Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Court OK's Compulsory Religious Education

A federal appeals court in California has ruled that public schools can require children to learn about religion...as long as the religion is Islam.

Investors Business Daily reports that the notorious Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled the state can require students to participate in "Muslim role-playing exercises." The exercises include:

Reciting aloud Muslim prayers that begin with "In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful . . . ."

Memorizing the Muslim profession of faith: "Allah is the only true God and Muhammad is his messenger."

Chanting "Praise be to Allah" in response to teacher prompts.

Professing as "true" the Muslim belief that "The Holy Quran is God's word."

Giving up candy and TV to demonstrate Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of fasting.

Designing prayer rugs, taking an Arabic name and essentially "becoming a Muslim" for two full weeks.

The article also notes that:

In the California course on world religions, Christianity is not presented equally. It's covered in just two days and doesn't involve kids in any role-playing activities. But kids do get a good dose of skepticism about the Christian faith, including a biting history of its persecution of other peoples. In contrast, Islam gets a pass from critical review.

Based on the above, parents of some of the students sued, claiming that the public schools were unconstitutionally promoting religion, in violation of the First Amendment.

The court disagreed, however, ruling that the state was teaching another "culture."

The Ninth Circuit is widely considered "the nation's most liberal and oft-reversed federal court."

We can only hope this case is taken to the U.S. Supreme Court and overruled also.

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