The trouble is, the Chatham County Commissioners think they do have the right to pray to Jesus. By letter, the ACLU of North Carolina reminded them of the Establishment Clause and, in particular, of a recent 4th Circuit case making it very clear that they are out of line.
"No one is going to tell me how to pray," said Chairman Bunkey Morgan. Said Commissioner Tommy Emerson, incredibly: "I talked to a Jewish person about it, and he had no problem with the Lord's Prayer."
Commisisoner Carl Outz: "I always thought if they didn't like [the prayer], they could step outside."
No, commissioner, that's now how it works. Outside is not where the meeting is. Did you read the case the ACLU sent you? It happened in Great Falls, South Carolina. A non-Christian woman had reason to attend Town Council meetings. (She happened to be a Wiccan.) She played along for a few meetings, bowing her head, then got tired of faking it. Once she came in late to avoid the prayer. She was not allowed to speak even though she had signed up in advance.
The 4th Circuit could not have been more clear that the goverenment body was improperly advancing one religion "in preference to others." What's so hard to understand?
Well, down in Great Falls thay had some trouble understanding it too.