Wednesday, August 15, 2012

"Right to Pray" Amendment Passes in Missouri

The state of Missouri just passed what on the surface seems like a relatively common-sense measure, but which in reality will likely be used to further marginalize religious minorities - the so-called "right to pray" amendment. Critics of the amendment also point out that it is unnecessary, as religious freedom is already protected by the Bill of Rights.

Although the measure does not (and, in fact, cannot under the US Constitution) single out any one religion, it was pushed by many of the same Christian groups that bizarrely believe the very existence of non-Christian faiths constitutes some sort of threat. Generally speaking, since these groups believe themselves to be constantly under attack, their ability to deal with religions other than their own tends to be quite limited.

The amendment’s official ballot title:

Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended to ensure:

• That the right of Missouri citizens to express their religious beliefs shall not be infringed;

• That school children have the right to pray and acknowledge God voluntarily in their schools; and

• That all public schools shall display the Bill of Rights of the United States Constitution

Freedom of speech and religion are already protected under the Bill of Rights, and critics of the bill called it unnecessary and a push to trample religious minorities. Republican lawmakers pursued the measure as a clarification of doubt.

As I mentioned in a previous comment, I would so love to see a Thelemic kid decide to run with this and, say, recite Aleister Crowley's Prayer of the Aeon to open a school assembly - because then we would really see if the supporters of this amendment are serious about protecting religious freedom. My guess is that they would totally freak out on the spot and tip their hands.

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Hypnovatos said...

I think you could teach your child to read the Lords Prayer in Aramaic and the "Christians" would freak out thinking that Anton LaVey had reincarnated and was reciting verses at school :p

Scott Stenwick said...

That would be great. Then, when they start accusing you of being a Satanist, point out that the Lord's Prayer in Aramaic was in Passion of the Christ so as a good Christian they should know better. Then look at them like they're a bunch of ignorant fools.