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View Full Version : ACLU tries to halt mealtime prayer at Naval Academy



megimoo
06-25-2008, 09:34 PM
ACLU:A national civil liberties group is renewing a push to end mealtime prayer at the U.S. Naval Academy, where a group of midshipmen recently complained to officials that they felt pressured to participate in the longtime practice.

The tradition, believed to date back to the college's founding in 1845, now involves a chaplain's leading grace before a noon meal that all 4,200 midshipmen must attend at King Hall. Midshipmen are not required to pray, though they must stand during the recital, and most bow their heads.

Nine students recently approached the American Civil Liberties Union for help in getting the academy to end the practice. In a letter recently sent to the academy's superintendent, Vice Adm. Jeffrey L. Fowler, the ACLU threatened legal action.

"The government should not be in the business of compelling religious observance, particularly in military academies, where students can feel coerced by senior students and officials and risk the loss of leadership opportunities for following their conscience," Deborah A. Jeon, legal director for the ACLU of Maryland,

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/education/college/bal-prayer0625,0,5200587.story

jinxmchue
06-25-2008, 11:01 PM
ACLU:A national civil liberties group is renewing a push to end mealtime prayer at the U.S. Naval Academy, where a group of midshipmen recently complained to officials that they felt pressured to participate in the longtime practice.

The tradition, believed to date back to the college's founding in 1845, now involves a chaplain's leading grace before a noon meal that all 4,200 midshipmen must attend at King Hall. Midshipmen are not required to pray, though they must stand during the recital, and most bow their heads.

Nine students recently approached the American Civil Liberties Union for help in getting the academy to end the practice. In a letter recently sent to the academy's superintendent, Vice Adm. Jeffrey L. Fowler, the ACLU threatened legal action.

"The government should not be in the business of compelling religious observance, particularly in military academies, where students can feel coerced by senior students and officials and risk the loss of leadership opportunities for following their conscience," Deborah A. Jeon, legal director for the ACLU of Maryland,

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/education/college/bal-prayer0625,0,5200587.story

The ACLU should not be in the business of forcing people to not pray contrary to their First Amendment rights.

Odysseus
06-26-2008, 12:51 AM
The ACLU should not be in the business of forcing people to not pray contrary to their First Amendment rights.

And midshipmen should not be filing lawsuits against their academy. I cannot imagine what kind of officers they expect to be if their response to every decision that they dislike involves lawyers and activists.

LogansPapa
06-26-2008, 10:53 AM
These midshipmen don’t know of this fine tradition when they’re coming in? Give me a break!:rolleyes:

wilbur
06-26-2008, 12:24 PM
It's stupid that they had to go this far. Get prayer out of schools.

Molon Labe
06-26-2008, 12:58 PM
And midshipmen should not be filing lawsuits against their academy. I cannot imagine what kind of officers they expect to be if their response to every decision that they dislike involves lawyers and activists.

We can agree on this. :)
It's tyranny of the minority over standards and tradition.

People should get it out of their heads that this nation was supposed to be devoid of religion.
Institutions and society can be as religious as they want....but it's specifically about establishing one. The founders wanted to make sure that there was never again somehting like the Church of England.
That is all..l

MrsSmith
06-26-2008, 08:37 PM
The tradition, believed to date back to the college's founding in 1845, now involves a chaplain's leading grace before a noon meal that all 4,200 midshipmen must attend at King Hall. Midshipmen are not required to pray, though they must stand during the recital, and most bow their heads.

Nine students

2.14% of the current midshipmen have a problem with a ceremony that is over a century and a half old...so the rest of the 4191 midshipmen will be denied their right to enjoy it, in the name of "fairness."

Odysseus
06-26-2008, 08:55 PM
2.14% of the current midshipmen have a problem with a ceremony that is over a century and a half old...so the rest of the 4191 midshipmen will be denied their right to enjoy it, in the name of "fairness."

I can't speak to the Naval Academy's traditions, but the army has chaplains leading non-denominational prayers before certain events (most big ceremonies, for example). Nobody is ordered to pray, but it is required that you respect those who do. What bothers me is that that these midshipmen are buying into a mindset that it is okay for a minute minority to impose their will on a huge majority through the application of grievance mongering. That kind of attitude makes an officer a real nuisance to his/her command. They really need to look at their commitment to the navy.

The other thing that's annoying about this is the hypocrisy of the ACLU. If this were a Moslem institution, they'd have no problem with people being compelled to stand by and show respect during prayers.

MrsSmith
06-26-2008, 10:01 PM
I can't speak to the Naval Academy's traditions, but the army has chaplains leading non-denominational prayers before certain events (most big ceremonies, for example). Nobody is ordered to pray, but it is required that you respect those who do. What bothers me is that that these midshipmen are buying into a mindset that it is okay for a minute minority to impose their will on a huge majority through the application of grievance mongering. That kind of attitude makes an officer a real nuisance to his/her command. They really need to look at their commitment to the navy.

The other thing that's annoying about this is the hypocrisy of the ACLU. If this were a Moslem institution, they'd have no problem with people being compelled to stand by and show respect during prayers.

Christianity doesn't fit under the "diversity" umbrella. :rolleyes: