Posts Tagged ‘constitutional’

Holy Toledo! Official San Francisco Contractor AutoReturn Advertises Bible Verses While Towing Cars in the 415?

Friday, November 9th, 2012

WTF is this? Is this a tow truck towing cars in the Financial under authority of the contract AutoReturn has with SFGov?

I think so!

And yet, in addition to charging you $500 for towing away your ride for being just 13 minutes late, AutoReturn wants to be involved with giving you a lecture from the King James.

Check it: 

Click to expand

I cry foul.

For the record, PSALM 23:

The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name’ sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: For thou art with me;
Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies;
Thou annointest my head with oil; My cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the House of the Lord forever.

And then I’ll tow your car.

Sometimes, I just don’t know…

“The colonel’s hostility softened gradually as he applied himself to details. “Now, I want you to give a lot of thought to the kind of prayers we’re going to say. I don’t want anything heavy or sad. I’d like you to keep it light and snappy, something that will send the boys out feeling pretty good. Do you know what I mean? I don’t want any of this Kingdom of God or Valley of Death stuff. That’s all too negative. What are you making such a sour face for?”

“I’m sorry, sir,” the chaplain stammered. “I happened to be thinking of the Twenty-third Psalm just as you said that.”

“How does that one go?”

“That’s the one you were just referring to, sir. ‘The Lord is my shepherd; I—’”

“That’s the one I was just referring to. It’s out. What else have you got?”

“‘Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto—’”

“No waters,” the colonel decided, blowing ruggedly into his cigarette holder after flipping the butt down into his combed-brass ash tray. “Why don’t we try something musical? How about the harps on the willows?”

“That has the rivers of Babylon in it, sir,” the chaplain replied. “‘…there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion.’”

“Zion? Let’s forget about that one right now. I’d like to know how that one ever got in there. Haven’t you got anything humorous that stays away from waters and valleys and God? I’d like to keep away from the subject of religion altogether if we can.”

The chaplain was apologetic. “I’m sorry, sir, but just about all the prayers I know are rather somber in tone and make at least some passing reference to God.”

“Then let’s get some new ones. The men are already doing enough bitching about the missions I send them on without our rubbing it in with any sermons about God or death or Paradise. Why can’t we take a more positive approach? Why can’t we all pray for something good, like a tighter bomb pattern, for example? Couldn’t we pray for a tighter bomb pattern?”

“Well, yes, sir, I suppose so,” the chaplain answered hesitantly. “You wouldn’t even need me if that’s all you wanted to do. You could do that yourself.”

“I know I could,” the colonel responded tartly. “But what do you think you’re here for? I could shop for my own food, too, but that’s Milo’s job, and that’s why he’s doing it for every group in the area. Your job is to lead us in prayer, and from now on you’re going to lead us in a prayer for a tighter bomb pattern before every mission. Is that clear? I think a tighter bomb pattern is something really worth praying for. It will be a feather in all our caps with General Peckem. General Peckem feels it makes a much nicer aerial photograph when the bombs explode close together.”

Does CA Really Need a “Social Media Privacy Act?” No Matter, SB 1349, the Job Interview Facebook Password Law, is Here

Friday, May 25th, 2012

Uhhhhhhhhhhh, I’m not going to articulate myself on this one.

But you, you go right ahead, feel free to tell your buds what you think. (But first, please email me your FB account names / passwords, and your intimate photos and whatnot.)

All right, off you go:

“California Senate Approves Social Media Privacy Act - Yee’s SB 1349 will prohibit employers, colleges from seeking Facebook, Twitter passwords

SACRAMENTO – On a bipartisan 28-5 vote, the California Senate today approved legislation authored by Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) to stop employers from formally requesting or demanding employees or job applicants provide their social media usernames and passwords.

Yee’s bill also prohibits public and private colleges and universities from requiring such information of students.

The bill comes after a growing number of businesses, public agencies, and colleges around the country are asking job seekers, workers, and students for their Facebook and Twitter account information.

