• God’s Not Allowed In Our School

    a1
    Not the actual bumper sticker

    I was dropping my son off at Pre-School this morning and one of the other parents had a car with a bumper sticker that said something along the lines of, “Dear God, why do you allow so much violence in schools? I’m not allowed in schools. – God”

    This bothers me for many reasons. First of which is the fact that my son goes to a small Pre-School and shares the class with a kid whose parent thinks this is such an awesome bumper sticker that she had to put it on her car. Unfortunately, we live in a world filled with people who think schools deserve violence because people are tolerant of others. What a horrible message!

    Second, it is factually not true. God is allowed in schools. His absence from schools isn’t that administrators won’t let him in; it is because he doesn’t actually exist.

    In all seriousness, the bumper sticker is trying to make the argument against the landmark 1963 Supreme Court case, Abington School District v. Schempp which held that public school sponsored Bible readings were unconstitutional under the First Amendment. The key word here is “sponsored.” Any child can pray to any deity they choose freely in a non-disruptive fashion.

    No one is forbidding prayer in school. Only school sponsored prayer is forbidden. In other words, you can pray silently to Zeus, Allah, Jesus, or Thor before a test if you think it will help you — for the record, it won’t — but a teacher or faculty member can’t force or lead the entire class to pray their particular deity or any deity.

    In other words, the purpose of the bumper sticker is misguided in that it is arguing against a problem that doesn’t actually exist. “God,” as in school prayer, is allowed in public schools as long as it is done by students in a non-disruptive fashion. Still there is a serious problem with school violence and prayer isn’t going to solve that problem. In fact, religious bigotry is often the underlining cause of that problem.

    When children are bullied, they often feel detached from the school and their peers. While there is no excuse for violence, eliminating the culture of bullying within schools would dramatically cut down on violence in schools. There is a group of people who preach that anyone who differs from their idea of moral purity will be and ought to be tortured for all eternity in Hell. They tend to bully gays, atheists, those of other religious views, and anyone else who doesn’t fit their ridged view of piety. Who could they be? I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that perhaps they are the children of religious fundamentalists?

    These people love to use the persecuted card as a tool to bully and persecute others. For example, by inaccurately claiming that God has been forced out of public schools, they are attempting to force everyone to pray to their God in their way. They want to turn their prayers into a show spectacle for everyone to see and for those of other religions or no religion to feel uncomfortable and force religious conformity to the majority – which just so happens to be Christianity.

    But just you wait, the moment a non-Christian prayer or invocation is sponsored by a public school official or faculty member, Christian heads will explode. In their mind, prayer is school is great as long as it is their prayer to their deity. Just you wait bu when it is a Satanist, a Hindu, a Scientologist, or an invocation from any other religion or non-religious alternative that is sponsored in the same way, they will be up in arms demanding that they are being persecuted because their children were allowed to listen to it. Yet they have no problems with other people’s children being forced to listen to their religious prayers.

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    Category: AtheismChristianityEducationfeaturedReligionsecularismSeparation of Church and State

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    Article by: Staks Rosch

    Staks Rosch is a writer for the Skeptic Ink Network & Huffington Post, and is also a freelance writer for Publishers Weekly. Currently he serves as the head of the Philadelphia Coalition of Reason and is a stay-at-home dad.

    61 comments

      1. Stacks you have it all wrong, but one day when you see the reality of why is violence becoming so much intensified you’ll realize that the time is near, Jesus said when you see the world the way it is now then he is coming soon. The Enemy ( Satan ) is now taking advantage of the time because he wants to take as many souls as he can before Jesus comes. You’re a writer and I’m very surprised that as a writer you should have taken the time and research when and how these shooting escalated. I think you will come to a conclusion that when God was not allowed in our prayers in school, the protection for our kids from the enemy is not there as it use to be. look back in to history and you will notice when the violence started escalating. You don’t have to go so back into history either, just take a look and you will open your eyes. To me as a Christian it doesn’t surprise me of what’s going on. I remember a few years back when this type of protest started where kids were not allowed to mention God, I then mentioned to my friends that this is what will happen. Guess what I was dead on. Prayers go out to those kids and family that are going through this type of hardship and violence and I pray for the future of our kids, there is more to come. Please Lord, help us all to come to you and to see your light, and the it may light our way to you and only you. Amen.

