After he’s sued, Warren Mayor compares atheists to KKK, Nazis

Warren Mayor JIm Fouts
Warren Mayor JIm Fouts

An atheist is suing the city of Warren for prohibiting him from setting up a “reason station” in the atrium of City Hall alongside a “prayer station” that has operated since 2009.

Douglas Marshall filed the suit in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, saying Mayor Jim Fouts and the city violated his First Amendment rights by endorsing “traditional religious beliefs over atheistic beliefs.”

Mayor Fouts has allowed a religious group to operate a “prayer station,” where pamphlets are distributed and people come to pray.

Fouts maintains that Marshall, a Freedom From Religion member, intends to instigate residents, while the “prayer station” is meant to be a peaceful reprieve.

“The city has certain values that I don’t believe are in general agreement with having an atheist station, nor in general agreement with having a Nazi station or Ku Klux Klan station,” Fouts told the Associated Press. “I cannot accept or will not allow a group that is disparaging of another group to have a station here.”

RELATED: Video catches Warren Mayor Jim Fouts dating young secretary

According to the lawsuit, “Defendants’ decision made Mr. Marshall feel unwelcome at the Civic Center, an outsider in the community, a second-class citizen in Warren, and a disfavored member of a religious minority group. Mr. Marshall further objects to his tax payments supporting the operation and maintenance of a facility that Defendants control in a discriminatory manner that advances traditional religious beliefs over atheistic beliefs.”

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.

  • Dustin Courts

    The comparison with nazism and the KKK is quite accurate. Atheists are just another hate group. I applaud the good sense of this mayor in refusing to allow these hateful bigots to spread their garbage around.
    I wish i could say that some atheists were different, but I have yet to meet even one that is not a hateful asshole.

  • tml

    Fouts needs to put this to a vote. In his quote, he is basing his decision on his belief. “The city has certain values that I don’t believe are in general agreement…” This is the State deciding on use of public space. Monotheism or Non-theism aside, I don’t like to be influenced by third parties in a building that should honor separation of church and state. Sometimes the “prayer station” (that) is meant to be a peaceful reprieve” is a harbor to religions that condemn the very activity that I was engaged in. Say divorce, homosexuality or a woman taking control of a household.
    When filing for divorce myself, at the courthouse, alone, un-represented by any legal council and then facing the soon to be ‘X’, who was lawyered up, I was shaking in fear. I did not turn to ‘a god or prayer booth,’ I turned to the judge. She was my savior because she used critical thinking and impartiality to help me.
    The atheist was making a point, separation of church and state should be honored.

  • tz1

    Perhaps Richard Dawkins can do what PETA is doing by having Detroiters renounce their churches for aid or cash. It isn’t as if we shoild revere reverends like Martin Luther King Jr. Where are/were the atheist abolitionists or freedom marchers?

    • kvc

      What? What does the PETA thing have to do with this and why would Dawkins want to employ a similar strategy? Has he done so in the past? Has he threatened to do so, or do you just recognize the PETA thing as pure nonsense so you want to forge this false association between the two?

      As for your other barely coherent nonsense, just because you’ve never heard of an athiest freedom marcher or abolitionist, doesn’t mean there weren’t any! Something tells me the bounds of knowedge don’t stop with you.

      • Dust Buster

        you sure spend a lot of time ripping other posters comments down but you dont refute their message with facts or anything tangible. are you dauwud walid aka willis the dope runner and gun guy?

        • kvc

          You’re going to try to call me out about lack of facts? That is truly laughable. You don’t use any facts, just nonsense.

  • Aiede

    “I cannot accept or will not allow a group that is disparaging of another group to have a station here.”

    Cast the beam out of your own eye, Mayor Fouts. He’s a junior-varsity Brooks Patterson when it comes to trash talking and shit slinging.

