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  • Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) A federal judge in Wisconsin ruled the National Day of Prayer unconstitutional Thursday, saying the day amounts to a call for religious action.
    U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb wrote that the government can no more enact laws supporting a day of prayer than it can encourage citizens to fast during Ramadan, attend a synagogue or practice magic.

    "In fact, it is because the nature of prayer is so personal and can have such a powerful effect on a community that the government may not use its authority to try to influence an individual's decision whether and when to pray," Crabb wrote.

    Congress established the day in 1952 and in 1988 set the first Thursday in May as the day for presidents to issue proclamations asking Americans to pray. The Freedom From Religion Foundation, a Madison-based group of atheists and agnostics, filed a lawsuit against the federal government in 2008 arguing the day violated the separation of church and state. Full USA Today article
    I'm personally sick to death of this ongoing legal battle over religion and government. My problem is that what this represents is a battle between two extreme ends of the spectrum that don't represent America as a whole, both sides are basically irrational zealots and equally insane in my opinion.

    The Christian-right has become so pathetically extreme in their version of Christianity - blind support for war, Israel, neo-con philosophy, and many other non-Christ-like activities - that they make such an easy target for equally extreme groups on the other side. Therefore, we have this sort of never-ending polarizing battle that is such a waste of time, energy, and resources.

    The athiest and seperation of church and state activists have spent so much time on this issue, but there are so many other human and social issues that are of greater importance. Equally, the so-called Christian activists have wasted their resources with political action groups, media campaigns, and judgement - not biblical by the way -of other groups of people. All of wich would be better spent on issues of poverty and human rights, something more in-line with the New Testament priciples that Christ spoke of.

    The Gospels of Christ and the thoughts of Jefferson are not what we have today in America. What we have are two seperate but equally radical groups who spend vast amounts of resources in a battle that echoes neither of the two philosophies. And, all the money they spend trying to one-up each other could be spent on something worthwhile.

    Here's a word of advice to both sides of this debate. Go help the poor or feed the homeless, promote civil rights and liberties, speak out against injustice. Stop peddling cheap, divisive, wedge-issue rhetoric. Rise above your differences and come together for the good of the country. Otherwise, shut-the-hell-up.

    On the issue of the Nationa Day of Prayer being unconstitutional. It's probably not, but really I could care less. It's all just such a waste of time.
    |TG-X| mp40x



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  • #2
    Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

    Also from the article:
    Crabb wrote that her ruling was not a judgment on the value of prayer. She noted government involvement in prayer may be constitutional if the conduct serves a "significant secular purpose" and doesn't amount to a call for religious action. But the National Day of Prayer crosses that line, she wrote.

    "It goes beyond mere 'acknowledgment' of religion because its sole purpose is to encourage all citizens to engage in prayer, an inherently religious exercise that serves no secular function in this context," she wrote. "In this instance, the government has taken sides on a matter that must be left to individual conscience."
    I agree 100% with the judge, it's about time.

    Having a designated time to allow for prayer or contemplation is fine. Asking people to take religious action is not. Jut because the law has been around forever doesn't mean that it can't be ruled unconstitutional, just like segregation.

    Why don't reporter's link to the actual decision or legal text easily found with a simple google search? That's just lazy.
    http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/us...9----000-.html < - law text
    http://www.wnd.com/files/dayofprayer.pdf < - opinion of the judge
    |TG-6th|Snooggums

    Just because everyone does something does not mean that it is right to do.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

      Irony: vehement attack on the pointlessness of debate posted to internet debate forum.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

        Originally posted by mp40x View Post
        On the issue of the Nationa Day of Prayer being unconstitutional. It's probably not, but really I could care less. It's all just such a waste of time.
        If only we had a government branch dedicated to addressing the laws, even their constitutionality, so that people that don't care don't have to get involved and the ones that do can see their concerns addressed.
        |TG-6th|Snooggums

        Just because everyone does something does not mean that it is right to do.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

          Interestingly we had a similar something yesterday in the UK with a critical decision about freedom of speech and media; that being a science Journalist who had been done for Liable by a science organisation. Who took it to to appeal and was victorious as it was overturned:

          “Lord Judge, the Lord Chief Justice, said doing otherwise could turn the courts into an 'Orwellian Ministry of Truth'.”

          http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...#ixzz0lHg68JsN

          Interestingly, this tabloid seems more broadsheet for once (likely caused by being thankfull), than the very broadsheet the journalist was working for, in reporting the news, especially it seems the final get out paragraph.

          http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/20...l-case-dropped

          Speaking of journalism and manic debates, isn't it 'couldn't care less' and not 'could care less'? As it was when I last looked in an English book when I studied teaching English to non-native speakers but seems a craze here and seems really crazy - another truth for the truth mind Orwellian Ministry of Truth mind truth people!

