By David Silverman
In a press release, Wood pointed out that, last year, Olens and the Cobb Commission permitted an atheist to give the opening prayer. “As a Christian and as an American, I am insulted that Olens would allow a man without faith to stand up at a public meeting and encourage others to give up their religion,” Wood wrote.
It’s true. Smyrna atheist Ed Buckner was one of seven county residents who, with the American Civil Liberties Union, filed a federal lawsuit to halt the practice of invocations before government meetings in Cobb.
This is the court battle that Olens speaks of winning. Immediately afterward, in July of last year, Buckner served notice that he wanted to give the invocation at a county commission meeting.
In an interview this week, Olens said that, under the First Amendment, he had no choice. Picking and choosing who could give a public prayer would only have landed the county right back in court.
Buckner’s invocation turned out to be a protest, naturally. At the time, Olens called it “repugnant.” The commission chairman sent the atheist a letter saying that Buckner had proved that he was not interested in spiritual communication and would be not be allowed to repeat the stunt.
“Please! Don’t hate me because I gave the evil atheists time to speak! We all agree that we are a Christian nation and the more bigoted we are, the better! Those evil atheists, with their “constipatution” (whatever that is) made me let them speak!”
Never forget why we fight. A hearty thank you to our president Ed Buckner for giving a civilized protest against an unconstitutional act, thereby thrusting Christian bigotry into the limelight during the election. Let’s see who is bigoted.