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Educators May Face Jail Time for Prayer

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posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 01:16 PM
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(Aug. 17) - Two Florida school administrators face contempt charges and possible prison time for saying a prayer at a school luncheon.
Frank Lay, principal of Pace High School, and Athletic Director Robert Freeman are accused of violating a consent decree banning employees of Santa Rosa County schools from endorsing religion.
They face a non-jury trial September 17 before U.S. District Judge Casey Rodgers. The statute under which they are charged carries a maximum penalty of up to six months in prison, subject to sentencing guidelines.
Attorneys defending Lay and Freeman call it outrageous that the two are being prosecuted for "a simple prayer." But the American Civil Liberties Union, whose lawsuit led to the consent decree, maintains that students have a right to be free from administrators foisting their religious beliefs on them.
Still, an ACLU representative said the organization never suggested that people should go to jail for violating the decree.
The ACLU filed suit last year against the district on behalf of two Pace students who alleged that "school officials regularly promoted religion and led prayers at school events," according to an ACLU statement.
Both parties approved the consent decree put in place January 9, under which district and school officials are "permanently prohibited from promoting, advancing, endorsing, participating in or causing prayers during or in conjunction with school events," the ACLU said.
Lay was a party in the initial lawsuit, and his attorney was among those approving the consent decree, according to the organization. In addition, the court required that all district employees receive a copy.
On January 28, "Lay asked Freeman to offer a prayer of blessing during a school-day luncheon for the dedication of a new fieldhouse at Pace High School," according to court documents. "Freeman complied with the request and offered the prayer at the event. It appears this was a school-sponsored event attended by students, faculty and community members."
Attorneys from Liberty Counsel, a conservative legal group helping defend Lay and Freeman, said in a written statement that attendees included booster club members and other adults who helped the field house project, all "consenting adults."
In a February 4 letter to district Superintendent Tim Wyrosdick in which Lay acknowledged the incident, he said that although past football booster club members "and other adults associated with the school system" were at the luncheon, culinary class students were in charge of food preparation and serving.
Lay wrote that he asked Freeman to bless the food "for the adults. ... I take full responsibility for this action. My actions were overt and not meant to circumvent any court order or constitutional mandate."
In response, Wyrosdick noted in a letter to Lay that in a meeting, the principal had admitted that "you are, and were at the date of this incident, aware of the court injunction and aware that this type of action is not permissible under the injunction."It is a sad day in America when school officials are criminally prosecuted for a prayer over a meal," said Mathew Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel and dean of the law school at Liberty University, founded by the late Rev. Jerry Falwell. "It is outrageous and an offense to the First Amendment to punish a school official for a simple prayer."news.aol.com...|main|dl1|link7 |http%3A%2F%2Fnews.aol.com%2Farticle%2Fschool-officials-may-face-jail-time-for%2F626406




posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 01:50 PM
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They're not facing jail time for praying. They're facing jail time for breaking the law.



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 02:24 PM
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reply to post by joe82
 


Here's the thing, no mention was made of which imaginary deity they were praying to.

I've no doubt in my mind that, should they have prayed to Allah in this instance, there would be cries of outrage from those who currently run to their defense.

Seems like the law is there for a good reason, so they shouldn't have broken the law.

perhaps jail time is a bit extreme but you never know they may want to be martyrs for jesus.



The law don't hate criminals just what they do.



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 02:27 PM
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reply to post by joe82
 


They should have simply lost their jobs, not been sent to jail over something like that. Religion should be kept out of schools, but its not that serious..



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 02:31 PM
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Oh well what are you going to do?

If the atheists are offended then we must all rush over to them to assure them that a few words with the word amen at the end won't hurt them.

Like I said, what are you going to do?



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 02:32 PM
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Originally posted by Miraj
reply to post by joe82
 


They should have simply lost their jobs, not been sent to jail over something like that. Religion should be kept out of schools, but its not that serious..


Lost their jobs? This was an event that was for the whole town, it wasnt strictly for the school.

You want to take away their lively hoods just because they said a bunch of words and said amen at the end?



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 02:36 PM
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If they were planning to eat that school luncheon THEY NEEDED that prayer! An Atheist



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 02:43 PM
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reply to post by jd140
 




You want to take away their lively hoods just because they said a bunch of words and said amen at the end?


Perhaps because Amen was an Egyptian god yahwheJesus decided to have them punished for heresy you know how jealous he/they gets.



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 02:46 PM
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reply to post by moocowman
 



Maybe so.

I think its very selfish for a person to take away the livelyhood of another individual because they said a harmless word. Its not as if their ears started to bleed and their brains turned to mush.............................well, maybe their brains did mush up a bit.



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 03:32 PM
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reply to post by jd140
 





I think its very selfish for a person to take away the livelyhood of another individual because they said a harmless word.


Well xtians were getting away with it for years not long ago I could have been fired for exclaiming "jesus" etc.

The harmlessness of a word or words is subjective my friend.

Like I said earlier if they were praying to Allah it would have been a different story and they would more than likely have lost their livelihoods over that.

If laws like these are applied sensibly, then hopefully these supernatural cults that plague our society will be kept at home or churches and synagogues where they belong.