        1. Where oh where do I begin with this one. I guess the first thing that comes to mind is that you claim that Jesus said when you see the world the way it is now, then he is coming soon. But Jesus also said that he would be coming with in a single generation. Tic-toc… oops, I guess he goofed. Second, you seem to be so concerned with “the enemy,” but isn’t God… God? I mean, how can God have an enemy? God is supposed to be all powerful, right? That’s the whole thing with Christianity, it has more plot holes than a Michael Bay movie. Christians need the drama of an enemy, but their hero is too powerful to have one. Moving on, I have done the research and it is pretty clear that gun violence is correlated with the mass proliferation for guns. Yeah, the more guns that people have, the greater the likelihood that people will use them to kill others. Strange, right? I never would have seen that one coming… cue sarcasm. Also, As stated in this article, no one is restricted from mentioning God. Public schools cannot however use their position of power to push their personal religious beliefs on children. That’s very different. It also brings me back to my other point. If your Gd exists and is all powerful and everywhere, how is it that the US Constitution is powerful enough to stop him? How can our Constitution force him out of our schools? Isn’t he everywhere? I the reality is that he is nowhere… except in your mind. He doesn’t actually exist. Thanks for playing.

          1. Could you give a reference for the “coming in a single generation”? Also just because He has an enemy doesn’t mean that he isn’t all powerful, it means that He has allowed His enemy to live for a little while. I’m sure you remember that according to the Bible, the Lord will throw Satan in hell for eternity, meaning He wins. If someone is crazy enough to murder people I’m sure they wouldn’t let the law stop them. And even if guns were banned I’m sure they could use other things as weapons. (*cough* fertilizer *cough*) Also He isn’t forced out of schools, wasn’t that your very point? He loves people enough to do want they want, meaning if you don’t like Him, He will leave you alone. So He is in public school but only in the hearts and minds of those who let Him there.

        2. Oh, and you might want to re-reread the article because it addresses most of your points already. Just say’n.

      2. Science is allowed in many churches and of course critical thinking. However, evolution is just as much science as Christianity — they aren’t. In order for something to be something scientific it must be able to be observed. No is alive today who was alive at the beginning of the universe. The best we can do is come up for ideas and theories of how the world began, but evolution is not science. I agree many Christians should take the time to DISCUSS ideas, not argue, but lay out facts and truth. It is okay — it is wise to question everything, and to figure out why you believe what you believe. And that is why I am a Christian. I have looked at logic and decided it makes sense to me. Many people will not agree with me on this, but God should be allowed in schools. Religion aside, if you look at what Christianity teaches, you will find that it some good stuff for kids to hear. “Thou shalt not steal”, “Thou shalt not”- kill, commit adultery, covet, bear false witness, ect. If nothing else Christianity lays guidelines for becoming happy, good, moral people.

      3. Staks, there are two things I want to mention. First, what caused the Big Bang? People who believe in science believe that the Big Bang caused the start of the Universe. But they never explain what caused it. If it did happen, why has nothing like it ever happened since? It only occurred once and has never happened since. How would it be possible for something to happen like this and then never happen once in the entire history of everything, and then never happen again?

        The second point I wanted to make is that removing God from our schools don’t make schools unbiased and not favor any religion, it promotes atheism. Our country was founded on the basis of Christianity, and our founders knew that. With a few exceptions, everyone believed in God. Almost every state constitution mentions or refers to God. Removing God does not make schools neutral. If schools are worried about offending someone, think about what is taught in schools, especially in Science classes. Basically, everything that atheists believe is taught. Schools now support atheist beliefs. Before Darwin, the Creation was taught in schools, and when one teacher started teaching what Darwin had made up, that teacher was fired. How did we go from firing teachers for teaching lies like this to forcing teachers to teach these lies, while firing teachers who actually teach what is true? If a teacher teaches that God is real and teaches about the Creation, he or she is fired.

    1. The real problem with this bullshit, for a sure ’nuff Christian, is something you touched on in your last paragraph. Setting aside for a moment the inconvenience of a teacher or school official promoting some religion other than Christianity – can you imagine the chaos if school officials were required to promote Christianity only?

      First off, there are literally hundreds of Christian denominations. And believe it or not, many if not most of them disagree, sharply, on some very fundamental principles. Just off the top of my head, some denominations recognize evolutionary biology, some favor whacked out “(un)Intelligent Design”, while still others are old fashioned young Earth creationists. With multiple differences as fundamental as this one, how could anyone decide what brand of Christianity they want in their school?

      After all, we have all these Christian denominations for a reason: so people can voluntarily choose which one best reflects their beliefs. You put just one denomination in charge of one school and watch the fur fly! …among Christians no less.

      But from the standpoint of your average Christian, the second problem is even worse – and I can’t believe these people have not thought this through. Bear in mind, most of the people who whine about the lack of prayer in schools are always the same ones who complain about big government. Yet, these are the same people who want to put an unelected government official in charge of their child’s religious education! How stupid is that!

