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Thread: Separation of church and state

  1. #71
    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy View Post
    That's absurd.

    So if a teacher were to say a blessing over their food during lunch he or she would be trying to convert the entire lunchroom to their religion? lol.... Sheesh is right.
    I'm talking about prayers to the Lord Jesus, Jeremy. What would a Jewish student, or a Muslim student, or a Buddhist student, or a Hindu student, or a......gosh, is there even ANY point in TRYING to discuss such matters with you? Do you even understand that other people have DIFFERENT religions, and that they have a fundamental RIGHT to those different religions?!??
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  2. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Jeffrey View Post
    When a government employee does so while in the course and scope of his/her employment, it is absolutely the same.
    No it is not.

    For example: a teacher saying a blessing over his or her meal while at school is in no way endorsing a religion.

    Its an individual practicing their religion in public - which is actually a constitutional right.

  3. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigLeRoy View Post
    I'm talking about prayers to the Lord Jesus, Jeremy. What would a Jewish student, or a Muslim student, or a Buddhist student, or a Hindu student, or a......gosh, is there even ANY point in TRYING to discuss such matters with you? Do you even understand that other people have DIFFERENT religions, and that they have a fundamental RIGHT to those different religions?!??
    As I added - I am not talking about a teacher leading a class in prayer. I was distracted the first time I read it (my ferret escaped).

    That's an entirely different matter.

    I am talking about people practicing their religion as an individual.

    I would oppose any instruction for the class to pray or anything like that.
    Last edited by Jeremy; 23rd April 2018 at 03:29 PM.

  4. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Jeffrey View Post
    and is exactly an accurate description of the Establishment Clause.
    No it isn't.

    The first amendment states that congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.

    No where even remotely does it suggest teachers may not pray in public or while at their jobs. In fact - it says the opposite - and that any law that attempted to prohibit their free exercise of religion would be unconstitutional.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Jeffrey View Post

    Nobody is saying government employees may "only practice their religion in private," and it is intellectually dishonest to say anyone is. What I (for myself, at least) am saying is that one may not use one's government position for the purpose of proselytizing. It has nothing to do with "public versus private." This discussion would not be occurring if not for the fact that a certain sect of the population wishes to use the government, and public schools in particular, as religious schools tasked with training students in a particular religion.
    Yes they are - so it's not intellectually dishonest (you really like that phrase don't you).

    They are saying that teachers have to wait until they get home and in private to pray (go read their comments if you don't believe me).

    And an individual freely practicing their religion is not proselytizing. As an example (I'll stick to the one I've been using) if I were to say a blessing over my meal during lunch time that doesn't mean I am trying to convert everyone around me into my religion. And it's silly to suggest that I am.
    Last edited by Jeremy; 23rd April 2018 at 03:28 PM.

  5. #75
    Spock of Vulcan Ian Jeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy View Post
    What's intellectually dishonest is to claim I said things I never said.

    What I actually said in that quote was setting up a state religion is a long way from forbidding teachers from praying in front of students. And yes, it is.
    No, it is not. The teachers are not MERELY "praying in front of students." By doing so in the course and scope of their employment, it is teaching them religion and training them in it.

    Furthermore, the Establishment Clause is not limited to the formal setting up of an official government religion, and has never been limited to that.

  6. #76
    Radical Centrist BigLeRoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy View Post
    As I added - I am not talking about a teacher leading a class in prayer. I was distracted the first time I read it (my ferret escaped).

    That's an entirely different matter.

    I am talking about people practicing their religion as an individual.

    I would oppose any instruction for the class to pray or anything like that.
    OK, then. As I said, I have no objection to a teacher praying at their desk, presuming it is not interfering with their teaching duties. I have no objection to students gathering at the flagpole to pray before school begins, as they do at some schools. I have no objection to after-school Bible study clubs using school classrooms, as long as equal access is granted to students who wish to form clubs for other non-religious purposes. The government should be NEUTRAL with regard to religion. This is one of the major PRINCIPLES that the Supreme Court has in fact laid down.
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  7. #77
    Spock of Vulcan Ian Jeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy View Post
    [P]eople expressing themselves is not the same as making a law that respects an establishment of religion.
    Public school teachers praying while in front of their respective classrooms are not "expressing themselves." They are proselytizing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Claudius the God View Post
    I recall that for the first 50 years or so, we had states actually practicing, promoting and supporting their state religion legally. In some cases, everyone was paying a mandatory tithe to the state church. As the states grew and became more diverse, these laws and practices fell away for a more egalitarian and secular view of church and state. We simply out grew it and moved on which benefited us tremendously.
    And that I would oppose. State religions or creating law that recognize certain religious institutions is certainly unconstitutional.

    But so is stripping an individual of their free exercise rights simply because they work for a public school or government agency.

    The first amendment applies to all Americans no matter where they work.

  9. #79
    Spock of Vulcan Ian Jeffrey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy View Post
    No it is not.

    For example: a teacher saying a blessing over his or her meal while at school is in no way endorsing a religion.

    Its an individual practicing their religion in public - which is actually a constitutional right.
    That is not "in the course and scope of one's employment." The teacher is technically "at work," but is not working. It is while around other people, but effectively private because no one else is paying attention (unless a group of teachers got together in the teachers' lunchroom or whatever). But if it is announced to everyone, it becomes public and, if there are students present, within the scope of one's employment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Jeffrey View Post
    Public school teachers praying while in front of their respective classrooms are not "expressing themselves." They are proselytizing.
    No they aren't.

    To proselytize means you are attempting to recruit or convert someone into your religion.

    Simply praying in front of others is not proselytizing. That's just practicing your faith in public as I said - and there is nothing in the first amendment that forbids that. On the contrary - it says we have a right to it.

    This idea that we have to practice our religion in private otherwise we are proselytizing sounds ridiculous to me. And praying in public certainly isn't creating a law that respects an establishment of religion - which is actually what the first amendment says.
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