“I am pleased by today’s overwhelming vote to end this unacceptable invasion of personal privacy,” said Yee. “The practice of employers or colleges demanding social media passwords is entirely unnecessary and completely unrelated to someone’s performance or abilities.”

In addition to the privacy of students and workers, accessing social media accounts may also invade the privacy of family members and friends who thought they only were sharing information with their own social media network.

“These social media outlets are often for the purpose of individuals to share private information – including age, marital status, religion, sexual orientation and personal photos – with their closest friends and family,” said Yee. “This information is illegal for employers and colleges to use in making employment and admission decisions and has absolutely no bearing on a person’s ability to do their job or be successful in the classroom.”

“SB 1349 is a significant step towards securing Californians’ constitutional right to privacy, both online and offline, in the workplace and in school,” said Jon Fox, Consumer Advocate for CALPIRG.

“If employers are permitted to access the private information of job applicants, unscrupulous hiring managers will be given greater leeway to circumvent anti-discrimination laws,” said Joe Ridout of Consumer Action.

Rather than formally requesting passwords and usernames, some employers have demanded applicants and employees to sit down with managers to review their social media content or fully print out their social media pages. SB 1349 will also prohibit this practice.

Shannon Minter, Legal Director for National Center for Lesbian Rights, said that the practice of requesting social media passwords is the equivalent to reading a personal diary, and also LGBT employees, job applicants, and students already face significant obstacles when applying for schools and jobs.

Minter said that SB 1349 helps ensures individuals are “judged by their qualifications and performance, rather than elements of their private life.”

IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law professor Lori Andrews, who specializes in Internet privacy, told the Associated Press that these practices even when given voluntarily should not be allowed.

“Volunteering is coercion if you need a job,” Andrews told the AP.

Johnny Veloz, an unemployed photographer, told KCRA Sacramento that he was asked for his Facebook password during a recent job interview. Veloz was denied the job after refusing to provide the information.

“For me, that’s rude and it’s not respectful,” Veloz told KCRA. “Someone has privacy and you expect them to respect that.”

Yee’s bill would also prohibit employers and colleges from demanding personal email addresses and login information of employees, applicants, and students.

SB 1349 will now be considered by the State Assembly before heading to the Governor.”

And oh, if I ever crafted a “social media privacy act,” I can just about guarantee you that Facebook WOULD NOT LIKE IT. Not one bit.

Just saying.

Oh No, Ed Lee! Rose Pak and Willie Brown Throw Down Against SF Ethics Commission in Sing Tao Daily!

Monday, August 8th, 2011

I don’t know what to make of this image below.

Is it a portion of yesterday’s Sing Tao Daily? (And, if so, wouldn’t that please Caroline Chen of the SF Weekly?)

And does it have some bons mots from Chinatown ward healer Rose Pak and former Mayor Willie Brown?

And does it concern their reactions to the San Francisco Ethics Commission coming down hard on defunct (or maybe not-so-defunct after allRun Ed Run and area attorney Enrique Pearce?

As always, You Make The Call.

Exhibit A, from Rose Pak, on the topic of the recent statements from San Francisco Ethics Commission Executive Director John St. Croix:

“He doesn’t even know the U.S. Constitution. I don’t know how he does his job. How can you deprive people of their rights to volunteer for a campaign? It is unheard in history that if someone enters the race, those who helped him before are not allowed to help him again,” said Pak.

Snap!

And Exhibit B, from His Willieness*:

 ”Former Mayor Willie Brown said St. Croix obviously does not understand what democracy is about. His anti-Ed Lee position has disqualified himself for his post. “When you announce your candidacy, I will not be able to support you. This is just unbelievable,” said Brown.”

(Keep in mind when you hear allegations of constitutionality and whatnot, that Willie Brown went to UC Hastings School of Law and Enrique Pearce and Mayor Ed Lee both attended UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall.)

See? Read it for yourself:

Oh, how about this crude translation? It’s the best I can do right now:

“In response to the letter from San Francisco Ethics Commission Director John St. Croix, supporters of Ed Lee for Mayor reprimanded St. Croix for actions being based on nothing. They also questioned his qualification for the position. 

