They have the same confusion in Greece, New York, the Greece of Greece v Galloway, as Sarah Posner reports in Aljazeera America.
In Greece, supporters of the town’s position insist the religious freedom of Christians is at stake.
Pastor Vince DiPaola of Greece’s Lakeshore Church, who has delivered invocations at the council meetings, said the “majority of people certainly believe in God in our community. The majority of people would believe in Jesus Christ. And so it represents our community, and it would be pathetic if our community could not even express itself in that way.”
No it wouldn’t. They can express it in their churches…and at home, and out in the street, and any number of places. They don’t need to make it part of the town government, and doing so takes away the freedom of the minority. It’s the minority that needs protection from coercion, not the majority. Saying it’s a majority thing therefore it should sweep all before it is the very opposite of protecting religious freedom.
Posner quotes several religious people who do understand that.
Pastor Courtney Krueger of First Baptist Church of Pendleton, S.C., a town of 3,000 people, said his town’s council does not open its sessions with any prayer.
“Sectarian prayers don’t serve any positive purpose in official government settings,” he said. Not having legislative prayers, he said, “is the way it should be.”
“The last thing I’d want to do,” Glaze said, would be to pray in a manner that suggested to any citizens attending the meeting that their “interests are not as fully represented here” or that they were “not welcome.”
That, he added, “would really break my heart.”