...Naresh Patel and Ron Banerjee, so their promise to erect "massive pickets" outside Valley Park Middle School, which brings in an Imam for Friday prayer services , can safely be met with wild gales of laughter.
As for whether the service offends the notion of public schools as secular space, I am of two minds. There may be a slippery slope here, although Joe Warmington's arguments aren't terribly compelling: putting up a nativity scene around Xmas seems far more peripheral to the Christian religion than weekly prayer services do to the Muslim one. Furthermore, does anyone really expect the school to hand out late slips every week to upwards of 400 students for running off to pray? That sounds impractical.
When is the last time you saw a nativity scene in a school, and if it was right to get rid of it, isn't it also right to oppose this also? It’s a clear double standard.
As I say, nativity scenes are a bit of a bauble in the Christian religion. They're aren't a required aspect.
Demanding the removal of the nativity scene, the lords prayer and the Christmas tree was all done under the banner of removing religion from schools.
If this stands, it’s very hard to deny that one religion is being targeted when another is being supported.
I'd rather have reasonable accommodation for religious belief in public schools, be it Muslim, Jewish, Christian, Hindu, whatever, than have a complete ban and effectively force many parents to send their kids to parochial schools instead where their children will have no exposure to children from other religious (or non-religious) backgrounds and are more likely to be narrowly indoctrinated. I've often found graduates of a parochial school education, Christian, Jewish or Muslim, to be less tolerant and less able to accept people of different views. Better to have an hour of optional religious education (in the religion of your choice) in public schools then drive students from religious families into educational ghettos.
The problem, FB, is that if 90% of the children are of one faith - say, Christian, and the others are splintered into a few other faiths - say Muslim, Hindi.. and they are marched off to a different room - they are effectively being socially segregated.
A public school is no place for specific religion of any type to be supported, and the idea that an Imam is being brought in on school time for prayer services is more than a step down a slipper slope - it's a direct incursion on the separation of Church and State.
What say we make time during prayer services in Mosques to have government people come in and explain the grotesque misuse of their religion to justify violence and subjugation of women?
That beign said, howver, I think it wouldn't hurt to allow:
a) Quiet time each day for children to consider aspects of their life which are of significance to them - which might be quiet prayer, might be contemplation of the beauty of mother nature, and might just be thinking about the importance of family and friends;
b) Broad religious education to examine the bredth of all religious belief and allowing children in that context, to express their faith to others;
c) Non-faith based classes on "morality" - fundamentally accepted ideas of right and wrong. ie) Telling the truth, not hurting others, not stealing or damaging others' property - having respect for others rights to disagree with you.
Its a shame that a public school tries to push religion onto the throats of little ones - sad both for muslims and non-muslims.
I know the native scene of Muslims than Christians.
Post a Comment