Willful disregard

Here we go again! You’ll recall My letter to the mayor, in which I relay my thoughts about why it’s such a bad idea to indulge in prayer of one religion before city council meetings. I also asked him if he represented all the residents of the city, or just those who shared his religion. I received no response.

The Niagara Falls Review posted, “Falls mayor apologizes over prayer at council swearing-in.” It seems that as part of the swearing-in ceremony of new city councillors earlier this week, the Mayor included a non-denominational prayer recited by Reverend Chris Kulig. There’s nothing like keeping religion out of city ceremonies like a Reverend reciting a prayer.

Just before the city ceased the practice of opening council meetings with prayers in 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada declared the reciting of prayers before public meetings infringes on people’s freedom of conscience and religion. Three years later the Mayor pulls this garbage.

Given his willful disregard in respecting other’s beliefs, I wrote him again.

I read the Niagara Falls Review article “Falls mayor apologizes over prayer at council swearing-in” online with great interest. You apologized, which I do appreciate. But then you’re quoted as saying, “I was pleased with the inaugural ceremony and proud of the event and the way it was put together,” which entirely nullifies the apology.

I’m at an utter loss to understand how you can not see that your including an observance of one faith makes it clear that you are going out of your way to exclude everyone who has other beliefs.

When this same issue came up over city council meeting prayer, I wrote you and asked if you really represent all residents of the city, or just those who share your faith. You didn’t deign to reply. If it was because I don’t share your faith, I’d really like to know.

So let’s clear the air. Please tell me, do you represent all the residents of Niagara Falls equally, or do you favour those of your faith? It’s a very simple question and I believe I am entitled to an answer since I am a resident.

Looking forward to hearing from you,

[Signature]

PS. Next time please don’t apologize for including prayer in a city ceremony. Simply don’t include prayer in a city ceremony in the first place. Simple!

Do I expect a reply? I really don’t, but I can’t fathom how a politician can really let this go. It’s so ridiculous.

I’ll keep you posted.

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