Chinese Chamber of Commerce consultant Rose Pak described it the biggest joke of the world. She said it is full of nonsense. He didn’t know what he’s talking about. “He doesn’t even know the U.S. Constitution. I don’t know how he does his job. How can you deprive people of their rights to volunteer for a campaign? It is unheard in history that if someone enters the race, those who helped him before are not allowed to help him again,” said Pak.

Enrique Pearce had consulted St. Croix. However, the latter said differently afterwards. Besides, he didn’t provide written replies to questions that Progress for All raised or gave explanations, said Rose Pak. “I will be the first one not to comply. You don’t have the authority to formulate the law, which is not free to go by your interpretation.”

 Former Mayor Willie Brown said St. Croix obviously does not understand what democracy is about. His anti-Ed Lee position has disqualified himself for his post. “When you announce your candidacy, I will not be able to support you. This is just unbelievable,” said Brown.

Hey, what do you think? Is this an accurate translation? Tell me, tell me if you think the translation isn’t good.

*Speaking of Willie Brown (who still writes for the San Francisco Chronicle) and Rose Pak (who used to write for the San Francisco Chronicle), here’s a bit (in the San Francisco Chronicle) from Willie on Rose circa April 2011:

Holding court at the party for the opening of the new airport terminal, Rose was seated at the table with interim Mayor Ed Lee and his wife, Anita, and a host of other local officials.

“I want every one of you to call his office and tell him he should run for mayor,” Rose told the table. “And do it right away so that there’s no misunderstanding.”

Then she turned to the architect David Gensler.

“Didn’t you do this terminal?” she asked.

“Yes,” he said.

“Didn’t you remodel this terminal before?”

“Yes,” he said.

“Then your firm should raise a million dollars for his election campaign.”

Poor Gensler, he didn’t know what hit him.”

Small Section of Golden Gate Park Reserved Solely for Cross-Bearing, Proselytizing, Apostolic Franciscan Friar

Friday, September 24th, 2010

So there I was in Golden Gate Park tracking a giant blue bird and then when I looked up, I saw a hippy on a Jesus trip coming straight towards me larger than life.

Like this. See the robe, the beads, the sandals, the cross with the letters JHS* or IHS? This statue is a like a giant Catholic billboard on public land.

Check it, a huge bronze by Douglas Tilden made in 1906 and dedicated in 1907:

Via mharrsch - click to expand

So, here’s the Baby Name Wizard’s take on Junipero:

“Father Junipero Serra: Spanish Franciscan Friar. He is very well-known as a misogynistic abuser of native slaves and women, but remains an important historical figure in Central California.”

O.K. then. (Wow, a little harsh, huh?)

But what do you think Father Junípero Serra is trying to communicate here?

And what do you think the City and County of San Francisco is trying to promote by allowing public land for this kind of use?

Now, for some Christians, this statue, and the Prayerbook Cross just down the way, are not enough. These people go into the Music Concourse, see Father Serra and then get bummed:

I was just there today, and as a Christian, I was very dismayed by the fact that it seems the park administration has allowed the landscaping to STRATEGICALLY block out the base of the sculpture that has the inscribed descriptions of Junipero Serra. It’s religiously discriminatory and outright insulting, and apparently it’s condoned by the city. But then Jesus said his followers would be hated. At least we were warned.”

I’ll agree that the shrubbery appears to have been placed around this statue to obsure it somewhat. This kind of cover could be, as they say, constitutionally significant – it could affect a judge’s or a jury’s opinion on whether it’s kosher for San Francisco to reserve its land for this kind of message.

Father J was much more prominent back in the day. See?

I’ll tell you, our neighbors to the south in Los Angeles had similar issue with a cross that was a part of its history – here’s the story of how they handled it

How will San Francisco handle the case the Father Serra proselytizing in the GGP? 