If you want pray to your lunch then fine by me, but don't set an example to my children that this is rational behavior.



posted on Aug, 18 2009 @ 08:25 PM
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I believe in God/Jesus Christ, and I think that a little jail time serves them right. People are sent off in this country for various stupid reasons/laws why should this be the exception? I go to church fridays and sundays I don't pray for my food because I think God in His infinite glory knows what I'm thinking. He knows I'm grateful. But from time to time you have to say the words and tell Him you love Him out loud... for me it's Fridays and Sundays.... at Church.

[edit on 8/18/2009 by 3vilscript]



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 12:40 AM
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reply to post by 3vilscript
 



Wrong and completely wrong. You have no concept of the faith at all I'm afraid. The Bible says to 'pray unceasingly.' It also commands christians to share their faith with the lost.

This is outrageous. The first admendment has been trashed. The teachers are not required to follow a law that violates the first amendment and their ability to practice their religion. Giving thanks for food is part of that religion. You do not leave your religion on a coat-rack when you come through the door.

I'm disgusted that they can't get a trial by jury as also required by the constitution. There should be protests in front of the courthouse. Moreover it does not matter what this so called law dictates. The law of Christ supersedes it. Peter did not obey the Sanhedrin when they warned him to not preach the gospel. Neither should we obey any law that violates the gospel.

What has America come to?



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 03:45 PM
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Originally posted by SevenThunders
reply to post by 3vilscript
 



Wrong and completely wrong. You have no concept of the faith at all I'm afraid. The Bible says to 'pray unceasingly.' It also commands christians to share their faith with the lost.

This is outrageous. The first admendment has been trashed. The teachers are not required to follow a law that violates the first amendment and their ability to practice their religion. Giving thanks for food is part of that religion. You do not leave your religion on a coat-rack when you come through the door.

I'm disgusted that they can't get a trial by jury as also required by the constitution. There should be protests in front of the courthouse. Moreover it does not matter what this so called law dictates. The law of Christ supersedes it. Peter did not obey the Sanhedrin when they warned him to not preach the gospel. Neither should we obey any law that violates the gospel.

What has America come to?




Well if you want to speak in "terrestrial" terms, your First Amendment rights end where the next person's rights begin. I would hate for a Satanist to pray out loud for his food to Satan at school. Prayer, in my opinion, is a personal conversation with God. This is why one closes his/hers eyes and does it in silence... so that one can concentrate. Its something that I have always pondered while reading about how Jesus went up to the mountain to pray to the Father before he was arrested.

Now to the matter of faith. Faith, in my opinion, does not give one the excuse to throw Logic out the window. For example: You wouldn't kill in the name of God, right? Which is why I've always thought that Christians, Jews, Muslims, Mormons, and even the story of David is incorrect in saying its God will. The God I believe in and have faith in and is so much better than me, cannot have such basic 'Human' feelings.



posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 03:49 PM
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Originally posted by moocowman
reply to post by jd140
 





I think its very selfish for a person to take away the livelyhood of another individual because they said a harmless word.


Well xtians were getting away with it for years not long ago I could have been fired for exclaiming "jesus" etc.

The harmlessness of a word or words is subjective my friend.

Like I said earlier if they were praying to Allah it would have been a different story and they would more than likely have lost their livelihoods over that.

If laws like these are applied sensibly, then hopefully these supernatural cults that plague our society will be kept at home or churches and synagogues where they belong.

If you want pray to your lunch then fine by me, but don't set an example to my children that this is rational behavior.





Just because christians got away with it a while ago doesn't make it right to do the same to them.

Obviously you thought it was wrong to get fired for saying jesus in a derogatory way so why do you feel its okay to fire someone for saying it in a non derogatory way?



posted on Sep, 17 2009 @ 11:43 AM
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Lay and Freeman will appear in court Sept. 17. If convicted, Lay and Freeman could each face up to six months in jail or a $5,000 fine.


I just saw this on the news. I am, to say the least, infuriated. I am Christian and apparently, there are only a few of us in the world who can actually read. The Constitution of the United States is barred from prohibiting prayer in schools. No law making body in the US can order that there be no prayer in school. What am I talking about?



Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.


This is the First Amendment. Why is it the First? Because it's so damned important. This breaks three of the five points. The freedom to practice religion, the freedom of speech, and the freedom to petition the Gov for a redress of grievances.

You can't ask a man who lives his life according to scripture to ignore certain parts of it. I man chooses his own path, and if that path is in educating our children, so be it. Atheists, Muslims, etc... they are AFRAID. And they damn well should be. They're so insecure in their own belief systems that one man, apparently, can say a prayer, without addressing it to any god, and it will magically turn all the people of the world Christian.

I'm tired of the majority being forced to bow to the minority. You are free to believe in whatever god or in none. No one forced anyone at that assembly to listen, no one asked them to participate, and if there was an objection, it should have been voiced immediately. The ACLU is anti-civil liberty. These people are after money, after destruction, and in no way contribute to the good of the country.

The very same goes for the people that the ACLU filed the lawsuit on behalf of.

I don't stifle your religion, quit stifling mine.

I've often wondered how Atheist extremists, and Muslim extremists would have handled the Crusades. Not well, I would imagine. No one handled it well.

Go ahead, though. Keep on pushing us. In every tense situation, there is a breaking point. I'm all for peace. The bible tells Christians to turn away as often as you can. And we will.



"You have heard that it was said, 'Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.'[a] 39But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well.


But even we have our limits. The last time Christians were pushed past those limits, the years are referred to globally as The Dark Ages.



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