      My sainted brother-in-law once observed that if you really want to put an end to this school prayer crap, just go ahead and let these people do it. In six weeks they’d be at each other’s throats. In six more, most of them would be screaming about keeping schools neutral towards ALL religions. Which is what they should be doing in the first place.

      1. Yes, people have the freedom of religion. What is what this article is about. The fact is that any kid can choose to pray to any god in a non-disruptive fashion. That is totally allowed. But the school (or a school official/teacher) can’t FORCE students to pray to THEIR god… because we ALL have the freedom of religion… which includes the freedom not to exercise a religion at all.

    2. God is your creator. No catholic or christian would make a big deal of that. It is wrong for you to say things like that about what people believe.

    3. Yeah no human can just form, someone shaped then, and he made them in his own image. How was a Universe made of nothing? I see you had no comment about that.

      1. I have? In what way? I merely pointed out the fact that yes, universes pop in and out of nothingness all the time. i guess that is “darkness” in the sense that the universe is dark, but not in the sense of me being negative in any way.

    4. Yeah, ok your point sucks, God formed the Universe, and the Bible proves, science just ignores it even though its true. God has performed many miracles, say Our Lady of Guadalupe.

    5. Citation. You know, where are you getting your information? You said that the Bible has been proven scientifically. Please tell me what specifically was proven and give me a link to that study.

      1. This link talks about how NASA publicized results of tests, but it does not link to those results. The really odd thing is that NASA is a space agency. So why would they run tests on a painting? And again, where are these “publicized” results? One down.

      1. “1. It has qualities that are humanly impossible to replicate.” So does Stary Night and yet no one is claiming that paiting is divine.
        “2. People say it’s just a painting, yet the tilma has outlived them all, in time and in quality.” So does Stary Night… and almost every other piece of art. They all outlast their critics because material things often times last longer than a human life time.
        “3. The tilma has shown characteristics startlingly like a living human body.” Again, no actual studies cited. Just mere assertions with no real data or evidence to back it up. Why didn’t the writer of this article link to the actual analysis? Has this been peer reviewed?
        “4. It appears to be virtually indestructible.” This does not seem like it was really tested and for the record, I don’t think it should. But I could make the same argument about Stary Night. Since it has not yet been destroyed, I can make the claim that it is “virtually indestructible.” But if I took a match either, I bet they both would burn. Still not a good idea though. All art should be valued.
        That’s three down.

      1. This is shocking in that this was a presentation by actual professionals that contained zero citations. Again, this is just like all the other links you presented except for the fact that these two people should know better.

      1. Thanks for the #ChristianLove. As I pointed out to you in a comment on another article, it is telling that you think I should be tortured for all eternity because I don’t believe a ridiculous claim on insufficient evidence. Let me ask you, do you support torturing everyone who doesn’t believe your ridiculous claim that a painting is alive? Do you really believe that to be the moral position?

      1. You are the one hurling insults and saying that I should be tortured for all eternity because I don’t believe in ridiculous claims on insufficient evidence, but I am the negative one? Really? okay. lol

      1. Not negative at all.
        Oh, and you are not jut “explaining” what will happen after death (which you have no evidence for, btw), you are advocating for my eternal torture. You are claiming that it is the right and just thing for people to be tortured merely for not believing in ridiculous claims based on insufficient evidence.
        Let’s say that God was real and hell was real too. You could acknowledge that you don’t agree that people should be tortured and the you refuse to worship any being who allows for people to be infinitely tortured for finite transgressions. You could take a moral stand against God on this one. But instead, you have rubbed this imaginary punishment in my face. “Ha Ha you will be tortured for all eternity. ” Is not a nice thing.

    6. Ha here is what i mean. In your case it depends what you do and how you do it (that goes for everyone) in your case, expressing a public site against God, and religion, not a good thing.

      1. God is imaginary! Religion is not. My public site exposes the harm that actual people who believe in ancient superstitions do to other actual people and society because of their ancient superstitious beliefs. My point is that religious people cause actual harm. Pointing that out and attempting to get them (and you) to stop believing things that cause harm to others is a good thing. It is maybe the best thing. You are Catholic. So let’s start there. The Catholic Church has actively protected child sex offenders for who knows how long. The Catholic Church still preaches that homosexuality is a sin and that gay people shouldn’t be allowed to love each other. The Catholic Church still treats women as second class people and refuses to allow them to serve in their leadership as priests. The Catholic Church still believes that condoms are more evil than AIDS. While here in America, that may not be a big deal, in some countries in the developing world, that view is responsible for the death of countless people who actually believe that crap. To the Pope’s credit, he at least recognizes the threat of Climate Change (many other Christian sects do not). The list of actual harms that Christianity, other religions, and religion in general cause is nearly endless. I have been writing for over 20 years and I am never short of material.