Now, shouldn’t Golden Gate Park be a proselytizing-free zone reserved as a place for giant blue birds to eat rodents…

…and recycle aluminum cans?

You Make The Call.

*Now, about that inscription on the crossbar. It’s just a Christogram that spells out the first three letters of the name Jesus. So, it goes J-E-S, or Iota-Eta-Sigma. There’s no need to make up a backronym like Iesus Hominum Salvator or nothing.

The Mobile Billboards of San Francisco – Are They Illegal or Not?

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010

Work with me here – mobile billboards, you know, those trucks that are basically giant rectangular ads, are banned in San Francisco under Section 680 of the Police Code and yet you can see them all over town.

What gives?

Click to expand:

Maybe San Francisco has given up enforcing this regulation? Let’s see what the New York Times had to say back ten years ago:

“Similar disputes are occurring in Boston and in San Francisco, which suspended enforcement of its ban on mobile billboards in June because of a lawsuit, said Nathan Ballard, a deputy city attorney there. But San Francisco recently revised its law to explain the rationale behind it (to cut traffic congestion, truck emissions and assaults on citizens’ aesthetic sensibilities). Unless the billboard company succeeds in persuading a judge to issue a preliminary injunction by Dec. 1, he said, San Francisco will resume enforcing its billboard ban.”

(Nate Ballard was a San Francisco deputy city attorney? Did not know that.) Anywho, it could be that constitutional concerns prevent San Francisco from doing anything about mobile billboards.

Oh well.

That’s just my guess – maybe you can find a loophole here. Enjoy:

SEC. 680. ADVERTISING VEHICLES PROHIBITED ON CITY STREETS.

(a) Findings and Purpose. The inherent primary purpose of commercial advertising vehicles is to display commercial advertising on public streets. By their nature, commercial advertising vehicles are intended to distract, and aim to capture and hold the attention of, members of the public on or adjoining public streets, including drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, and others. Moreover, such vehicles display commercial advertising from a mobile platform, including while the vehicle is moving within the flow of traffic, potentially stopping, starting, or turning abruptly, accentuating the inherent tendency of such advertising to seize attention and to distract. Additionally, the use of motor vehicles to display commercial advertising creates exhaust emissions. For these reasons, the Board of Supervisors finds that commercial advertising vehicles create aesthetic blight and visual clutter and create potential and actual traffic and health and safety hazards. The purposes of this section are (1) to promote the public health, safety and welfare of motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, and others using the City’s public streets and roadways and adjoining areas, by eliminating the aesthetic blight and visual clutter and traffic and safety hazards caused by the operation of commercial advertising vehicles on the City’s streets; (2) to reduce congestion on the City’s streets; (3) to reduce exhaust emissions, by eliminating as an emissions source a type of commercial advertising display whose use may require continuous or extensive operation of motor vehicle engines; (4) to protect public investment in and the character and dignity of the City’s streets; and (5) to aid in the attraction of tourists and other visitors who are so important to the economy of the City. This section is not intended to regulate any non-commercial speech, including non-commercial advertising or signage.

(b) Prohibition. No person may operate any commercial advertising vehicle in or on any public street in the City and County of San Francisco.

(c) Definitions. As used in this Section, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

(1) “City” means the City and County of San Francisco.

(2) “Commercial advertising vehicle” means a motor vehicle that is carrying, towing, or otherwise displaying any commercial advertising sign, unless the vehicle is used primarily to transport passengers or goods.

(3) “Commercial advertising sign” means a banner, placard, poster, card, picture, sign or display that does no more than propose a commercial transaction.

(d) Enforcement.

(1) The Police Department shall issue a written notice of violation concerning, and requiring the immediate correction of, any violation of this Section to the driver of any commercial advertising vehicle that is being driven or used in violation of this Section, as well as to the owner or other person responsible for the vehicle, if the identity of that owner or other person is known or readily ascertainable. If issued to the driver of a commercial advertising vehicle, the notice shall require the driver to inform the owner or other person responsible for the operation of the commercial advertising vehicle of the notice and of the violation to which it relates. Notice to the driver of a commercial advertising vehicle under this subsection shall be deemed notice to the owner or other person responsible for the operation of the vehicle.

