Three people were arrested Thursday after staging a noisy protest as a Hindu chaplain read the opening prayer at the US Senate, branding his appearance an “abomination.”
US Capitol Police said the protestors, apparently Christian religious activists, were ejected from the chamber and charged with an unlawful disruption of Congress.
As Hindu chaplain Rajan Zed started to recite his prayer, one protestor was heard chanting “Lord Jesus, forgive us father for allowing a prayer which is an abomination in your sight.
“You are the one, true living God.”
Faith leaders from various creeds are sometimes invited to give the Senate’s daily opening prayer, though it is normally offered by the chamber’s Christian chaplain.
The pressure group Americans United for Separation of Church and State condemned the protest.
“This shows the intolerance of many Religious Right activists,” said the group’s executive director, Reverend Barry Lynn.
“They say they want more religion in the public square, but it’s clear they mean only their religion.”
Here’s the video of the protest.
I’m absolutely loving Pope Benedict. He’s the George W. Bush of the Catholic Church by constantly putting his foot in his mouth.
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Critics say Pope Benedict, in several recent controversial moves, is turning the Roman Catholic Church’s clock back by half a century and alienating Muslims, Jews and Protestants in the process.
Supporters say that by allowing a wider use of the Latin Mass and reasserting Catholic primacy over other religions, he is trying to revitalize his 1.1 billion-member church and prepare it for an uncertain future.
“Basically, what we are in the grip of at the moment, and Benedict is one of the engineers of this, is what I would call a strong re-assertion of traditional Catholic identity,” said John Allen, author of several books on the church and the Vatican.
Some saw his decision to allow a wider use of the old-style Latin Mass as a blow to the reforms of the 1962-65 Second Vatican Council, which substituted Latin for local languages, modernized the church and encouraged inter-religious dialogue.
Catholics who thought the days of incense and dead languages were behind them were puzzled. Jews voiced concern over the possible use of prayers for their conversion in the old Mass.
Benedict also approved a document which said all other Christian denominations apart from Catholicism were wounded and not full churches of Jesus Christ, drawing the ire of a number of Protestant groups who said it would hurt dialogue.
From the AZStarnet.com:
PHOENIX — State lawmakers voted Monday to enact new laws designed to stop the sale of anti-war T-shirts with the names of dead soldiers — a measure a veteran media lawyer says is “unconstitutional about three or four different ways.”
On a 28-0 margin, the Senate agreed to make it punishable by up to a year in jail to use the names of deceased soldiers to help sell goods. The measure, SB 1014, also would let families go to court to stop the sales and collect damages.
Dan Frazier, a Flagstaff businessman who is selling the T-shirts that have caused all the fuss, told Capitol Media Services he doesn’t intend to halt the sale of the $20 shirts even if Gov. Janet Napolitano signs the measure. He said it’s an illegal infringement on his First Amendment rights.
Rep. Jonathan Paton, R-Tucson, a backer of the measure, doesn’t see it that way. He said because Frazier is selling his shirts for a profit means it is not constitutionally protected political speech.
But attorney Dan Barr said the question of whether someone makes money is legally irrelevant.
“The fact that these people died in Iraq is nothing more than a fact,” Barr said. And he said listing their names on a T-shirt — whether sold or given away — doesn’t change that.
The shirts at issue feature the words “Bush Lied/They Died” superimposed over the names of more than 3,000 soldiers who have died since the U.S. invaded Iraq. Frazier has since come up with some variants, including one that says on one side “Support our Remaining Troops,” with “Bring the Rest Home Alive” on the other.
They’ve been banned in Oklahoma and Louisiana and there is federal legislation pending in Congress to ban sales of the t-shirt in the rest of the country.
So lawmakers can get together to stop a sale of a t-shirt but are impotent when it comes to stopping the actual war? Here’s where you can buy the t-shirt.
A blog that brings you a daily dose of skulls.
A blog about this person’s crazy roomate:
At the beginning of this year, the new guy at work needed a place to live. I ended up letting him sublet one of the rooms in my house. After only a couple of days it became obvious that he is totally insane. The crazy constantly flows from his mouth and is just way too good to not share with the world. Names have been changed to protect the innocent, but other than that – all of the conversations are damn near verbatim.