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In response to Ruth Johnson’s letter to the editor (Jan. 13) titled "But atheists don’t pray."

I will agree we don't pray to a fictitious God or Gods. But she also stated the gentleman in question had no right to an invocation in the state Senate. I disagree. The root of invocation -- invoke -- means: To ask solemnly for, to beg or implore. To implore means to beg for earnestly or to beseech.

Do any of these definitions say anything about it being strictly a prayer?

She began to rant about atheists and murder, Satanism,and other degenerative activities. I became angry at first, but realized she cannot see we don't threaten her or her beliefs.

I am an offspring of a Christian mother and an atheist father. He was kind and stern but with a mind that was always learning and questioning. My mother loved him completely and with all her heart, and kept her own faith strongly rooted.

To my knowledge, my father never killed anyone outside of World War II, nor cheated on my mother and never worshiped the devil. He did, however, help people in need and helped his children when they needed it.

What was wrong with this way of life? Why couldn't this gentleman say an invocation. He has the right to free speech. That was what our founders wanted, a free society clear of bias or prejudice, free from tyranny and state religions.

I don't care what you believe or do if it gets you through life. We who don't believe as you do should be able to do the same.

Mark C. Cutler

Muscatine

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