    • Dust Buster

      he is a democrat, former teacher and union suckass so wrong again foolio

      • kvc

        He is like Patterson ‘when it comes to trash talking and shit slinging’, not when it comes to political affiliation and former professions. This isn’t that difficult to comprehend if you have any interest in understanding other peoples point of view. You don’t have to agree, but at least deal with the matter at hand. Of course if you are just looking for opportunies to spew out the same old nonsense…

        • Dust Buster

          i am making more sense and being more truthful than you are. maybe an urban studies professor at wayne might support you and your points but other than that.

          nope

          • kvc

            Your arrogance is truly astounding. As if you’re in any position to evaluate my honesty. Someonew approaches you with reason and logic and you’ve got nothing to stand on but insults and diversions.

          • Dust Buster

            no its not. do you agree then that coleman young was also a shit slinging and trash talker” relax a bit im just asking because many people that hate brooks for that call coleman a hero and scrappy fighter for doing the same thing

          • kvc

            Boy, you just go all over the map. Try focusing on the actual matter at hand. I have no opinion on Young. Don’t know enough about it. I don’t have an opinion on whether Fouts is like Patterson either, I was simply pointing out that you were responding without addressing the actual claim Aiede was making.

            As for relaxing a bit, so far you’ve referred to me as a liar, someone invoking taquiya, a crybaby and a pussy and you’ve got the nerve to say relax a bit? Allow me to abandon my usual devotion to respectful and reasoned discourse to tell you to go fuck yourself.

          • Dust Buster

            thanks, i needed that. sometimes i need a reminder from someone much smarter than me. in the same spirit of helping, it probably lifts your spirits a bit to issue such a written lashing. maybe we can both walk away from this and maybe go downtown and find someone that will let us pay their water bill

  • Dust Buster

    “an outsider in the community, a second-class citizen in Warren, and a disfavored member of a religious minority group”

    well golly i had no idea atheism was a religious group. isnt he kind of shooting himself in the foot with his wording?

    i will agree he seems like a 2nd class citizen and a 1st class complainer. fouts is a goofball indeed but wtf does the atheist dude really have that thin skin that he cant walk in there without feeling all scared?

    also why dont these atheists have the balls to go to dearborn and demand all the muslim stuff get shelved….wonder why they dont dare go there?

    • kvc

      ‘All the Muslim stuff’? I live in Dearborn. Not sure what you’re referring to. Is there ‘Muslim stuff’ at City Hall, because this is in reference to a government building.

      • Dust Buster

        dont play dumb. let me give you the meat and potatoes version. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43INJy_cf3M

        now make up some apology and deflect. i dont do homework for intellectually dishonest

        • kvc

          Lol! Talk about your false equivalency.

          It was an honest question. No one is playing dumb. When you make a vague comment about ‘Muslim stuff’ you should expect questions. You make a claim, and then whine and insult when someone asks you to actually back it up. I didn’t ask you to do MY homework, I asked you to do YOURS. You failed.

          • Trexinmichigan

            He’s an OP douche bag that wasn’t getting enough attention , so he’s here insulting everyones intelligence.

          • Marian Pyszko

            Or if you prefer Hezbollah, according to Osama Siblani our government doesnt have enough buses to haul away supporters…..

            http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2006-07-27/news/0607270148_1_hezbollah-israeli-terrorist-organization

          • Dust Buster

            its nice to know that if i stop ral fast, i will have a trex’s nose in my butt. what did you get tired stalking cher and madonna so now you are onto me?

          • Marian Pyszko

            The head of American ISIS lives in Dearborn and his sister is an assistant principal at Edsel Ford high…

            http://www.freep.com/article/20140707/NEWS05/307070021/Dearborn-Cleric-Ahmad-Jebril-Judge-restricts-computer-access

          • kvc

            Again, this is an issue of the Warren city government allowing a prayer station in one of their buildings. Does Dearborn city hall have an Islamic prayer station? No? Then you are comparing apples to oranges. These are 2 completely different situations and your link has no relevance to this discussion.

            There is supposed to be a separation of church and state, it is being violated in this instance, legal action is being taken. Any attempts to criticize this or refute the atheists claim should be relevant to the specific situation. Enough with the strawmen.

