Atheists Not Injured by Jan Brewer's Prayers, State Appeals Court Says

Categories: Religulous
NoPrayerGovernment.jpg
atheists.org
Atheists did not prove that Governor Jan Brewer's annual "Day of Prayer" proclamations caused them injury, a state appeals court says.

The appeals court affirmed the Maricopa County Superior Court ruling dismissing the lawsuit, which was brought by the Freedom From Religion Foundation and other groups.

See also:
County Judge: Jan Brewer Didn't Injure Atheists With Her Prayers

The three appeals court judges concurred that the atheists' claim of injury didn't really fly.

The opinion from Judge Donn Kessler says Brewer's proclamations are not a "direct attack" on anyone's belief system, they don't have to change their behavior to avoid the proclamations, and there was never an allegation that Brewer's proclamations affected how the atheists interacted with state government.

"Indeed, there is no allegation regarding how the Appellants even learned about the proclamations or that the alleged harm to them was anything more than a general feeling of second-class citizenship and outsider status," the opinion states.

There were other problems with the suit cited by the appellate panel, but the injury section is where they really got slammed.

"Given the plaintiffs' string of legal defeats in both federal and state court, I am hopeful today's ruling will be the final word on this issue," Brewer says in a statement.

The court's opinion can be found below:



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71 comments
DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

    Religion = Superstitious Nonsense for Ignorant Simpletons


skeptic4321
skeptic4321

And, what is a day of "prayer", really? Is it not a day of magical thinking with invocations to imaginary beings?

Joe Kennedy
Joe Kennedy

Do you see the first three letters in the word ASSume? I was not speaking to you and if I was I would refer to you as Garyn. So it looks as though what funny is your reading comprehension skills.

skeptic4321
skeptic4321

The issue is not injury- this country is not a theocracy - our government should not show preference of religion over non religion or one religious sect over another or religion over non religion and

skeptic4321
skeptic4321

The issue is not injury- this country is not a theocracy - our government should not show preference of religion over non religion or one religious sect over another or religion over non religion and

skeptic4321
skeptic4321

Contrary to what the theocrats are trying to force on everyone else (monotheism), this country is not a theocracy. Our government should not show preference of one religious sect over another or of religion over non religion. A day of prayer in the context of a government forum clearly sends a message of government preference of religion over non religion. The issue of injury is raised by spineless judges who are either Christians who are ok with theocracy or who are afraid of the Christian backlash.

Joe Kennedy
Joe Kennedy

I'm not angry at all, just a realist.

Jay Ruffner
Jay Ruffner

You scare me a little bit Joe. You are an angry atheist. And while I don't share your angry belief system, I still respect it! GO JOE!

azface
azface

Have a day of prayer for a terrorist?  He just killed a lot of innocent people in Oklahoma.  But I guess he had his reasons.  Wish we could protect the homeland from God.

azface
azface

Have a day of prayer for a terrorist?  He just killed a lot of innocent people in Oklahoma.  But I guess he had his reasons.  Wish we could protect the homeland from God.

Garyn Klasek
Garyn Klasek

Joe, i'm assuming the "atheist who respects beliefs" is me. Again, i've never claimed to be one so saying i'm a bad one is just funny. Obviously, beliefs can be interpreted, so not every christian is a hateful bigot, although i'll lay claim to countering nazis, zionists, or any other extremists as well as any other sexist/racist/homophobic assholes. I do, however, respect people's beliefs so long as they're worthy of respect (like buddhism and native american beliefs, for example).

Joe Kennedy
Joe Kennedy

Prayer never was in the school system unless you went to a Catholic school. " God " want added to the pledge until 1954 when this country's politicians went nuts because they were afraid communists were coming in to take over. Prayer as a moral lesson is hilarious, there it's nothing less moral than done pic the story's in that storybook (bible), incest, death and fear are not moral compasses, they are something to run from and they are all in that storybook. And yes it works to brainwash those with something missing is their drab lives.

Joe Kennedy
Joe Kennedy

Why would anyone respect belief systems that glorify hate, bigotry, death and is the most hypocritical thing on the planet? You can respect the person as a human, but there is no need to respect a belief system.

Joe Kennedy
Joe Kennedy

You're not an actual Atheist if you say Atheists follow any religion especially their own. That's about the strangest thing I've ever heard or read out of anyone that calls themselves an Atheist .Religion is the reason we are Atheists to begin with. And I respect all humans, but to say you respect someone's " belief " the second most strangest thing I've heard or read from someone that claims to be an Atheist. Why would any REAL Atheist respect a belief system that is full of lies and misconceptions, not to mention hate and bigotry? You sir are no Atheist. But nice try. It sounds as though you are questioning yourself IMO.

Garyn Klasek
Garyn Klasek

Jay, I think you're missing the point here and I haven't thought of myself as an atheist since I was a kid. I have friends and family of varying beliefs and I've always managed to respect their beliefs even as a non-believer. I can't really see atheists trying to prevent prayer IN POLITICS as equatable to the general elimination of prayer, nor do I see it as insulting. The insult is silly people who claim to believe in a nation that IDEOLOGICALLY was built on separating church and state. Personally, I have NO faith in the Church or the state, but that doesn't mean that I don't respect other people's beliefs, including prayer. I just believe that the blending of church and state proves how much of a joke government is.

