There is no God. The Absence of God: Church and State Are Not Seperate

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Church and State Are Not Seperate

The following article shows what happens when the government actually tries to separate religion from events.
NYC Mayor Bloomberg Under Fire for Banning Religion at 9/11 Ceremony
by Dakota O'Leary
August 25, 2011

Facing sharp criticism from his deputy mayor and various pastors, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has refused to allow members of the clergy to participate in the city's commemoration of the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Bloomberg wants the focus of the day to be on the 9/11 families, and he is also banning political speech during the day. The Wall Street Journal and Newsmax reports:

"This is America, and to have a memorial service where there's no prayer, this appears to be insanity to me," said Rudy Washington, a deputy mayor under Bloomberg’s predecessor Rudy Giuliani, who organized a nationally televised interfaith ceremony at Yankee Stadium in the days after the 2001 attacks.

"I feel like America has lost its way," added Washington. “I am very upset about it. This is crazy.”

New York City Council member Fernando Cabrera, a pastor in the Bronx, said faith was one of the “pillars that carried us through” the days after the attacks and called religious leaders “the spiritual and emotional backbone.”

“When you have a situation where people are trying to find meaning, where something is bigger than them, when you have a crisis of this level, they often look to the clergy," added Cabrera, who said excluding religious leaders from the ceremony was "wiping out the recognition of the importance that spirituality plays on that day."

Bloomberg, who is himself Jewish, would like the tone of the memorial ceremony to be like that of previous years when the lack of religious participation has gone largely unnoticed. However, because this year marks a decade since the tragedy, the event is already facing much more publicity.

Poetry will be recited, and the names of the dead read out during the ceremony. Bloomberg is proving to be a controversial political figure; he has supported the display of the "World Trade Center Cross" despite protests from the atheist community, and he has also supported the right of Muslims to build Park51, a community center 2 blocks from Ground Zero.

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