I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.
Monday, August 11, 2014
What Does Greece v Galloway Say About Prayers before a Meeting?
From the Decision in Grecce v Galloway, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the following for the 5-4 majority--upholding the right of governmental bodies to have secterian prayer before meetings: "the context and jurisprudence surrounding the First Amendment suggested that the Establishment Clause was never meant to prohibit legislative prayer, which created the proper deliberative mood and acknowledged religion’s role in society. The content of this prayer does not need to be non-sectarian, because such a requirement would place the courts in the role of arbiters of religious speech, which would involve the government in religion to an extent that is impermissible under the Establishment Clause. The Court thus held that the prayers in question do not violate this tradition and are therefore acceptable under the First Amendment...legislative prayer is primarily for the members of the legislative body, and therefore such prayers do not coerce the public into religious observance." Read more here Read about the other famous case dealing with prayer before a legislative assembly, Marsh v. Chamber, here