Donna Kuzemchak and Alderman Marcia Hall expressed very strong feelings
about the inclusion of the affirmation at the end of their oath
of office. Ms. Kuzemchak said that had the oath remained as it had
previously been administered with "So Help Me God" at the end, she
would have so sworn. However, she felt that an affirmation as presented
by Clerk of The Circuit Court Sandra Dalton was inappropriate.
Ms. Hall, on
the other hand, said that she believes very strongly in the constitutional
"separation of church and state" and, therefore, opposed the inclusion
of the affirmation in her oath. She said: "I was given the option
(of including it or leaving it out) and I took it."
has been some conversation about the inclusion of a prayer in the
ceremony. Alderman Kuzemchak said that the first minister asked
to deliver such a prayer at the inauguration declined, saying it
would be inappropriate.
We at The Tentacle
don't know if you noticed, but the Rev. Mark Vandermeer, pastor
of The Monocacy Valley Church, who delivered the prayer, was not
identified as a minister in the printed program. And, also, the
master of ceremonies at the event at The Weinberg Center For The
Arts initially skipped the prayer. However, it was inserted later
in the program. Those familiar with what happened on the stage that
day say that it was an oversight.