In 1962 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to eliminate daily prayer from public schools. In my humble opinion that was a terrible misjudgment and the beginning of our society weakening its morals. By 1962 my school days were behind me but I dont ever recall being harmed by saying the Lords Prayer every morning in school, and as I remember, we also saluted the American flag. And I also dont recall anyone forcing us to do those things. I did study history and learned that the Pilgrims left England and came here to exercise freedom. And I believe that the Constitution and Declaration of Independence were written to guide us in the right direction of freedom - not a bunch of laws that are constantly amended by our elected officials who are supposedly representing us, and ---?
By the way I Googled AMEN and that is not a religious word, so that means we can use it anytime we want without the Supreme Court having us arrested. Look it up yourself. It translates to the end of something. There is lots of nonreligious sage stuff contained in the Bible - like do unto others as you would have them do unto you. I have always been convinced that if everyone followed that idea there would be no Wars. However, somewhere along the way it was changed to do unto others before they do unto you. And the Golden Rule was twisted around to he who has the gold, rules. And all this happened after prayer was thrown out of public schools. Go figure.
But if you believe that every cloud has a silver lining, I believe that the Boston Marathon tragedy has brought a lot of nice people together and again put the City of Boston on the map in a positive light. Millions and millions of dollars have been raised for the people who were effected by the terrorist bombing. Even less-than-wealthy people have responded with donations of nickels, dimes, quarters and a dollar here and a dollar there. It all adds up. The most amazing thing that happened is how many brave people jumped toward the explosion to help the injured as opposed to running in the other direction, that would be the normal, human nature thing to do. So congratulations to Boston for rallying together and not running away from something very negative.
The first national news event Boston received in my lifetime was January 17, 1950 (my 14th birthday) when the largest robbery in history of the USA occurred in the North End when Big Joe McGinnis led a group of robbers into the Brinks Building in the North End and stole close to $3 million dollars in checks, money orders, and other securities. One of the robbers subscribed and paid for a subscription to the Journal the entire time he served in Walpole State Prison. None of the money was ever recovered and I always sort of wondered it went into real estate investments. Whatever!
Another national story putting Boston on the map was Albert deSalvo, the Boston Strangler. He was apprehended in the early sixties for supposedly killing 13 women. He actually was never found guilty of any, and went to jail for rape. He was murdered in jail in 1973. And the other Boston national highlight was (Hey, get ready New York) was in 2004 when the Red Sox came back from a 3 - 0 deficit and beat the Yankees in the playoffs and then went on the sweep the Cards in 4 games to become World Series champions after almost a hundred years of frustrations. So now Boston is once again on the map, this time in a very humane positive light - the people stepping forward and acting like maybe they did learn the Lords Prayer somewhere along the way. They are treating their neighbor, know him or not, as they would like to be treated themselves - proving that the philosophy works. The Journals mission has always (for 50 years) been it is better to give than to receive, and we learned (I think from Earl Nightingale) that if you give, give, and give some more, it will always come back ten-fold, but not necessarily from where you gave. Hey, it worked for us and still does. Attention Supreme Court. Maybe it is time to put prayer back into schools. Whadaya say? AMEN.
Roland Hopkins is founder of the NYREJ, Norwell, Mass.