The California State Legislature has overwhelmingly approved a bill that would allow senior executive-led prayer at entertainment studios, according to a Sacramento Bee report. Introduced by Burbank Councilwoman Maria Key-Freym and known as the “First Weekend Tanked” Programming Bill, the legislation, which passed last Thursday, will allow introduction of certain types of prayer at department meetings, general staff meetings, private executive lunches and certain quarterly board meetings held within 48 hours of stockholder meetings and earnings announcements.
Federal law still bars as unconstitutional the forced participation of studio executives and middle management in the practice of getting down on one’s knees and “praying to god people watch our shows,” often known in the business as the “If I Go I’m Taking You With Me” amendment, enacted in 1993 during President Clinton’s first term in office.
Under the new bill, which may contradict the 1993 ruling, designated senior executives will be allowed to deliver “inspirational speeches and simple prayers calling for God to look elsewhere in the building for sinners” in instances where studio releases do worse than expected when opening in theaters or broadcast on TV. The California U.S. Attorney is expected to consider a constitutional challenge sometime this summer.