Natasha M Martinez
Natasha M Martinez

i totally support prayer, can we bring prayer and moral lessons back into our school system.maybe the pledge then a moment for prayer and a moral lesson.how can people hate on prayer ?if you dont believe thats fine but its not hurting anyone.it actually does work

Brian James Omalley
Brian James Omalley

Hey, don't we have bigger fish to fry here? Or do we enjoy being spied on?

Jay Ruffner
Jay Ruffner

I've never understood angry athiests. I am an athiest, albeit a happy one. I respect people of faith and sometimes consider how much easier life would be if I could believe in a higher power. It seems to me many athiests follow the religion of athiesm as opposed to a live and let live approach. The stamping out of prayer and insulting of someone else's beliefs seems to me a shallow battle that serves noone.

Jason W. Ground
Jason W. Ground

Well... since prayer is completely useless how could it hurt anyone?

Joe Kennedy
Joe Kennedy

We all know that prayer is always the best fix for REALITY based issues. Well if you're a fool.

robert_graham
robert_graham topcommenter

Fact is, if the athiests don't like prayer they don't have to listen to it. They have no case!

Maggie Shaw
Maggie Shaw

I think that the men who penned the Constitution had good reasons for wanting to keep church and state separated. I for one, do not begrudge people talking to invisible friends, but I find it difficult to put my trust in those who would do so. As a non believer, I am inundated daily with "god bless yous" and "praise gods". Everywhere I drive I see the steeples and the bill boards advertising for various brands of imaginary friend adoration. I love my country. I believe in the Constitution. I wish we could get past superstition and Bronze Age myths and start using our reason to fix the problems. Praying for help is just infantile.

Marc Severson
Marc Severson

I'll pray -- pray we survive nutcase Brewer!

Dario Loredo
Dario Loredo

How about a day of reason. On that day the Arizona Science museum free of charge to kids? I strongly oppose her idea.

Garyn Klasek
Garyn Klasek

I don't know what's more pathetic: people who believe in joining church and state or those who don't but believe in government nonetheless..

oscaroscaroscar
oscaroscaroscar

If GED Jan needs to talk to invisible sky man, let her...she probably hears all kinds of voices anyway..glug glug glug.

AZ Ducky
AZ Ducky

I will accept her day of prayer, if she will accept my 364 days of no prayers

Alyssa Vetter
Alyssa Vetter

Why do religious people need a "day of prayer"? Aren't they doing their religious duty and praying every day? I guess Ms. Brewer doesn't think so. Keep religion where it belongs - in your house or in your church! Keep religion out of my government!

Jeff Ramon
Jeff Ramon

Nothing wrong with prayer and if you want to believe in nothing that's your problem.

José Roberto Orellana
José Roberto Orellana

Hypocrite, she needs to show the love of Christ in her actions. Not only in declaring a day of prayer.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@skeptic4321 It's also a day of suggesting that all "good" people believe in such nonsense.


valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@Joe Kennedy 

Rather than making people guess who you're talking to, click the "Reply" link below the post you're responding to.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@Natasha M Martinez Morality is being taught in our schools, particularly respect for and tolerance of others, which are not included in the Christian top 10 rules.

I don't "hate" prayer any more than I hate it when people make wishes before blowing out candles.  It's just silly superstition.  When it becomes a problem is when the government chooses to endorse prayer, establishing those who pray as being somehow better citizens than those who do not.  That's a violation of the Establishment Clause.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@Brian James Omalley  Having other problems, even "bigger" ones, isn't justification for allowing abuses to continue.  Multitask.


DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Jay Ruffner 

Atheism =/= Religion

hth.

dogon
dogon

@JoeArpaioFan  exactly! Now all we need to do is figure out which of the thousands of gods we are going to be praying to. Or should it be all of them? No that would take too long. HMMM perhaps we shouldn't pray to any of them and actually concentrate on getting some fucking work done.

robert_graham
robert_graham topcommenter

@Marc Severson Feeling a bit athiest today? I hope God strilkes you dead!

robert_graham
robert_graham topcommenter

@AZ Ducky If you don't like prayer then don't listen to it. I don't like rap music so can I get that banned?

robert_graham
robert_graham topcommenter

@Alyssa Vetter And keep you fucking opinions to yourself.

yourproductsucks
yourproductsucks

@valleynative AN invitation to pray in no way creates 2nd class citizenry.  Typically atheists are intelligible and approach matters logically.  There is no class warfare here. Stop making something out of nothing.

dogon
dogon

@JoeArpaioFan Well actually we all die eventually, so if you want to believe your telepathic communication with your particular deity has something to do with it then  who"s to say you're wrong.

sarum
sarum

@valleynative @yourproductsucks I have to disagree on the 2nd class citizenry point.  When I was a kid the neighborhood kids would gang up on us and scream at us that we were going to hell cuz we weren't going to church. Also they taught us about Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny and all the other good Christian things we were missing - it starts very young.  It is very painful for kids, especially if the parents have not  substituted the loss with some other form of community or large likeminded family at least.  A prayer can bring up all that bullying, ostracism, and in some cases even death is caused by acting out religious based bigotry - so yes, saying a prayer  can create a hostile work environment and create extreme stress which the logical mind must work hard to refute.  

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@yourproductsucks @valleynative  The judges in this case even admitted that the day of prayer made atheists feel like second class citizens, but failed to recognize that as a problem.  Justice O'Connor wrote a pretty good paper on the subject and why it is a violation of the establishment clause.

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