Friday, May 26, 2006

An Outrage In California

"The more I study religions the more I am convinced that man never worshipped anything but himself." ~ Sir Richard Francis Burton

The regular readers of this blog know by now that I try to present a different perspective on the current events of the day, but I just can't come up with any other perspective on the following that is any different than anyone else's. With that said, I just can't ignore the significance of it, either.

Out of the great state of California, that state that produces people who can easily be compared with a breakfast cereal because of the seemingly high percentage of flakes, fruits and nuts, comes this incredible story of blatant hypocrisy by everyone's favorite Circuit Court of Appeals:

[T]he same court that found the phrase "under God" unconstitutional now endorses Islamic catechism in public school.

In a recent federal decision that got surprisingly little press, even from conservative talk radio, California's 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled it's OK to put public-school kids through Muslim role-playing exercises, including:

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.

Read the rest of the story, if you have the stomach for it, here. In fact, I recommend that you go ahead, hold your nose, and read it. All of it. It is imperative that freedom loving American Christians understand the implications of this decision.

This ruling by the 9th circuit court is so blatantly hypocritical that it is difficult, if not impossible, for me to see how anyone, even the most leftist of Liberals, can deny that this is blatant judicial activism at it's worst.

It would seem that the leftists twisting of the first amendment (The altering of the meaning of the words "freedom OF religion" to "freedom FROM religion") has again taken another twist to mean Americans are free to practice whatever religion we want in government institutions such as schools, as long as it is any religion other than Christianity.

Especially if it is a religion that teaches that anyone who practices any religion other than theirs should be wiped off the face of the planet.

Liberals across this great country should be embarrassed. I wonder if any Liberal is proud of what Liberal judicial activism has accomplished in this case.

Personally, I am embarrassed for them.

These Judicial activist judges must be removed from the bench with all expediency. And brought up on charges for treason. They are an embarrassment to Judges everywhere at best, and put the Constitutional rights of every American into extreme danger at worst.

This is so outrageous that I will be surprised if any of the Liberal apologists that comment here will have the guts to actually defend this blatant disregard for the first amendment as interpreted by other Liberal judicial activists. It will be interesting to see how ER and Jim and Dan Trabue will spin this to try to explain it as being Constitutional.

Go ahead, Liberals. spin away.


Sheila said...

Yah But, I can't find anything on it to really see the arguement. I've looked and can't figure out where to go to find the background and get the conclusion.

Where is the rest of the evidence besides this OP ED piece....I don't want to be outraged by someone's need to ""Outrage" us with another Fluff piece" until I have the facts.

Number 26 said...

I don't know how I am going to say this without sounding Pro-Islam, but I am getting from this "World Religion" class that ALL Religions are discussed. As a Roman Catholic who went to 12 years of Catholic schooling, my High School was pretty progressive in the 70's, it was mandatory that we studied "World Religions" as a JR & Sr, to better understand our global society, so that being said is it possible that conclusions are being made without truly understanding the whole curriculum?

Mark said...

Number 26, read the article. Christianity gets 2 days of study in which the students are taught the violent history of Christians, like the crusades, etc, while the studies of Islam get a favorable spin over more than 2 weeks.

Number 26 said...

I won't disagree with your side, but considering most of the holidays celebrated during the school year and in specifics most of the time off (Christmas & Easter) for these celebrations are Jedo-Christian in nature, I am taking the stand that they are trying to educate these 7th grade children about the other Cultures in our Global society. Higher education has been doing this for hundreds of years, and to take it one step further education in Europe had practiced this as well on an elementary level.

D.Daddio Al-Ozarka said...

There's your spin, Mark--as expected!


Carole said...

I just picked up your blog from the Google Posts of the Day. Don't even know why I opened up the site but glad I did.
You are brave to speak out about Christianity and this is evident by the comments you receive.
Quite frankly I looked to make sure my email addy would not show so that the hate mail would not stack up for deletion.
WTG Mark, I as a little old lady, support you so far.
By the way, I read you post about Oklahoma and 54 is not old.

