, the law wasn’t changed to no prayer. It was changed that the school couldn’t mandate it. Do a little research before you type, you’ll look a lot less dumb.

  9. cass says:

    Really? Ok look I’m not a practicing Christian but his faith is a part of who he is and if he want to organize a prayer day for those who also practice his faith then so be it, it’s no skin off my nose. Now if he had made it mandatory for everyone in Texas that would have been doing. By taking away his right to practice his faith in this way you are taking them not to protect yourself, because it doesn’t effect you in any way, your just doing it to spit on their beliefs and stoke the fire. It had no bearing on you, so I say if it doesn’t include you stay the hell out of it.

  10. Jan says:

    OUR RELIGIOUS BELIEFS ARE NOT MANDATED TO US BY THE GOVERNMENT, WE AREN’T FORCED TO BELONG TO A CERTAIN CHURCH, PRAY IN A CERTAIN WAY, OR ATTEND SERVICES AT A SPECIFIC PLACE. THAT IS SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE. MOST ALL RELIGIONS HAVE SOME FORM OF PRAYER, AND HAVE THE RIGHT TO ENJOY THAT PRIVILEGE AS THEY CHOOSE, WHERE THEY CHOOSE AND WHEN THEN CHOOSE. I WILL NOT HAVE AN ATHEIST TELL ME I CANNOT ENJOY THAT RIGHT. AND WHETHER IT IS THE GOVERNOR, PRESIDENT, OR ANY ELECTED OFFICIAL, THEY HAVE PERSONAL RIGHTS AS WELL. IF GOVERNOR PERRY SAID, I AM SENDING YOU AN INVITATION ON THE LETTERHEAD OF THE GREAT STATE OF TEXAS, AND THIS IS AN OFFICIAL INVITE FROM ME AS THE GOVERNOR OF THIS STATE, AND YOU WILL BE REQUIRED TO ATTEND, THEN YOU HAVE SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE ISSUES. BUT RICK PERRY, HAPPENS TO BE GOVERNOR, WANTS TO DO SOMETHING NICE FOR THE WORLD AND GETS SUED??!! NOW THAT IS JUST STUPID

  11. Jan says:

    SORRY ABOUT THE ALL CAPS… NOT YELLING,,,,,,, YET

  12. kj says:

    The state was built on the beliefs of the church. You liked it enough to want to be a part of it (America), now you want it to be separate. I’m sorry but it doesn’t work that way. This country and the state were one in the same and should stay that way

    1. AC says:

      Really..does that include the foundation of Slavery? because that was one in the same for the country and the state. Things change even if you dont like it. Give it another hundred years or so, and we will look back at this just like we thought the world was flat…oh and by the way if you dared to say otherwise back then…they killed you, because you went against “their” faith.

  13. Red says:

    You are still walking around and spouting your mouth because there are people who believe in God and fear him, otherwise the strongest person or group throws kindness out the window and make their own rules. I am sure there is someone that you care about that is a drain on society and you are glad that people show their Godly side rather than the opposite when dealing with that individual. You just want to choose when having God in your life is ok while you keep saying there is no God.

  14. TRISHA KAY says:

    NO IT DOESNT COME ACROSS TO ALL PEOPLE AS YELLING.I HAVE A RIGHT TO USE ANYTHING AND SAY ANYTHING I WANT.SORRY I LIKE CAPS.SORRY BUT IM NOT YELLING IT IS JUST WHAT I DO.NOT TRYING TO OFFEND ANYONE,BUT THEN AGAIN NO ONES BUSINESS WHAT I DO.

    1. re: Trisha says:

      I thought you were yelling. Learn some internet etiquette.

  15. Jan says:

    His invitation as governor does not imply anything except that Rick Perry is saying if ya’ll would like to prayer, we’re going to get together and pray. Implying , implies assuming, and we all know what that means. Don’t assume, you have no idea why Rick Perry thought this was a good idea.

  16. kj says:

    sorry for the typo, this state and the CHURCH were one in the same, and should stay that way

  17. Jan says:

    So the school couldn’t mandate it???? They also cannot allow it…. hmmmmmmm, sounds an awful lot like they get you coming and going

  18. Cole Younger says:

    Perry is a fool …………………..

    1. tom says:

      no, you are!

    2. Cole Younger says:

      grow up Tom get a like fool

    3. Towlie says:

      You’re a towel!

  19. MB says:

    Religious nut-jobs shoving their crazy-ness down my throat.

    1. Jeff D Johnson says:

      How is anyone shoving anything down your throat? Don’t want to pray. Don’t/ Don’t want to attend the event. Don’t. No one is forcing anyone to do anything. Stop trying to act like your rights are being violated.

    2. tom says:

      then close your mouth

  20. Victoria Lynn Strickland says:

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion OR prohibiting the FREE exercise thereof.”

    US Constitution Amendment One

  21. Bernard C. says:

    Question: Who is paying for it? Texes has just gone through a budget sesion in which billions of dollars have been removed from education. If Perry is providing any State money at all for this event then it is illegal. That includes money for police protection to the event. If it were a privately paid for event then I got no problem with it but not one cent should be paid out of State coffers.

  22. Cole Younger says:

    Only thing he needs to pray for is that some fool dont take him out

  23. Alex says:

    Using your political office to endorse any religion is unconstitutional. If this was just about Rick Perry going to an evangelical christian conference the FFRF wouldn’t care.

