It is unbelievable, but the question of if we have a right to pray in public has once again gone to the Supreme Court.
The Court ruled that is was within the right of legislative bodies like city councils to offer a prayer. The decision stems from a case in a county in Maryland where protestors wanted prayer eliminated from the opening of meetings. Opponents objected to the practice because prayers there had become openly Christian in nature.
The Supreme Court was divided on the issue and only a five to four vote resulted in the decision being that prayer did not violate the Constitution's ban on government endorsement of religion by allowing Christian prayers before meetings. The court did say that prayers should not be phrased as to attempt to intimidate, coerce or convert nonbelievers. There are more cases pending in the court system so the debate is not over by any means, but praying before a city council meeting or commissioners court is a right that we have as citizens to acknowledge our Creator.
It is not establishing a state religion and if you don’t want to pray or participate, then don’t. There are many things we encounter in life that some may not agree with, so, again, if you don’t want to participate, then don’t. But making this a legal challenge hurts all. Keeping prayer a legal part of our gatherings is right and it makes for a Better East Texas.