In full-page ad in today’s Washington Post

FFRF protests National Day of Prayer


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The Freedom From Religion Foundation is taking its objections to the annual National Day of Prayer to "pious politicians" in the seat of federal government, via a full-page ad in today's Washington Post.

"When we have faith in ourselves, we won't need faith in gods," is the homily of the national association of freethinkers (atheists and agnostics), working as a state/church watchdog.

The ad, headlined "God & Government A Dangerous Mix," runs in the Post's front section. It features images and words of two past presidents: John F. Kennedy ("I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute") and Thomas Jefferson ( "Question with boldness even the existence of a God").

FFRF advises prayerful public officials to "Get off your knees and get to work."

Congress adopted the National Day of Prayer at the demand of Rev. Billy Graham, and codified the date in 1988 as the first Thursday in May at the behest of other evangelicals. FFRF sued the president and won a historic federal court ruling in its favor in 2010, vacated later on other grounds. In that ruling, U.S. District Judge Barbara Crabb wrote that in enacting the National Day of Prayer, "the government has taken sides on a matter that must be left to individual conscience." Last spring, a state appeals court in Colorado agreed with FFRF that the Colorado Day of Prayer gubernatorial proclamations are unconstitutional.

FFRF's ad warns: "There is no such source and cause of strife, quarrel, fights, malignant opposition, persecution, and war, and all evil in the state, as religion."

FFRF, the nation's largest association of freethinkers with more than 19,000 members, notes: "The U.S. president and elected officials have neither the moral nor the constitutional authority to exhort citizens to pray and to gather with others 'to turn to God in prayer.' "

FFRF adds: "Nothing fails like prayer. The solutions to humanity's problems won't ever come from above. It's time to place our best energies in making this world better, this world our paradise."

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The Freedom From Religion Foundation, based in Madison, Wis., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational charity, is the nation's largest association of freethinkers (atheists, agnostics), and has been working since 1978 to keep religion and government separate.

FFRF is a non-profit, educational organization. All dues and donations are deductible for income-tax purposes.

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