Wednesday, March 30, 2011

It's April again. Here is my note explaining why claims that President Obama cancelled the Nat'l Day of Prayer are FALSE!

by Frederick B. Gerwig on Wednesday, 30 March 2011 at 22:29

It always amazes me how eager people are to believe anything about our current president that make him seem shady or un-American.

In April 2009 and April 2010, these emails and statuses claiming that the Nat'l Day of Prayer has been cancelled by President Obama have circulated. The are ABSOLUTELY false, yet year after year someone (likely a Birther, Becker, or Mama Grizzly) spreads this same old garbage to people they know.

Here is something like what the status will say...I am sure you will see it before May 05, 2011.

President Obama decided that there will no longer be a "National Day of Prayer" held in May. He doesn't want to offend anyone. Where was his concern about offending Christians last January when he allowed the Muslims to hold a day of prayer on the capitol grounds. As a Christian American "I Am Offended." If you agree, copy and paste no matter what religion you are.

The National Day of Prayer (aka US Law 36 U.S.C. § 119) is an observance initiated by Congress and signed by President Harry S. Truman in 1954. As it is a law, a President of the US cannot simply cancel it. It would literally take an act of Congress or a ruling by a judge to overturn it. That stated, the day has been challenged. In April 2010, a judge heard a case from the Freedom from Religion Foundation asking that the observance be ruled unconstitutional. The judge did just that, but an appeal was immediately filed...with President Obama's attorneys trying the appeal IN FAVOR of the Nat'l Day of Prayer.

If you need more than my word for this, try their own site: They even have a ticker counting down until the exact second that the observance begins in 2011. Beyond that, is a fact checking website. They too have a story (with cited sources) explaining why this email/status is a FALSE claim. Here is a link if you want to see for yourself:

As an educator of History and American Government it absolutely disturbs me that we, as a nation, have become so gullible that we will pass on these lies about so many subjects, get all worked up into a lather, and believe them as truth no matter how ridiculous without checking our sources. It actually concerns me less whether people practice this observance or not (faith or no it is each person's own business), yet it is important that we have a twinge of disbelief when things like this are put out there. Nevertheless, I do not mind being a fact checker for those around me. But please people, look before you leap into a big pile of bullpucky such as this without maybe simply Googling their "National Day of Prayer" site to see that they have a current site counting down to a future date. Additionally, if you ever doubt anything about something relating to a national law, perhaps ask a Social Studies teacher. I am sure you know one. We are the Jeopardy contestants of educators. You're welcome.

***Steps Down Off His Soapbox***

Frederick B. Gerwig