Barry, regarding the National Day of Prayer, it is certainly strong evidence that a practice is consistent with the First Amendment if it predates the Amendment and was supported by our Founding Fathers. This is especially true where, as here, no coercion is involved. No person is forced to pray, or not pray, by the government (nor should they be).


While it is clear that you disagree with the government’s decision to continue the National Day of Prayer, the fact is that it is constitutional for the government to do so. The current makeup of our nation’s religious demographics does not justify rewriting or reinterpreting the Constitution to invalidate longstanding traditions like the appointment of legislative chaplains, the opening of legislative sessions with prayer, or the declaration of national days of prayer and thanksgiving. People who believe that these centuries-old traditions should be abandoned are free to state their case to their elected officials, but the courts should not invalidate such practices by ignoring the historical background of the First Amendment.


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