Fox News loves the "free speech" part of the 1st Amendment when it is invoked by the legion of persecuted Christians who are constantly whining about how their right to free speech is being attacked by godless atheists - the 1st Amendment's "Establishment Clause" when invoked by the godless atheists, not so much. The church of the perpetually persecuted Christians' latest whine involves a Florida city which is being sued for violating that pesky "Establishment" thing because of a Christian oriented prayer vigil that was organized by the taxpayer funded mayor and police chief. So is it any surprise that the aforementioned mayor would show up on Fox & Friends for yet another fact free propaganda session about how about those evil atheists are attacking religious freedom, not just in Florida, but "across America!"
Anna Kooiman, another one of Jesus' BFF's in the Fox News Christian congregation, reported, during the patented "Fight for Faith" segment, that a rash of shootings in Ocala, Florida inspired the mayor of the town to "ask his community to pray." In working in the perfunctory Fox we-hate-atheists meme, she commented that "thanks to atheists, he's on a list of local leaders who are getting sued." After introducing fellow Jesus BFF, Mayor Kent Guinn, she asked him why he asked his community to pray. The chyron: "Say a Little Prayer, Atheist Group Sues City Over Prayer Vigil."
Guinn explained that the police chief, in doing "community policing," asked the NAACP what the city could do to help them. In response, the NAACP asked the police to "reach out" to religious leaders and conduct a prayer rally in order to encourage witnesses to the shootings to cooperate with the police. In case you forgot whom to blame, the chyron reminded you: "The Right Place to Pray, Atheists: Breaks Separation of Church and State."
As the chyron framed the Fox message, "Rally For Courage, 500 to 600 People Attended Ocala Prayer Vigil," Kooiman asked if the event was open to other religions. Guinn said that everybody was welcome, including the atheists. There was more framing of the message with "Turning to God, Community Came Together After Shooting" and Kooiman's question "why do you think they're targeting you." In keeping with what could have actually been a scripted talking point, Guinn speculated that "they don't want God in our community or country" and that "when people speak out, they want to silence that."
Kooiman asked if this is making Guinn's "faith stronger as the chyron read "Open Arms, Guinn: Prayer Rally was for All Religions." Naturally, Guinn spoke about how this is strengthening his faith. He advanced more Fox/Christian right talking points as he spoke about how our armed forces fight for our religious freedoms and "I don't want that to be in vain." He encouraged the audience to "start speaking out on issues like this" in order to prevent people from - wait for it - "trampling on our religious freedoms."
Kooiman cut to the heart of the propaganda: "Is this a symptom of a bigger problem going on across America?" She referenced Fox & Friends coverage of the removal of Christian crosses from high school football players helmets (Anna supported the crosses) and the prohibition of prayer on the football field (Elisabeth Hasselbeck supported the prayer). She cited "the war on religion around the holidays season, you can't say Merry Christmas any more." (Really?) Continuing her propaganda monologue, she asked if this is "evidence of PC police." Not suprisingly Guinn agreed because he "sees it on the news where communities are asked to stop praying" and "now it's happening in my community."
What you didn't hear on Fox & Friends - The humanist group was not opposed to the vigil but "to the fact that the police chief and the mayor are the organizers as posted on the Ocala Police Department’s Facebook page." There were complaints about the vigil which, because it was Christian "revivalist" and "evangelical," showed a religious preference and thus, according to the suit, was a 1st Amendment violation.
On Fox, 1st Amendment for me and not for thee?