      1. First, I listed a laundry list of actual harms the Church causes and you only single out one to attempt to defend. The fact of the matter is that the Church is against marriage equality for gays and lesbians. This is not just their opinion; they actually use their political power to enforce that opinion. So maybe they don’t think that the people themselves are evil. I didn’t say they did, but they are causing actual harm to those people’s lives by fighting against marriage equality. This Pope has been better on this issue than the last Pope, but he is still way behind where society is on this issue.

    7. Wow, as a kid, I guess I really don’t know how other churches feel. But my church is fine with it, not saying that we agree with the decision, my mom has even told me that in our family we have gays. But we still love them.

      1. The Pope has made it clear that being gay is okay, but actually having gay sex or marrying a gay person of the same gender is not okay. This has been the Catholic Church’s position and while this Pope hasn’t pushed as hard on this issue as the last Pope, he still holds this position. Catholic Charities even attempted to blackmail the city of Washington DC because DC was going to pass a marriage equality bill before the courts decided the case. I’m proud that DC didn’t back down even though Catholic Charities attempted to blackmail them on this issue. So when you tell me that the Church isn’t anti-gay, I have to inform you that you are incorrect. You do not know that facts. You should really look into it. The Catholic Church is horrible on this issue and many others. Some of which I listed above and you have ignored. You are a young woman; how does it feel to know that the Church will always see you as a second class person. You will never be able to be a Catholic Priest even if you wanted to purely because you are not a man. Does that seem fair to you in the 21st century?

    8. Ok, I would agree with the Pope, except they can get married if they want to. I would think the person the same, just i wouldn’t agree with marrying the opposite gender.

    9. Sure, this is why we will never see a shooter entering a Christian house of worship and committing mass murder. Oh wait, we have. Never mind.

    10. Do you want hope? which seems better,
      A.) “Jesus Christ created me and then died for me so that I could live forever in paradise with him if I would only accept his free gift of this eternal Joy!”
      -OR-
      B.) “I happened by accident and when I die I will be nothing” (warning: this is a lie, you will actually spend eternity in hell as your choice, free will to refuse the free gift)

      I chose A.

      1. First, you are a troll because your comment has zero to do with this article. This article isn’t about what happens when you die; it is about school sponsored prayer. Please keep your comments on topic. You can easily find a dozen or so articles on this blog where your comment would be more appropriate.
        Second, This has zero to do with hope. I hope to live a good solid life and then to die. I don’t think you have thought through this whole eternity thing. I mean, do you know how long that is? I think after a few hundred years you will be bored out of your mind. But you are stuck in the most boring place in ever forever! That’s like a hundred, hundred, hundred, billion, zillion years… That’s your idea of hope? What about the realization that people who didn’t believe exactly like you are being tortured for all eternity? Injustice anywhere is an injustice everywhere. That wouldn’t bother you? It’s a moot point because it isn’t real. It is make believe!
        Third, that brings me to this final point. It isn’t a choice. This is fucking how the world works. We live and then we die. This isn’t fucking Super Mario Brothers. We don’t get extra lifes. This is it. What would you rather believe, that you are a fabulously wealthy good looking person who farts rainbows, or some Christian troll on the internet? Why would you choose B?

    11. This whole arrival is fake. You probably made because you are atheist. So what if you don’t believe in God, it doesn’t give you the right to say that Christians can’t pray for everyone at school!

    12. See white ppl like you believe there is no god because you weren’t created by god. If you see the DNA of a white man you will see that they have Neanderthal DNA in them this why they believe in evolution. But listen white people are genetic muatation of black this is proven, white people were the sub-human not black people. Let’s break down the word Hu-man. HUE means color, Man just means man. Put it together you get colored man. But when the white man came it changed to man kind. Hence (different KIND of MAN). Now the main question I’m getting is to is what was that genetic muatation that created white people ? In my bible it says that fallen angels AKA demons fornicated with the humans of earth tainting there seed creating the devils seed (devils children) nephillim (you should read the Bible to understand more of how it spread) Just as the Bible prophecied. This explains why the white mans history is nothing but demonic, slaughter and rape and enslaving and genocide and lies because you weren’t created by god you are created by your father the devil! I’m not saying that all white people are of the devil but this explain why ya believe in evolution it is inbidded I to you. The devil is here for confusion to confuse the mind of gods people. And this school system is doing just that. Who are you to say that my god doesn’t exist. Who are you to make that decision for me!?? Nobody!! You don’t have all the answer to the universe neither do I. This why I go with my instincts and my instincts tell me that there is a god. But the school system doesn’t want you to use your instincts because that’s when you began to question there lies! And we all know they aren’t telling us the truth and they never have and they never will!

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