(2) The City Attorney is authorized to enforce this Section by appropriate civil action. No such action shall be commenced against any person unless and until the Police Department has issued a notice of violation requiring correction to that person, as specified above, and that person has failed to comply with this Section and with that notice. In any civil action brought to enforce this Section, the City Attorney may pursue the remedies set forth in this Section for the violation of this Section that is subject of the notice, as well as for any subsequent violations of this Section that have occurred within one year after the issuance of the notice without regard to whether the Police Department issued subsequent notices concerning those subsequent violations.

(3) Violation of this Section shall constitute grounds for injunctive relief. In addition, any person who violates or refuses to comply with the provisions of this Section shall be liable for a civil penalty which shall be assessed and recovered in a civil action brought in the name of the People of the City and County of San Francisco in any court of competent jurisdiction. Each separate display of commercial advertising prohibited by this Section, and each day that a violation of this Section is committed or permitted to continue, shall constitute a separate violation. The amount of such civil penalty shall be $250 for the first violation, $350 for the second violation, and $500 for each subsequent violation of this Section. Any penalty assessed and recovered in an action brought pursuant to this paragraph shall be paid to the Treasurer of the City and County of San Francisco. The person against whom a penalty is assessed, or against whom an injunction is obtained, also shall be liable for the costs and attorney’s fees incurred by the City and County of San Francisco in bringing any civil action to enforce the provisions of this Section.

(4) Violation of this Section shall not constitute a criminal offense.

(5) In any action brought to enforce this Section, the City Attorney may also seek any remedies available under state or federal law.

(Added by Ord. 70-92, App. 3/4/92; amended by Ord. 234-00, File No. 001261, App. 10/13/00)

San Francisco City Hall Lights Up in Strawberry and Lime for Christmas

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

Either it’s National Daiquiri Month and the Powers That Are at City Hall wanted to honor California’s strawberry and lime / avocado growers, or….

…this lighting arrangement is the best They can do to approximate Christmas Red and Christmas Green down in Civic Center. (Way too much yellow in that “green” IMO.)

Click to expand:

I’m sure somebody better at Photoshop than I could tone down the riot of color in this photo in order to properly honor Natalis Invicti, or the birthday of baby Jesus, or whatever. But hey, what about the new hires at City Hall? That crew of recent gubernatorial campaign workers seems to be famliar with Photoshop… 

Or not – they didn’t do a very good job it would seem. Oh well, the unaltered photo above will have to do as the record of what Christmas 2009 looked like at City Hall.

Hey, speaking of Christmas, there’ll be no more stars on government trees up in Sonoma. Remember stars atop government Christmas trees? We had a big star on our big tree in Civic Center until about a year ago when it got took down, forever. Oh well.

Merry Christmas!

Protesters in San Francisco March Against the Banning of the Democratic Society Party in Turkey

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

Turkey’s socialist, Kurdish-dominated Democratic Society Party just got banned by Turkey’s Constitutional Court, so these people marched around San Francisco’s City Hall yesterday in protest.

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Click to expand

Here’s Reuter’s take on the situation, via KALW.

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Assembywoman Fiona Ma and SF Young Dems Host Bipartisan Constitutional Convention Panel Tonight

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

Assemblymember Fiona Ma, who represents the interests of San Francisco’s west siiiiide in Sacramento, will be in the bowels of the San Francisco State Building at 455 Golden Gate Ave tonight at 7:oo P.M. to host a special constitutional convention panel being thrown by the San Francisco Young Democrats.

That means that California Forward, the Courage Campaign, Repair California and the New America Foundation will be in the house to discuss l’issue du 2009 a California, our Constitution.

MC FM:

GO8F5718a

(Attention Republicans: This L. Z. is hot. Repeat: Lima Zulu is Hotel Oscar Tango. Expect to be booed)

All the deets after the jump. See you there!

