Northwest Voices | Letters to the Editor
Prayer in legislative session ignites controversy
Separation of church and state, not commentary, is the issue
Our incredibly diverse nation holds together amid powerful forces pulling from all directions [“Invocation stirs dust-up on opening day,” News, Jan. 15]. The fact that we allow this contention is what makes us a great nation. We must preserve the equilibrium by allowing individuals to express their opinions, whether we agree or not.
Pastor Jon Sanné’s prayer is a perfect opportunity for debate. I heartily disagree with him, but if he wants to be an outspoken dogmatist, he has every right to do so. If he wants to come to a legislative session and espouse his narrow-minded views in debate over legislation, he has every right to do so. He should not have the right to address the legislative session in prayer.
The issue exposed in the opening of the 2013 legislative session is not about a man saying what he believes to be true. The issue is about church and state and keeping them separate.
Sen. Ed Murray misspoke when he said Sanné’s commentary “has no business being included in a prayer before this institution.” The point is that prayer has no business being included before a public institution.
--Thom Harrington, Seattle