Susan Stamper Brown

The hysterical reaction to Republican presidential hopeful Governor Rick Perry's faith is about as overblown as his home state of Texas is big. Perry is facing a federal lawsuit filed by the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) - purportedly because Perry prayed publicly for our nation.

America is headed south to a place much hotter than Texas, and you would think national figures offering prayers for the nation would be a source of inspiration. Even still, FFRF filed the lawsuit to prevent the beckoning of blessing from the God of whom this country was founded.

Filing the lawsuit in the Southern District Court of Texas, the FFRF argued the prayer event Perry attended violated the First Amendment's Establishment Claus. They claimed it could be "harmful or counterproductive as a substitute for reasoned action." What does that even mean? If you put the collective brain power of the current leadership in Washington into the body of a hummingbird, it would fly backwards, and yet a call to prayer on their behalf is "counterproductive" to reasoned action?

The very concept of separation of church and state is intellectually dishonest and legally indefensible. Even still, activists attempt to two-step their way around the Constitution in hopes to eradicate America's Judeo-Christian roots and replace them with their own "irreligion."

The simpler solution would be for groups such as the FFRF to accept the fact that prayer has weaved its way into the moral fiber of America since her inception. British colonists fled to America to escape religious intolerance. The first prayer of the Continental Congress, in 1774, clearly laid out our founders intentions in the words: "O Lord our Heavenly Father...we beseech Thee, on these our American States, who have fled to Thee from the rod of the oppressor...desiring to be henceforth dependent only on Thee. Be Thou present...and direct the councils of this honorable assembly...All this we ask in the name...of Jesus Christ, Thy Son and our Savior. Amen."

The Bill of Rights (the first ten Constitutional amendments) was ratified December 15, 1791. Amendment I speaks to the protection from federal interference in the free exercise of religion, speech, and the press, among other freedoms. Although the term "separation of church and state" cannot be found in the Constitution, activists who seem to be about as friendly as fire ants to America's Judeo-Christian roots borrowed words from and built case law around a letter Thomas Jefferson wrote to church leaders in 1802 mentioning "a wall of separation."


Susan Stamper Brown

Susan Stamper Brown's weekly column is nationally syndicated. She can be reached at writestamper@gmail.com or via her website at susan@susanstamperbrown.com. Her Facebook page can be found here.