Wednesday, December 5, 2007

States That Begin with the Letter "I" Chime In

IL, Decatur: an elementary school teacher discovered the word "God" in a phonics book. She instructed her pupils to cross the word out because it is illegal to mention God in a public school.

IL, Oak Park: the town blocked a private Catholic hospital from putting a cross on its smokestack because the city council thought some local resident might be offended.

IN, Cedar Lakes: a fifth-grade girl wore a watch to school that had "Jesus Loves Me" imprinted on it. Her teacher ordered her to remove it and never wear it to school again because "it is illegal to wear anything Christian in school."


CrypticLife said...

I don't disagree with all of your points, however I would point out that you've overstated on what's "silly".

The Decatur teacher violated the First Amendment, as did the Oak Park city council. The Cedar Lakes teacher may not have, depending on why she prohibited it.

The Colorado school district is allowed to decide curriculum. The state of the law allows teaching about a religion without actually teaching the religion itself. So long as they are not teaching kids to follow American Indian rituals, they're within the bounds of the law.

TV commentators get to largely say what they like. He's not prohibiting Hillary from wearing it, or even claiming it's illegal.

People can sue for anything. You also don't give any facts as to whether the program actually is religious or not, so it's impossible to say whether this is silly or perfectly reasonable.

History Matters said...

Cryptic Life:

Good, thoughtful comments as usual.

It's been a long time since I dug up the Colorado example, but as I recall, their justification for removing the Bible was "separation of church and state." That is my objection. I don't have an issue with a school board/district deciding such a thing based on some other parameters, such as public sentiment, not wanting to complicate the teaching day with any religious texts, etc.

The two things that get me motivated to post are:
1) a court overturning the public will based on a misuse of the First Amendment
2) an individual overreacting to some of the limitations the courts have set, and who believes they need to go much further than is actually required.