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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Vashta Nerada BS: San Bernardino Shootings 2 Dec 2015 (79* d) RE: BS: San Bernardino Shootings 2 Dec 2015 03 Dec 15

"Prayer-Shaming" Isn't about Attacking Prayer. It's About Calling Out Empty Platitudes

Wednesday afternoon, two shooters turned San Bernardino, California, into the site of the deadliest mass shooting in the U.S. since the 2012 attack on Sandy Hook Elementary School. Even considering the unusual early details—the husband-and-wife attackers, their escape from the scene—there was a grim familiarity to the way Wednesday's events unfolded. The aerial maps, the police press conference, the worried relatives cleaving one by one into groups of the relieved and the grieving—Americans know these scripts by now.

One element of the post-massacre liturgy is getting fresh attention, however: the politicians who quickly offered their public "thoughts and prayers" to the victims. President Obama pushed back against "thoughts and prayers" in a press conference after the shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon in October. "Our thoughts and prayers are not enough," Obama said back then. Two months and 57 mass shootings later, the apparent backlash against prayer has metastasized. "GOD ISN'T FIXING THIS" blared the New York Daily News's remarkable front page Thursday morning.

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