Secular message not well received as House of Reps daily prayer

Published June 6th, 2013 by Bobby Henderson


I like this — Arizona Rep. Juan Mendez offered the daily prayer at a floor session, and instead of God talk, he spoke about tolerance and the values we share as humans, and the duty of government to look past religious divisions:

Most prayers in this room begin with a request to bow your heads. I would like to ask that you not bow your heads. I would like to ask that you take a moment to look around the room at all of the men and women here, in this moment, sharing together this extraordinary experience of being alive and of dedicating ourselves to working toward improving the lives of the people in our state.

This is a room in which there are many challenging debates, many moments of tension, of ideological division, of frustration. But this is also a room where, as my secular humanist tradition stresses, by the very fact of being human, we have much more in common than we have differences. We share the same spectrum of potential for care, for compassion, for fear, for joy, for love.

What a great sentiment, and surely the members of the House, even if religious, appreciated such a positive message.

Except for Rep. Steve Smith, who felt it necessary to re-do the prayer the next day in repentance. What a douche.

Some articles:

About Rep. Mendez’s secular daily prayer

About Rep. Smith, butt-hurt, re-doing the prayer

I look forward to the day when Pastafarian members of the House can speak openly about their one True faith.

215 Responses to “Secular message not well received as House of Reps daily prayer”

  1. Richard Carrier says:

    The theses have been nailed to thine door, oh Bobius son of Hender! Woe to thee. A new revelation hath been revealed. History books will speak of this moment. Statues will be sculpted. Temples erected. My Little Ponies assembled. Children will be named after something. Cats and dogs will even live together. (Because that wasn’t a thing before now.) Behold. Lo. His Sauciness has bestowed upon us a new revelatory revelation, that hath now been revealed:


    Let all hear of His wisdom and repent. Ramen.

  2. Indian Law says:

    Isn’t world moving towards only 1 religion, that is humanity? :)

  3. KB says:

    What is this about care, compassion, and love? Are those really good things? At first blush, they are, but don’t they really harm our species by leading us to keep around the physically and mentally weak? Don’t they lead us to do irrational things, and make poor, illogical decisions? Be careful getting too taken up with care, compassion, and love – they are a gateway to the Christian God.

    • Keith says:

      For an animal that can remember further back than what it had for breakfast and with the ability to imagine what may happen in the future, care and compassion are useful survival strategies. Being forced to live in a social structure where we are all (relatively speaking) crammed into each others pockets means that if we do bad things to others, at some stage our actions will leap out and bite us on the arse. I know that the explanation sounds naive as there are many anti social types who don’t have compassion but to my mind it is a valid non god explanation. Others may have better explanations

  4. SillyKiwiMan says:

    That sounds about right to me, Keith! We are social animals, there’s a reason that the anti-social are on the fringes of society. Unfortunately, one of the side effects of our social structure is the practically inevitable rise of religion. It helps with maintenance of the power structure (hard to argue against one who claims to represent the divine, and can grant or refuse the favour of the gods) and offers explanations for shit that happens (when a mob is looking to someone to blame for a natural disaster).

    People call it karma (because they’re stupid, and don’t realise that karma pertains to the next incarnation, nothing to do with this one) but when I see someone doing good things (by my moral compass), I’m inclined to assist them should they need it. If you’re an arsehole, then I’ll let you suffer a while before rendering assistance (if you haven’t pissed me off too much).

    • Keith says:

      Religion certainly preys on the weak and desperate. I live in an economically depressed area and there is a baptist church less than a hundred yards away from me. There is also a child minding centre for mothers to drop their kids off to while they go to primary/ junior high school. If they were properly educated they’d be taught to keep their legs together.

  5. Zoro from Belgrade says:

    I am so happy because now we could find the direct way to the Heaven`s Serbia! Thank you a lot!

  6. M says:

    Juan Mendez – Democrat
    Steve Smith – Republican
    Not that it wasn’t obvious in the news.

  7. ImaJew says:

    I am a Jew and I respect the right to anyone to be a pastafarianist. Dont be ashamed! You decide.

  8. www.kineticd.com says:

    Hello, always i used to check webpage posts here early in the daylight, as i like to gain knowledge of more and more.

Leave a Reply