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Virginia county official compares atheists to ISIS as he calls for prayers at Thanksgiving

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A self-described “Christian conservative tea-party Republican” elected official in Virginia compared atheists to Islamic State militants as he urged residents to pray during their Thanksgiving gatherings.

Wayne Hazzard, chairman of the Hanover County Board of Supervisors, skipped the customary invocation ahead of Tuesday’s meeting and asked fellow board members to indulge him, reported the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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“As we celebrate Thanksgiving this week, I think it appropriate that we continue to remember the reason that this great nation was formed and by whose grace it continues to survive,” Hazzard said, reading from a statement. “Christians who formed our nation celebrated days of thanksgiving to God. The Jamestown and Plymouth colonists recognized that they were sustained only by God’s providence and celebrated Thanksgiving feasts.”

The elected official pointed out that the first three U.S. presidents issued proclamations asking Americans to express thanks to God, and each president since Abraham Lincoln has issued annual Thanksgiving proclamations.

Then Hazzard compared non-religious Americans to Islamic terrorists.

“These days of an enemy from outside of this country, as well as people from within, who would attempt to remove all recognition of God from public life, we offer this proclamation as a reminder that the United States has always acknowledged our nation … is dependent on God’s grace and providence,” he said.

Hazzard proposed a resolution urging Hanover County residents to pray at Thanksgiving, and the board adopted it.

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The proclamation violates the First Amendment’s establishment clause, according to legal experts.

“Government action encouraging prayer is antithetical to the letter and spirit of the Constitution of the United States,” said Claire Guthrie Gastañaga, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia. “Our freedom of religion depends at its foundation on the fact that our Constitution ensures that America has no government-sponsored religion.”

Watch Hazzard’s proclamation posted online by the Friendly Atheist:

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False rumors of an antifa invasion are filling up local neighborhood Facebook groups: report

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Unverified rumors about factions of antifa and looters descending on suburban neighborhoods are blowing up in local Facebook groups and neighborhood watch forums around the country, NBC News reports.

"Some of the posts feature a screenshot of a tweet by a fake antifa Twitter account that Twitter said was created by the white nationalist group Identity Evropa, attempting to drum up fear of looting in residential and suburban areas," the reports reads. "The false antifa tweet was boosted in part by Donald Trump Jr., who posted a screenshot of the tweet to his Instagram account. Other rumors falsely warn of antifa members being 'bused in' to towns in Idaho."

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‘Oh my Lord’: Ex-senator goes off on Trump for lie that he’s a Christian

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President Donald Trump staged a photo-op in front of St. John's Church in Washington, DC on Monday, clumsily holding a Bible to celebrate his demand to call in the National Guard to disperse Black Lives Matter protesters.

It was a move that sent former Sen. Claire McCaskill into a fury.

"You know, I am so sad and angry and full of emotion about what our country is going through right now," she said during an MSNBC appearance. "And the nerve of this man and the people around him thinking it was a good idea to use police on horses and tear gas and flashbangs to move a peaceful crowd so he could go out there and do something that's at its essence so phony."

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William Barr personally gave order to disperse protesters ahead of Trump photo op, DOJ confirms

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The Attorney General of the United States personally issued an order for peaceful protesters to be moved ahead of President Donald Trump's recent walk outside the White House grounds, a report said on Tuesday.

A Justice Department official confirmed to The Washington Post that Attorney General William Barr gave the order when he was seen outside the White House prior to the president's walk to St. John's Episcopal Church.

But on Monday, a White House spokesperson had denied that the protesters were moved to accommodate the president.

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