    Once he puts links to the event on his government website, makes an introduction video to their website as a government employee, and makes radio advertisements for the event as the Governor of Texas – he has crossed the line from being “just another guy at the rally” to endorcing Christianity.

    Seems people here are missing the facts – read more at the link below, if you dare.

    http://ffrf.org/news/releases/federal-lawsuit-calls-gov.-perrys-prayer-association-illegal/

  24. Cole Younger says:

    Buddha is in my life ,dont know a God

  25. NiteNurse says:

    Oh yeah…Gov. Ricky is running for president with this stunt for sure! Everybody hang on Ricky is making a run!

  26. Thomas Brinson says:

    Damn if he does and Damn if he does not for the invite. Who cares where he goes whether in church or out of church at events, Will you be there probably not do not judge him if you do not make an choice to attend the event to see what happens. Where are the minds of Texas People when an few make them for you?

  27. L.S. Brown says:

    Matthew 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
    6:17 But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face;
    6:18 That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.

    I don’t know how much more plain and simple that can be. Keep your religion private and to yourselves. Keep the church out of government and government out of the church.

  28. chukee c. says:

    what part of illegal dont YOU people understand!

  29. Idiocracy says:

    There sure are a lot of ‘t@rded people online today…

  30. bill weber says:

    And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they
    love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that
    they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. King James Bible. Mathew 6:5 Governer Perry should disobey the words of Jesus on his own time not as a governor. When he uses his power as an elected official to follow or defy the words of religious leaders, he has crossed the line on government favor to or against religion. Any religions or spiritual beliefs that need government to further them are not worth following

  31. NiteWatering says:

    Check history, Church of England mutilated Jews for not converting to Christianity and others. In America there was the scarlet letter and burning of witches. That is why the founding fathers did not want religion involved in Government, they wanted a land anyone who believed anyway could live freely.
    As 4 prayers in schools I grew up in that age also and believe me some kids where ridiculed and left out in the cold over it. One was a Jew, because back then they did not embrace the New Testament and prayed differently than Christians did. So I was all 4 putting an end to that since it did have children hurting children, thus once again had religion harming people.
    If Perry has used a State site to promote this he has violated separation of church from state, if not then it’s his business and personal life.

    1. NiteNurse says:

      You know what you wrote is so well said. BUT I have lived in the belly of the bible belt most of my life and there is one thing I know for sure is folks around here take their Jesus seriously and if you don’t believe in what they believe in you are going to straight to hell! If my boss wants me to pray before every meeting then I do because I want to keep my job. If my boss asks me if I have been saved I lie and say I have. My bosses are allowed to cram their religion in my face but I don’t protest because I don’t want them to find a reason to fire me. In this part of the country they will ALWAYS side with the bible thumpers. We have to either live with it or go up to the northeast where freedom of religion is taken seriously.

      1. NiteWatering says:

        TU, I was born in Taxus but grew up not only in Taxus but in northeast and foreign nations due to military service. I have worked here several years and never ran into your situation, but if I had just like I wouldn’t roll tires out the door that could get people killed I wouldn’t lie just to have a job. I’d rather flip burgers to honestly pay the bills than I had to make more money doing something that I have to lie to do or needlessly harm people doing. But I understand why you would and why in the end we may all be forced to join your ways.
        Unfortunately your boss and those like him do not realize due to what they are demanding of employees, what they are doing is causing some people to sin in order to have a job, thus their God will not look very highly upon them when judgment comes. Jesus led by example and never once forced anyone coming to listen to him to pray, plus he never once asked for all those he fed in his sermons to be only Christians. Jesus gathered all types of people around him in hopes they would see the light. Rude awakening will come when today they realize God could have forced his laws to be the laws of the land even for Romans, yet he only wanted people to do it via choice and not laws.

  32. A says:

    Good! Keep your religion private and out of OUR politics and we can all coexist happily. You christians seem to be casually overlooking the fact that if a muslim governor organized a day of prayer like this, you’d be coming unglued. This isn’t about us atheists wanting to censor christians or anything even remotely like that, it’s about promoting a fair and secular government. Fair for EVERYONE, now just us, not just you. Secularism is the only way that can be achieved. You all are free to pray to whatever god(s) you want, and practice whatever religion you want, just keep it to yourself and out of the government and public services we all share. This is not a hard concept to understand.

    1. A says:

      typo correction: “not just us, not just you”

  33. NiteWatering says:

    This state was not founded on the church, investigate the Alamo where some of those who gave this state time to organize a battle where not Christians. The blood of those that died for a cause is what anything is founded on, not the ones that survived and organized the grounds for the living. So not only was this state not founded on the church, the nation was not founded on it either. Back then they really honored everyone who died for a cause, since they where true fighters and knew it took all types on a battle field. Do you really think the only ones on your battlefields today are Christians? With so many Christians how come our troops had to be recycled so much from the lack of new recruits and volunteers? None of the wars have ever been won solely by Christians in this Nation or states history.

  34. Connie Rauh says:

    Why not let the budhest pray to their god, the Islamist pray to their go and let the christians pray to jJesus.In case you have not understood, that is FREEDOM Of rwkigion.The reason our country is in a mess today is because non believers keep trying to take God out of everything. God doesn’t push himself on anyone. If you don’t wany God in your life, fine, but leave the resyt of us alone to worship the God we know and trust. I’ll put my God up against any other God God er God. Leave us alone, and we will respect you. The God we serve is the God of love. We know that if we call upon Him, He will save our country if we turn back from our sinful ways.

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