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Tuesday, December 3, 2013

NEWS FLASH! Prayer Has Not Been Banned From Schools

Okay, I've covered this before but I keep seeing the same old complaint about god and prayer being taken out of school. PEOPLE! LISTEN! Prayer has not been banned from school. That is propaganda that whiny, uninformed people are using to push their personal agenda. First off, what kind of god would allow him/herself to be kicked out of anywhere? That sort of takes the “supreme” out of supreme being and the “omni” out omnipresent and omnipotent. If your god has been kicked out of somewhere perhaps you should shop around, maybe check into whatever entity did the kicking.

Second, prayer is not banned from public school. It is not, however, subsidized nor mandated. In other words, kids can pray in school as long as it's not disruptive. If you mean prayer is not mandated in school anymore, that's right, but ask yourself this. Which god would you like to have schools force your child to pray to? If you're Roman Catholic (which is the largest single religious group in America, weighing in with 67 million members in 2005, according to the Pew Forum on Religion. The Southern Baptist Convention is the largest Protestant denomination, tipping the scales at a measly 16 million), you don't want them using the King James version (do you have anything in Latin perhaps?). If you're Jewish, you don't want any of that New Testament or Jesus stuff. If you're Morman...well, you probably just want to be left alone, and if you're a Jehovah's Witness, you don't want a birthday or Christmas present. Hey, don't forget about Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and all those other non-Abrahamic types. Of all the various flavors of religious faith, the top three in America are:

1. Christianity
2. Judaism
3. Muslim

So, should it go by a “majority rules” kind of thing and Christianity be the state mandated religion? Is that what you really want? Okay, which kind of Christianity? There are somewhere in the neighborhood of 41,000 different “Christian” denominations. I say, “somewhere in the neighborhood” because there is a great deal of disagreement among themselves as to which ones qualify as real Christian denominations and which ones may be considered...ahem...cults. Some won't dance, some won't take blood transfusions, some won't listen to music, some won't use electricity and some like to juggle rattlesnakes. So, which kind will it be? Whichever one is chosen it will be to the exclusion of the others and will likely piss them off (sort of like Sunni and Shia Muslims. You know, the ones who have been killing each other for a while because they can't agree on a few religious tenets). Speaking of government mandated religions which are taught in school and pretty much forced on the citizenry, if you want to go somewhere that already has all these things and stops everything so that everyone can pray, Iran is still in business and they seem to have that shit down pat.

America is far too culturally diverse to have a state mandated religion. That's why the Pilgrims left England, to escape just such a situation. In polls in richer countries, fewer people claim that religion plays a significant part in their lives, here there is a majority (although the numbers are falling rapidly) who claim that it does, that aligns us more with developing countries.

And before too many of you get up on your hind legs and start shouting about America being founded as a Christian country, hold up. I have presented this before but will do so again here.

Article 11 of the Treaty of Tripoli states that, “As the government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion,-as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion or tranquility of Musselmen,-and as the said States never have entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mehomitan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.”  The Treaty of Tripoli was written at the end of George Washington’s second term. It was approved by the Senate on June 7, 1797 and officially ratified by the Senate with John Adam’s signature June 10, 1797. At the time, this was the third instance of the Senate voting unanimously.

Although some New England States continued to use tax money to fund local congregational churches into the 1830s, the United States claims to have been the first nation to have no official state-endorsed religion. It just wasn't done the way that some people would like you to believe. Besides, as much bitching as everyone does about the loss of so many freedoms, do you really want to give up the one that allows you to practice the religion of your choice or not to practice any religion at all if that's your choice? It's not the school's job to raise your children, it's the school's job to educate them. It's your job to raise them.

May the farce be with you.

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