JASPER, Ala. — An Alabama sheriff’s office says that it “won’t bow” to the bidding of the Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) after it received a letter requesting that Sheriff Nick Smith cease promoting prayer on social media as it favors religion over non-religion.
FFRF contacted Sheriff Nick Smith of the Walker County Sheriff’s Office on Nov. 26 to advise that a citizen had expressed concern that Smith’s office “has a pattern of calling on citizens to pray during times of tragedy.”
“We write to encourage your office to use more inclusive language when posting on social media,” it wrote.
Specifically, FFRF pointed to two recent posts: One lamented the tragic shooting death of fellow Sheriff “Big John” Williams and commented, “Our prayers are with the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office family as they deal with this senseless tragedy.” Another was an official statement regarding a 14-year-old boy who was accidentally hit by a sheriff’s deputy as the teen was riding his four wheeler.
“It’s at this very trying time that we, as a county, should fall to our knees and pray fervently for mercy and peace,” Smith urged. “Now is not the time to place blame. Not on the deputy, not on the young boy, and most definitely not on his parents.”
“Instead of wasting our breath condemning and judging, we all need to use it to cry out for God to place His hand on this young boy, and return him home to his family
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