          • Marian Pyszko

            Unlike Warren with a small booth, the entire city of Dearborn is an Islamic prayer station. Wear a star of David or fly an Israeli flag in Dearborn if you doubt it……

          • kvc

            That’s the most absurd thing I’ve ever heard. Again, I live in Dearborn, you are wrong. Has the city of Dearborn sanctioned Islam as their official religion? Is it mandated? No? Ok, great, you’re wrong again. If there are people in Dearborn who will attack you for wearing a star of David, then that is wrong, but unless it’s government sanctioned, its not relevant to this conversation.

          • Dust Buster

            you are lying the word taquiya is in your vocabulary isnt it

          • kvc

            It wasn’t, but it is now. Then again I’m not so consumed by irrational fear and paranoia that I feel the need to sit around obsessing about these things.

          • Marian Pyszko

            Relevant is the city of Deaborn banning religious and political signs from private vehicles parked on city owned property. Dont believe me? Look at the 2014 Homecoming rules Dearborn is trying to enforce.. Cant speak freely without paying a tax??? Why the hell has happened to Dearborn???

            http://www.cityofdearborn.org/homecoming/2014-homecoming-rules

          • kvc

            I think you’re cherry picking a bit, but at least I understand what youre saying. The rules also spell out all the accommodations being made so that religious and political groups can express themselves. I think the main goal is to maintain order and not upset the integrity of what is supposed to be a fun festival.

            I’d be curious how the car issue and the charge for premium ‘free speech’ spots would be interpreted by a court, but there is no perfect solution. Unfortunately all of these religious and political groups feel the need to inject themselves into every event in Dearborn. I don’t see this as some type of nefarious plot by the city of Dearborn though. I think they’re just trying to manage a difficult situation.

            They likely need to improve the wording as I think the private vehicle rules are referring to large signs ‘mounted’ to vehicles. You could always seek clarification from city hall. No ones going to ban you from parking because of your bumper sticker (I hope).

            Again, I don’t see any malicious or conspiratorial activity here. I wasn’t a fan of them trying to charge Terry Jones for coming here either, as much as I abhor everything about the man, but even then I think their main concern was trying to prevent total chaos.

          • Craig Reynolds

            No pets, no alcohol, no political or product solicitations and, by the way, no religious crap in Ford Field and its public parking areas for the three days of the Festival ONLY. So bring in and wave whatever junk you want to afterwards, but no Terry Jones-type calculatedly antagonistic encounters during everybody’s party, please. What exactly is the problem with that?

          • Dust Buster

            bullshit. you and the other atheist warriors for truth dont have the balls to go to dearborn with your crybaby shit. you saw the video i posted and you guys wouldnt go there with your bullshit for a $100 bill…

            sorry to be blunt but until you pussies and your lawyers go do that shit in dearborn, you have about as much credibility as a guy that jerked it to a kate upton pic on the web claiming he slept with her.

          • kvc

            Lol! Again with the arrogance and insults! It may surprise you to learn that atheists don’t have to plan their actions based on your opinions. If YOU think someone needs to ‘take on Dearborn’ then YOU need to get on your horse and ride down there cowboy!

            Besides that, there is plenty of athiest criticism of Islam and every other religion and if the city of Dearborn tried to install a Islamic prayer station in city hall, athiests would challenge it. Sorry there’s not a convenient YouTube video for you to watch so that you can be convinced.

          • Dust Buster

            oh noooo he is scholar and imam and peaceful…it is not him but only a few violent peoples that soil the proud peaceful religion…this is the media trying to make muslims look bad.

          • Dust Buster

            you failed because those intolerant members of the cult of death in the video proves what i said. you dont like the message so i am sorry you have to see the truth with these primitive asshatz.

          • kvc

            I don’t like that your comment is completely off topic and irrelevant. I also don’t like arrogant people who think they are human lie detectors and have nothing at and on but petty insults.

    • Marian Pyszko

      Yup….. Dearborn is ground zero for intolerance. West Bloomfield has lots of Arabs and Muslims living there… try walking the streets of Warren Ave in Dearborn as a Jew……..