Senior citizens at the Ed Young Senior Citizens Center near Savannah, Georgia receive reduced-price meals partly paid for with federal money.
Because of that, they’re being told they can’t pray before meals:
… Senior Citizens Inc. officials said Friday the meals they are contracted by the city to provide to Ed Young visitors are mostly covered with federal money, which ushers in the burden of separating church and state.
On Thursday, the usual open prayer before meals at the center was traded in for a moment of silence.
The dilemma is being hashed out by the Port Wentworth city attorney, said Mayor Glenn “Pig” Jones.
First of all… yes, I know. That’s his name.
Secondly, what is so hard about this?
If the seniors want to pray before a meal, fine. Let them pray. No one has to lead it. You don’t need to block off special time for then. You don’t need a moment of silence, either. Just let them pray. Or not. Whatever they want.
This is not that complicated.
They’re jumping from one side (organized prayer) to the other (“NO PRAYER FOR YOU!”) and ignoring the fact that there is a perfectly fine middle ground.
Actually, the company providing the food insists they never told the seniors they can’t pray:
“It’s interpreted that we’re telling people that they can’t pray, but we aren’t saying that,” he said. “We’re asking them to pray to themselves. Have that moment of silence.”
So really, it’s the mayor and a few seniors pretending to be victims. They’re not. No one is taking their right to pray away from them.
Which means former State Senator Eric Johnson and Piggy Jones are full of shit when they say the following:
“I told them they’re not fighting this alone,” Johnson, a Republican, told FoxNews.com. “To heck with the federal government — we can’t stop people from free practice of their faith.”
“This country means a lot to me, but the part that I don’t respect is it telling me I cannot pray over my meal,” Jones said. “I can’t accept and look them 65- and 70-year-olds in the eyes and tell them they cannot pray and bless their meals.”
Like I said, it’s not a complicated case. No one is forcing the seniors to not pray… but I guess when you need to get the attention of the electorate, you can stir up whatever fake controversy you want.
(Thanks to Drake for the link!)