I think we all can pretty much agree that the nation was founded and structured under the tenets of Freemasonry.
Freemasons have long proclaimed that no important undertakings should begin without the blessing of deity.
Granted, no specific deity was endorsed, but prayer was encouraged nonetheless.
Therefore, in my opinion, there is precedent and tradition to favor prayer in meetings of importance in American society.
Don't **** with the Masons.
So mote it be.
It's GREAT to be me. --- "45% liberal/55% conservative"
Diplomacy is the art of saying 'nice doggy" until you can find a gun.
Meetings have schedules. If there are going to be prayers, then put them on the schedule. Of course, since I'm not aware of reserved seating at any government meeting, that would mean that the prayer participants are going to be in front or perhaps take up the whole room.
Again, I'm not against any religion and when in the appropriate forum, I either stand or sit quietly out of respect for others. At a government meeting--my government as well as yours, I expect neutrality across all beliefs. You want government to support the majority wherever that may be. I want government to accommodate all religions and if even 1 person wants to pray before your government meeting, then in the context of the OP, then they should have just as much right as you do to have their prayer aired. I hope the meeting takes 5 hours before business begins. If that is the case, then more people will agree with me.
The odd part - the part I don't get - is why are these Atheists opposed to prayer? especially when they're not forced to partake in prayer.
Although they might not believe in God, they should believe in freedom and embrace freedom - even if a group is partaking in a harmless action such as prayer.