Perhaps some of you have received the following viral e-mail...
Subject: Andy Rooney and God
or as it's usually sent,
Subject: Andy Rooney and Prayer
Andy Rooney says: (so the email claims)
I don't believe in Santa Claus, but I'm not going to sue somebody for singing a Ho-Ho-Ho song in December. I don't agree with Darwin , but I didn't go out and hire a lawyer when my high school teacher taught his Theory of Evolution.
Life, liberty or your pursuit of happiness will not be endangered because someone says a 30-second prayer before a football game. So what's the big deal? It's not like somebody is up there reading the entire Book of Acts. They're just talking to a God they believe in and asking him to grant safety to the players on the field and the fans going home from the game.
But it's a Christian prayer, some will argue.
Yes, and this is the United States of America , a country founded on Christian principles. According to our very own phone book, Christian churches outnumber all others better than 200-to-1. So what would you expect -- somebody chanting Hare Krishna?
If I went to a soccer game in Baghdad , I would expect to hear a Muslim prayer.
If I went to a ping pong match in China , I would expect to hear someone pray to Buddha.
And I wouldn't be offended. It wouldn't bother me one bit.. When in Rome .....
But what about the atheists? Is another argument.
What about them? Nobody is asking them to be baptized. We're not going to pass the collection plate. Just humor us for 30 seconds. If that's asking too much, bring a Walkman or a pair of ear plugs. Go to the bathroom. Visit the concession stand. Call your lawyer!
Unfortunately, one or two will make that call. One or two will tell thousands what they can and cannot do. I don't think a short prayer at a football game is going to shake the world's foundations.
Christians are just sick and tired of turning the other cheek while our courts strip us of all our rights. Our parents and grandparents taught us to pray before eating, to pray before we go to sleep. Our Bible tells us to pray without ceasing. Now a handful of people and their lawyers are telling us to cease praying.
God, help us. And if that last sentence offends you, well, just sue me.
The silent majority has been silent too long. It's time we tell that one or two who scream loud enough to be heard that the vast majority doesn't care what they want. It is time that the majority
Rules! It's time we tell them, 'You don't have to pray; you don't have to say the Pledge of Allegiance; you don't have to believe in God or attend services that honor Him. That is your right, and we will honor your right; but by golly, you are no longer going to take our rights away'. We are fighting back, and we WILL WIN!
God bless us one and all ... Especially those who denounce Him , God bless America, despite all her faults. She is still the greatest nation of all. God bless our service men who are fighting to protect our right to pray and worship God.
Let's make 2010 the year the silent majority is heard and we put God back as the foundation of our families and institutions . And our military forces come home from all the wars.
Keep looking up. If you agree with this, please pass it on.
If you are among the many out there who believe this, agreed with this and took the time to pass it on than I'm sorry to have to tell you this (well not really) but this e-mail you've chosen to forward is actually a Hoax. Whoever wrote this e-mail is, at the very least, committing fraud, and I might add, obviously having a good laugh at the expense of the religious right.
I knew it had to be a joke the moment I started to read it since, as any good atheist knows, Andy Rooney is a well established and well known Agnostic/Atheist.
May I suggest you read his book, "Sincerely, Andy Rooney" published in 1999. Or just Google Andy Rooney-atheist, or check out the discussion on this subject at snoops or click on the following Wikipedia link... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andy_Rooney and scroll down to the section titled "Views" where they discuss the fact that Andy Rooney has been a self-proclaimed Agnostic most of his adult life and has more recently, as of 2008, declared himself to be a full-fledged Atheist.
This whole situation is so outrageous that it begs the question, is the Christian right so hard up to have a credible spokesperson that they actually have to make one up? I guess they are when their best-known representatives are the likes of the barely educated Sarah Palin (Miss I went to Five schools in Six years and Finally got a Four year degree). Or Rush Limbaugh who never finished school at all. Or even better still, the Reverend Pat Robertson, who seems to believe, preach and teach that earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes and disease only visit the sinful and the wicked.
Yes, I guess when that's the best you've got, you'd do anything, even commit fraud - if you had to; just to claim that a bright, clever, educated and insightful man like Andy Rooney shared your point of view. Even when it's so obvious that he doesn't, couldn't and wouldn't.
Even without taking the time to research this viral e-mail for errors. It should be obvious to most people that it's filled with inaccuracies.
For instance, China Is a Communist/Atheist State and as such does not permit prayers to Buddha or any other deity at its public events. I should think most people would know that, unless of course they are ignorantly confusing mainland China with its bitter enemy Tibet.
As I reread the e-mail, it becomes increasingly apparent that rather than endorsing prayer. It's actually Mocking it while it trivializes religion in general. Take for example, the whole thing about Christians should stop turning the other cheek; Meaning what?
Christians should stop being Christian??
"Turn the other cheek" after all, was taught by Christ himself and is and always has been one of the basic tenants of Christian belief.
As in, Matthew chapter 5 verse 38-39 "You have heard that it was said, 'An Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also."
While I have always understood why some religious people might pray for the safety and well-being of a loved one at war. I have never understood those who insist on praying for the defeat of one side over the other, when Christ was so obviously a pacifist.
When it comes to praying about war. I think Mark Twain said it best in his brilliant piece "The War Prayer" http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig/twain1.html
It's also worth noting that the lawsuit concerning prayer before football was actually a dispute between two Christian groups and had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with atheists versus Christians. It was in fact, more like Catholic versus Protestant since it was a Catholic group that first objected to the Protestant sectarian nature of a Christian chaplain's prayer. The Mormons ended up joining forces with the Catholics in support of their cause. http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/99-62.ZS.html
Finally, for those of you so-called religious people who insist on propagating this propaganda by forwarding this e-mail, that Andy Rooney so obviously did not write; may I suggest you reread your 10 Commandments and pay particular attention to the one that talks about bearing false witness against thy neighbor.
Please feel free to comment below, ( just click on the word comments if the panel is not open) or you can e-mail me direct at firstname.lastname@example.org and your comment will be posted. And don't forget to check out my original blog Just Thinking