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

            Originally posted by sordavie View Post
            Irony: vehement attack on the pointlessness of debate posted to internet debate forum.
            Yes, that's my rant-of-the-month. I'll leave it to you guys to debate it if you like, just didn't feel like properly addressing the issue this time. Instead, I felt more like bashing the so-called Christians and zealot Atheists - who are constantly embattled - over the head with a sledgehammer. My prerogative. :)
            |TG-X| mp40x



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            • #7
              Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

              So, you're the zealot anti-zealot Christian anti-zealot Atheist? Nothing wrong with rants. Pointless rants against what you perceive as pointless rants or debates are kind of self-defeating. The problem is you haven't really hit anyone over the head with a sledgehammer. Perhaps with one of these, but it came back and hit you as well:

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                Originally posted by sordavie View Post
                So, you're the zealot anti-zealot Christian anti-zealot Atheist? Nothing wrong with rants. Pointless rants against what you perceive as pointless rants or debates are kind of self-defeating. The problem is you didn't really hit anyone over the head with a sledgehammer. Perhaps with one of these, but it came back and hit you as well
                Ahh, I see. Just not happy with anything, is that it. You come off looking like someone with a HUGE axe to grind with me personally. Take my post for whatever it is. You don't like it, I don't care. As usual - not in every case though - you just look like a bomb-thrower. Good day.
                |TG-X| mp40x



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                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                  lol I guess you missed my point. I just found the contents of your rant ironic and funny in a failblog sort of way. I do like the contents of failblog, so it must be that I like the contents of your post too. It made me laugh.

                  Your response now makes me laugh some more. It's like a fail within a fail.

                  If this were on facebook, it would totally be on failbook.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                    Originally posted by sordavie View Post
                    lol I guess you missed my point. I just found the contents of your rant ironic and funny in a failblog sort of way. I do like the contents of failblog, so it must be that I like the contents of your post too. It made me laugh.

                    Your response now makes me laugh some more. It's like a fail within a fail.

                    If this were on facebook, it would totally be on failbook.
                    Good. I'm glad you totally had a good time to reading it, because I totally enjoyed ranting about it. Now, I think I'll totally drink a Diet Coke.
                    |TG-X| mp40x



                    Register for the Forums! | Get on Teamspeak! | Play Squad! | Join Discord! | Support Tactical Gamer!

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                    • #11
                      Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                      PS. I'll try one more time to get you to see what's so funny about your post.

                      What you've done is what's called a performative or pragmatic contradiction: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perform...contradiction; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contrad...contradictions. In short, a pragmatic contradiction is one where the very act of making the speech contradicts the contents of the speech. The wiki examples are decent enough. Commanding that "you should not obey others" is a pragmatic contradiction because in asserting that you're intention is to get others to obey your command. But of course the very act of commanding is undermined by the contents of what you've just commanded. It's funny when someone does this without realizing it! It's pure unadulterated irony. Asserting that "knowledge is impossible" is a pragmatic contradiction because in asserting that you imply that you know it, which undermines the very contents of what's asserted.

                      You've done the same thing in your original post. You'd performed a pragmatic contradiction. In asserting that people ought to be spending their time on human and social issues of much greater importance on an internet sandbox forum, you undermine the very statement which you intend to express. If your statement is right, then you yourself ought not be on here asserting it. Rather you ought to be spending your time on human and social issues of much greater importance.

                      Your advice to them is the prime example, "Here's a word of advice to both sides of this debate. Go help the poor or feed the homeless, promote civil rights and liberties, speak out against injustice. Stop peddling cheap, divisive, wedge-issue rhetoric. Rise above your differences and come together for the good of the country. Otherwise, shut-the-hell-up." Here you are, on the TG sandbox forum posting this advice which is contrary to the very thing that you advise.

                      Perhaps you're not humored by irony. Lots of people are. I am. Saying something that contradicts your act of saying it is pure irony. It's much funnier than when someone says something sarcastically. And it's rare too. Pragmatic contradictions are generally hard to come by, because mostly they are quite obvious and people recognize they shouldn't be making them - or at least there's something really strange about making them. So that's what you did. Thanks for giving me a dose of laughs. That's really all I wanted to point out. I said nothing about agreeing or disagreeing with you, or about some side I'm taking, or about some axe I'm grinding. I just found the original post genuinely funny because of it's ironic content. Misunderstanding me or not recognizing the pragmatic contradiction you've made after I've pointed it out in your later posts is kind of funny but not as funny, and certainly not due to any ironic content. I guess irony just really cracks me up, and either you aren't cracked up by it or you don't realize you've just done it. :(

                      Mocking someone by imitation or parroting is pretty elementary schoolish. It's not really a good comeback, even if you did try to throw some irony - in the form of sarcasm - in there. At least you correctly italicized the word you wanted to emphasize and parrot rather than scare quotes. Although, had you done the latter, it would have been a really funny piece of irony, worthy of the unnecessary quotes blog.
                      Last edited by sordavie; 04-16-2010, 02:59 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                        Freedom from religion is just as important as freedom of religion.
                        Do or do not, there is no try....
                        -- Yoda, Dagobah

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                          Originally posted by sordavie View Post
                          PS. I'll try one more time to get you to see what's so funny about your post.

