Annie Laurie Gaylor is co-founder of the Freedom From Religion Foundation and editor of
Freethought Today, the only freethought newspaper in the United States, which is published ten times a year by FFRF.
In 1980, she graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has since appeared on national TV talkshows, including Tom Snyder's former Tomorrow, Sally Jessy Raphael and Donahue's Last Word, as well as many regional and local TV and radio shows throughout the United States.
Public schools exist to educate, not to proselytize. Children in public schools are a captive audience. Making prayer an official part of the school day is coercive and invasive. What 5, 8, or 10-year-old could view prayers recited as part of class routine as "voluntary"? Religion is private, and schools are public, so it is appropriate that the two should not mix. To introduce religion in our public schools builds walls between children who may not have been aware of religious differences before.