Observations on the world today.

Friday, October 12, 2007

As the Hypocrites Do 

This post over at Atrios reminds me of a story. First the post.
Moment of Silence

Let me put on my "reasonable liberal" hat and say that I don't think a mandated moment of silence is a big deal as long as it isn't accompanied by any suggestion that it be used for prayer. I mean, I think a mandated moment of silence in schools is stupid policy, but I don't think it crosses any constitutional lines. Certainly it's less offensive than mandating a pledge with the "under God" phrase intact.

I grew up doing it in PA - not sure if it was mandated or just common practice - and it never really bothered this atheist. The time my 5th grade teacher asked me to say grace before lunch during a field trip did, however. Asshole.
Now for the story.

When I was in high school before each assembly a student recited a bible verse and then lead the students in the lords prayer prayer. As a junior, I took a newly offerred speech class, and it was decided that speech students would be responsible for this "honor." Eventually the honor fell to me. So I read the following bible verse:
Matthew 6: 5 - 6

And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites [are]: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
I then said that anybody who wanted to was free to recite the Lord's prayer. "Our Father...," I said and then I stood silently as the hypocrites prayed openly.

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