(more…)

Repair California Calls for a Constitutional Convention – Hundreds Listen in San Francisco

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Repair California, the Bay Area Council, and the Full Circle Fund got a pretty decent crowd last night as they called for a California constitutional convention. The L.A. Times has done the same, so this is quite a movement, huh?

San Francisco: Repairing California: Time for a Constitutional Convention
Tuesday, August 11, 2009, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

The mise-en-scene. Left early but let’s call this a crowd of 300-something, all told, at the PG&E Auditorium on Beale Street last night:

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Amy Lesnick of the Full Circle Fund:

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Is this another Bear Flag Revolt, like we had in 1846?

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And, of course,  noisy PopChips were laid out everywhere, just like at the premiere of La Mission in Le Castro Theatre.  

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 A little history:

“In response to a budgetary crisis, several prominent individuals and political organizations are calling for a new constitution. The Bay Area Council, a public-policy advocacy organization, issued a press release in August of 2008 to launch the idea, and co-sponsored a symposium on the subject on February 24, 2009.

A coalition calling itself “Repair California” was formed in 2009 to continue the push for a California constitutional convention. The group plans to submit its proposed measures to the Attorney General by September 25, 2009. This is the first step in the process, after which signatures are solicited from voters.The plan is to obtain the two-thirds majority vote in the legislature and place a new constitution on the ballot for the November 2010 election.

Repair California states that a consensus is emerging to reform these areas:

  • The structure of governance, particularly the legislative and executive branches
  • The processes for initiatives and referenda
  • Campaign finance
  • Term limits
  • Changing to the two-thirds requirement for passing a budget
  • Revenue distribution, particularly between localities and the state”

 Who were the speakers and who was there? Find out, after the jump. (more…)

The Quasi-Unconstitutional Prayer Book Cross of Golden Gate Park

Monday, July 13th, 2009

Just look at this monstrous cross, complete with rune grafitti, on govmint land in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park:

“The Prayer Book Cross was erected in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park in 1894 as a gift from the Church of England. Created by Ernest Coxhead, it stands on one of the higher points in Golden Gate Park. It is located between John F. Kennedy Drive and Park Presidio Drive, near Cross Over Drive. This 57 ft (17 m) sandstone cross commemorates the first use of the Book of Common Prayer in California by Sir Francis Drake’s chaplain on June 24, 1579.” 

Didn’t the City have to sell off the similar Mount Davidson Cross (Yelp-rated) after a lawsuit back in the 1990s? Yes it did.  So, do you think the Prayer Book Cross creates an “appearance of governmental endorsement of religion” as well, particularly considering that we’re living in a post-Everson world?

Do these trees help to make this cross kosher, cause fewer people see it? Potentially, yes. Click to expand:

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In other words, does the City’s ownership and maintenance of Prayer Book Cross violate the No Preference Clause and the Ban on Aid to Religion Clause of the California Constitution and the Establishment Clause of the United States Constitution?

Or maybe it’s all good, because the  cross communicates “primarily non-religious messages” ala the shorter Mount Soledad Cross down in Fun Diego County? This is a close call.

Read all about the Mount Davidson case here, where the  United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit lays down the law. It’s pretty accessible.

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You see it on the right here, as seen back in the day, during the California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894. Electric Tower at Night, with Search Light on Prayer Book Cross in Golden Gate Park:

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The PB cross was a big deal back in the 1800′s, even making the New York Times.

But should it be on government land today?

Just asking…

Presented to Golden Gate Park at the opening of the Midwinter Fair, January 1, A. D. 1894, as a memorial of the service held on the shore of Drake’s Bay about Saint John Baptist’s Day, June 24, Anno Domini 1579, by Francis Fletcher, priest of the Church of England, chaplain of Sir Francis Drake, chronicler of the service. Gift of George W. Childs, Esquire, of Philadelphia. First Christian service in the English tongue on our coast. First use of the Book of Common Prayer in our country. One of the first recorded missionary prayers on our continent. Soli Deo sit semper gloria.”