That Government and Prayer Thing
I was going to stay out of the fray over prayer at city council meetings but, since Marc Matteoli brought it up last night...
Most of us know a lawsuit is being filed against the City of Eureka by an atheist, Carole Beaton, who wants to end the practice of invocation at city council meetings. I'm not sure that this should be fodder for a lawsuit, but I'd like to see invocations ended. Maybe not for the same reasons the atheist gal does, but I do find them annoying.
I am not comfortable with religion. I see no point in religious reference being used for the start of a city council meeting. There's no need for it. It's a waste of time. Those that are into that sort of thing can do it before or after the meeting. It's a distraction, at best, that shouldn't have any place in a government meeting.
It's like smoking. While I am a smoker, I don't have a problem with smoking being prohibited in government buildings. I can always smoke elsewhere, just not in a government building. Perhaps not the best analogy, but no harm done by restricting some personal preferences while tending to government business.
People need to deal with government at some point or another in their lives. When they do, they shouldn't be subjected to annoyances that don't work towards accomplishment of that government business. Do the government business and move on.
As far as the Mayor being able to hold or attend prayer meetings, I don't see a problem with that. I'm not sure I even have a problem with it if he did it in the city council chambers, so long as it wasn't during a city council meeting and attendance was voluntary.