Archive for the ‘separation of church and state’ Tag

As a Christian, it’s my God-given responsibility to offend you in any way possible   6 comments

Ouch. It literally turned my stomach to write that title, but that is the exact attitude that some self-proclaimed Christians exude. They judge non-Christians, homosexuals/gays, single mothers (never the fathers of those out-of-wedlock babies), and anyone else who does not fit into their definition of a Christian. Never mind that simple and straight-to-the-point verse that says: ‘Judge not, that ye be not judged.’ (Matthew 7:1) Simply stated: Remember when you point the finger, three are pointing back at you. But sadly, not very many people are willing to openly judge the decision of the Cherokee County Board of Education to continue holding commencement ceremonies inside a church even though Jewish students have expressed their discomfort with the venue selection. I have a few issues with the board’s decision and the lack of support shown for the impending graduates as well as former Jewish students who missed their graduations because they were held in churches…

1. Did our country decide to do away with the ‘separation of church and state’ thingy and someone forgot to click ‘Send’ on the memo? If not, then why are publicly funded schools showing favor towards one religion (Christianity) by holding a school-sponsored (and funded) event inside a facility owned and operated by said religion? I sat through a Christian prayer at a publicly-funded school board meeting, where no recognition was given to any other religion. Is that not showing favoritism?

2. We encourage our kids to go to school, work hard, and earn good grades to prepare for college or other post-secondary plans. A high school graduation is the pinnacle of 13+ years of rules, early morning classes, uninteresting subjects/teachers, and overbearing education bureaucrats, yet some kids will miss that ceremony because they are not in the Christian ‘clique.’ As a student, I’d be pretty pissed. As a parent, I would support my child’s decision not to attend. But those two things are not enough. Oddly though, I doubt that any board of education in the bible belt would even seriously consider using a synagogue, mosque, or whatever as the venue for a high school graduation. Not a snowball’s chance in hell….

3. The justification excuse provided by the board is that other venues are too costly to rent for graduation ceremonies. During these tough economic times I can understand the need to tighten the purse strings, but someone will loosen them enough to pay the costs associated with renting the church. OK, so maybe the cost argument was a bad lame attempt to mask their lack of respect for Jewish students’ First Amendment Right. Perhaps to avoid conveying an attitude of apathy, the board could have decided to find a venue interested in a tax write-off (afterall, K-12 schools are non-profits) or they could have even opted to charge for tickets above the normal allotment of three per student. Maybe those options make too much sense…

I am not naive. I know that you cannot please all of the people all of the time, but this entire ‘discussion’ could have been avoided if the board, parents, and students of Cherokee County addressed the issue when it first arose several years ago. Usually, to avoid a repeat problems in the future most well-meaning people address them when they occur. Instead, the board would rather face a lawsuit (funded by tax payers), willingly accept the fact that well-deserving (Jewish) students miss their graduations, and reiterate what I have said time and time again: We still have a very long way to go and we ARE NOT living in a post-racial/religious/gender identity or anything-else society.

Monise, who is stealing imitating the style of her friend Jose Vilson and ending her blog with this thought: If she doesn’t stop fussin, cussin, and carrying-on like a heathen, she will be waiting on ‘Stand-by’ for her seat in heaven. Amen.