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April 18, 2024

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Spring Housing Guide

Religion taught in class?

Due to individals passing out the New Testament on Wednesday, the thought of allowing public school prayer crossed my mind.

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under [liberalism], indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

In June of 2002, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California ruled that the Pledge of Allegiance is unconstitutional because it endorsed religion, forcing young children across the nation to omit the word “God” when reciting this pledge in school. This is why I have created a plan in order for individuals to express their religious beliefs/prayers in schools as long as it poses no danger, inconvenience, or forced participation by unwanted individuals.

Currently, 87 percent of the United States is Christian, however using the word “God” or expressing Christian views in public schools is not allowed, while promoting other “religious cultures” are.

At the start of the 2002 school year, the University of North Carolina required all incoming freshman to attend a week long-long orientation and read the book “Approaching the Qur’an: The Early Revelations,” by Michael Sells. Afterwards, a discussion would take place regarding the book in order for these students to understand the September 11th hijackers and their motives.

This requirement caused several new students to file a restraining order against this practice, later denied by a U.S. District Court Judge.

Another court suit was filed in Byron, California after students were forced to choose a Muslim name, dress in Muslims garbs, and give up their lunch for one day in order to understand the Islamic month of Ramadan, according to an article written by C.T. Rossi in 2002 (“Is America Turning Towards Islam?”).

As one can imagine both these schools adopted such programs in order for students to be more tolerant toward diversity.

The ACLU also appears to have conflicting views when it comes to interpreting the Bill of Rights. The ACLU opposes allowing student prayer and expressing other religious beliefs in public schools, while defending the NAMBLA organization’s Web site cites the First Amendment’s right to free speech.

When reviewing these situations, it seems ironic how our nation bends over backwards to accommodate other religious beliefs or deviant behavior while making it illegal to mention “God” and Christian beliefs.

Since court cases past and present have ruled the Bible and prayer unconstitutional, I have come up with a plan to add religion back into the school systems.

A “Religion Awareness Week” should be incorporated into the education curriculum and take place during the week of September 11.

The week will have students in grades fourth through twelfth throughout the U.S. write papers explaining the history, practices, and beliefs regarding their respective religious affiliations.

The aforementioned criteria might be too technical for students in the primary grades so these students will have their choice to tell a story, sing a song pertaining to their religion, or give a brief description about their place of worship.

The purpose of “Religion Awareness Week” is to give students information to help explain views that some people have regarding certain issues, to encourage students to respect their classmates’ different views, to gain a new perspective on different beliefs and practices, and to teach students that there isn’t any one religion that is superior to another, thus avoiding an ethnocentrism belief in later years.

A teenager, Joe Reynolds wrote the following poem, from Bagdad, Arizona, in 2000, summing up some of the American logic surrounding religion in school (which is posted on the internet).

THE NEW SCHOOL PRAYER

Now I sit me down in school

Where praying is against the rule

For this great nation under God

Finds mention of him very odd.

If Scripture now the class recites,

It violates the Bill of Rights.

And anytime my head I bow

Becomes a Federal matter now.

Our hair can be purple, orange or green,

That’s no offense; it’s a freedom scene.

The law is specific, the law is precise.

Prayers spoken aloud are a serious vice.

For praying in a public hall

Might offend someone with no faith at all.

In silence alone we must mediate,

God’s name is prohibited by the state.

We’re allowed to cuss and dress like freaks,

And pierce our noses, tongues and cheeks.

They’ve outlawed guns, but FIRST the Bible.

To quote the Good Book makes me liable.

We can elect a pregnant Senior Queen,

And the ‘unwed daddy,’ our Senior King.

It’s “inappropriate” to teach right from wrong,

We’re taught that such “judgements” do not belong.

We can get our condoms and birth controls,

Study witchcraft, vampires and totem poles

But the Ten Commandments are not allowed,

No word of God must reach this crowd.

It’s scary here I must confess,

When chaos reigns the school’s a mess

Lord this silent plea I make:

Should I be shot;

My soul please take!

Amen.

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