Separation of Church and State.
Dear Mayor Gruendl:
On July 2, 2013, I had occasion to visit the Chico City Council regularly scheduled meeting.
At the beginning of the meeting you called to the podium a religious leader to deliver an invocation. Later, I visited the City of Chico web site and found many council meetings in which a small sample of our community’s religious leaders delivered a predominantly Christian evangelical message to the council and audience.
I’m very troubled by the continuing introduction of religion into the beginning of every city council meeting. The 1st amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America clearly states that there shall be no establishment of religion by our governments.
The 1st amendment is but one sentence long and the United Sates Supreme Court has ruled that such invocations violate the 1st amendment to the US Constitution:
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
I have also observed that the Butte County Board of Supervisors does not have any such invocation. They have a moment of silence at the beginning of each meeting so that ALL in the audience can take a moment to focus on whatever their belief system might be or, one can just meditate on the silence.
Mr. Mayor, please consider our community’s request, signed by a variety of religious, spiritual, and secular Chico residents, to cease invocations and instead offer a moment of silence or nothing at all.
FFRF - Freedom From Religion Foundation is with us. Read their letter to the Mayor of Chico ! Click here.
Coordinator, Butte County Coalition of Reason