                          What you've done is what's called a performative or pragmatic contradiction: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perform...contradiction; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contrad...contradictions. In short, a pragmatic contradiction is one where the very act of making the speech contradicts the contents of the speech. The wiki examples are decent enough. Commanding that "you should not obey others" is a pragmatic contradiction because in asserting that you're intention is to get others to obey your command. But of course the very act of commanding is undermined by the contents of what you've just commanded. It's funny when someone does this without realizing it! It's pure unadulterated irony. Asserting that "knowledge is impossible" is a pragmatic contradiction because in asserting that you imply that you know it, which undermines the very contents of what's asserted.

                          You've done the same thing in your original post. You'd performed a pragmatic contradiction. In asserting that people ought to be spending their time on human and social issues of much greater importance on an internet sandbox forum, you undermine the very statement which you intend to express. If your statement is right, then you yourself ought not be on here asserting it. Rather you ought to be spending your time on human and social issues of much greater importance.

                          Indeed, you've performed a number of them. In asserting, in your rant, that you couldn't care less, you undermine the contents of your rant. That's because you intend to be pointing out something that you really care about - namely, the waste of time and effort of these two groups. If your assertion that you couldn't care less is right, then you should have no motivation to come here and post the rant in the first place - pragmatic contradiction. Why are you so sensitive about any kind of response you got if you couldn't care less anyway? :p Irony.

                          Perhaps you're not humored by irony. Lots of people are. I am. Saying something that contradicts your act of saying it is pure irony. It's much funnier than when someone says something sarcastically. And it's rare too. Pragmatic contradictions are generally hard to come by, because mostly they are quite obvious and people recognize they shouldn't be making them - or at least there's something really strange about making them. So that's what you did. Thanks for giving me a dose of laughs. That's really all I wanted to point out. I said nothing about agreeing or disagreeing with you, or about some side I'm taking, or about some axe I'm grinding. I just found the original post genuinely funny because of it's ironic content. Misunderstanding me or not recognizing the pragmatic contradiction you've made after I've pointed it out in your later posts is kind of funny but not as funny, and certainly not due to any ironic content. I guess irony just really cracks me up. :(

                          Mocking someone by imitation or parroting is pretty elementary schoolish. It's not really a good comeback, even if you did try to throw some irony - in the form of sarcasm - in there. At least you correctly italicized the word you wanted to emphasize and parrot rather than scare quotes. Although, had you done the latter, it would have been a really funny piece of irony, worthy of the unnecessary quotes blog.
                          Wow, and here I thought I was just expressing my opinion. Who could have known that all that literary contradiction was in there. But you know, don't you? Because that's what you do in this forum.

                          Here's what happened today. I wrote a post about something that bothers me. What do you do? Get pissy about the whole thing. First, you make an comment about irony, wich is fine. I respond with a comment and a smile. Second, you start attacking me, and it seemed kind of personal - wich you later say was all just a joke. I respond by calling you a bomb-thrower - wich isn't that far from the truth. Then, you say it was all a joke and that I didn't get it. Now, your writing three pargraphs about how everything I said was a big contradiction in literary terms.

                          Let me explain something to you. I'm not familiar with the terms performative or pragmatic contradiction. The last time I set foot in a classroom was 1989. You can use correct grammar and literary terms to attack everyone who posts in this forum, I'm sure. But, is that really something you want to be known for? I'm not guiltless of course of making my own attacks, but I choose not go after the literary structure of peoples comments. That would just be boring in my opinion, not to metion that I could probably not recognize it either.
                          |TG-X| mp40x



                          Register for the Forums! | Get on Teamspeak! | Play Squad! | Join Discord! | Support Tactical Gamer!

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                          • #14
                            Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                            @mp40x
                            He's saying that you spending the time to start a debate thread about other people wasting their time debating something you don't think is important is funny because you are initiating people spending more time focusing on the issue you think isn't important. While sordavie often uses the most lengthy academic explanation possible instead of stating things plainly for those of us whose field isn't academia, he wasn't just using big words to use big words but to state it as accurately as possible.

                            Short layperson's comparison: A similar situation to your original post would be writing a letter to the editor stating that writing letters to the editor is a waste of time and people should be doing something more important.
                            |TG-6th|Snooggums

                            Just because everyone does something does not mean that it is right to do.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Judge rules National Day of Prayer unconstitutional

                              I agree with the points in the OP and do not find it ironic :)

                              The point wasn't “people should only do important stuff”. TG is entertainment, and entertaining oneself isn’t annoying. I think he was saying (amongst other things) that when spending time "fighting for change", a lot of people pick some relatively unimportant [and hypocritical] things to get hyped about.

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