By Hemant Mehta
Republicans in the Florida legislature are attempting to pass a bill that would force the state’s athletic association to permit Christian prayers over the loudspeakers during football games.
It’s an unconstitutional bill right from the start, but they’re trying to appease the Christian Right, laws be damned.
All of this stems from a 2015 controversy. That December, two private Christian schools made it all the way to the championship game in the state’s class 2A football playoffs. Before the game, one of the school administrators wanted to say prayers over the public address system. But the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA), which oversees all games, correctly said no. This was a state-run event. It was televised. It was at a public facility. It would be illegal for Christians to hijack the loudspeaker system for religious purposes.
Obviously no one was stopping the Christian players and coaches from praying on their own, but conservative Christians don’t believe prayer counts unless they force it upon everyone else.
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