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NeoNotes — Religion in public schools

One reason why the public school movement gained so much ground in America was in direct response to Catholic schools. Control over what should be taught in public schools is a distraction.

Hardly anyone asks if there should be public schools in the first place.

Mandatory school attendance is backed by the force of law. Much of it has degenerated into who gets to control the conditioning. Which raises some interesting questions. The Daily Caller reports that the Mountain Ridge Middle School in West Virginia requires students to write out the Shahada to practice calligraphy. There are no requirements to write out Christian or Jewish affirmations, and apparently those are not part of the curriculum. Obviously Buddhist and pagan beliefs aren't included either.

Why is this a big deal and a much bigger deal than is being reported? According to Islam, reciting the Shahada makes one Muslim forevermore.

I want to stress that the issue is not Christianity, Islam, or any other faith. The issue is public schools requiring faith lessons. If public schools force religion on the students, then most likely they are teaching other questionable propaganda as well. We notice the religion because as members of minority faiths that is one thing our antenna are tuned for, we overlook the other.

All of this returns to the question why have public and compulsory schools to begin with?
NeoNotes are the selected comments that I made on other boards, in email, or in response to articles where I could not respond directly.

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Thursday roundup

Headlines that don't merit their own entry

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Celebrate

Celebrate your beliefs and cherish your faith. All I ask is the same. Just don't demand that my beliefs and actions are bound by yours. Live and let live.

What you believe isn't important to me. Your freedom to choose what to believe, that is vital. That is what I will defend.
     — NeoWayland, A Pagan looks at “Christian America”

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Live under their beliefs

Why should I be expected to live under their beliefs if they aren't willing to live under mine?
     — NeoWayland, United We Stand - Dragging religion into politics
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My faith

My faith and beliefs are at least as important to me as yours are to you.
     — NeoWayland
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Legislation and morality

Legislation is not morality, and morality certainly isn't legislation. The distinction must be made. Otherwise politicos wrap themselves in the flag AND hide behind the most convenient faith/moral code they can find. Arguing over morality keeps us honest. We're better when we verbally defend our ideas to people who don't necessarily share our beliefs.
     — NeoWayland
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Purge a belief system

It's never common sense to purge a belief system, especially when you do it in the name of moral superiority.
     — NeoWayland
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Enlightened

No matter what the belief system, the truly enlightened don't need to call themselves that.

Or justify it either.
     — NeoWayland
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Govern

Your beliefs shouldn't govern my behavior.
     — anonymous
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“Who said I don't believe in gods?”

Who said I don't believe in gods?

If anything, I don't believe in your beliefs. But that's okay, you don't believe in mine either. I could qualify it and say more specifically I don't believe in your understanding of your beliefs (and I'm pretty sure you don't either), but that is complicating things far beyond what is needed for the conversation here. Not to mention being incredibly self-referential.
     — NeoWayland

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