Mark said...

Thanks Carole. come back often. But ....What post on Oklahoma?

Timothy said...

Numbers 26,
The problem is that what is taught about Christianity is a far cry from the reality of the religion. Mark is right, they don't teach the truths of the religion. As for our society already knowing this, we no longer live in a Christian society, but one that is post Christian.

The point is that they give a favorable spin to the religion of hatred, that calls for the death of all infidels, which you and I would be conisdered. The religion of true peace, which brings peace between God and man, is called hatred because it calls sin, sin.
Quite ironic....

ELAshley said...

I think everyone thus far has missed the point... The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has declared instruction in a religion is constitutional. The hypocrisy lies in the fact that Christians are generally casitigated, marginalized, persecuted, and made to be social lepers for freely practicing their faith, whereas, according to the 9th Circuit it's fine and dandy to teach children how to be Muslim.

School districts are forbidding the colors green and red during the "winter holiday," as well as changing the lyrics to "Silent Night" to avoid offending anyone other than Christians. But these same buffoons don't seem to care if Christians are offended by the forced-- and if a student is going to be graded on participation, it IS forced --indoctrination of a religion, expressly forbidden by the 1st Amendment.

Mark, I'm not so sure a charge of Treason is appropriate for these dangerously hypocritical idiots in black robes, but they certainly need to be impeached for violation of the 1st Amendment as interpreted by the self-same Liberal philosophy to which they so zealously cling.

Having said that, I'm not at all surprised... Offended, yes, but not surprised. The world is fast becoming what we've been promised it would become. For many that may seem a frightening prospect, but I personally find more comfort than fright in all this.

Still, what can we really do to change it? How much power do "We The People" really have? The ballot box?

Sheila said...

Ninth Court Ruling
Ninth Circuit Ruling

There Mark. I just wanted to see the whole picture.

I understand the Parent's side. They don't want their children exposed to something they are not comfortable with.

I understand the school's side too. They are trying to promote understanding and tolerance.

Tom said...

And they wonder why California is called the "Left Coast"...

Of course, anyone who brings up the inequality is then branded racist, intolerant, and a whole other host of nasty names. Pitiful...

Poison Pero said...

Do the kiddies get to chant and slit throats, too???

This is sick......1 more of the million reasons I'd never live in California, and swear by Charter and Private Schools.

Goat said...

Oh yeah our school system is under attack from every liberal radical wierdo group you can name. It is definately a strange state to live in, the right controls the vast acrage of California, the left controls the population centers of the "Gay" Bay and LA, nearly 2/3s the population total. Parents are waking up though thanks to talk radio and the web.

Liam said...

The problem isn’t with the court or with the decision; if you can’t tell the difference between education about and state sanction of a religion, then you don’t deserve the freedoms the American system gives you. From what little hard fact I can find about this case, I am quite happy that the court came to the correct decision – a school should be able to teach about religion.

If the plaintiffs had thought-through their motion a little further though, they would have made more headway asking for a ruling on the disproportionate attention given to Islam by the school.

I would be quite happy for children of mine to spend an hour a week for three weeks learning about Islam – even to this degree of cultural immersion: Learning by doing is one of the best ways of coming to terms with a subject. Where my problem arises is in Islam being the only religion taught in this way. Judaism and Christianity should be given at least equal weight of time and detail. There should also be time set aside for studying some of the other belief systems that are common in the world today.

Oh and, Pero, I’ll agree that slitting throats is representative of the Muslim faith on the same day you agree that molesting choir boys is representative of the Christian faith...

Dan Trabue said...

I wasn't going to post on this because I hadn't read the story. But since you mention me specifically ("It will be interesting to see how ER and Jim and Dan Trabue will spin this to try to explain it as being Constitutional."), I'll give it a shot.

As a Christian, I have no problem with religion being discussed in school for purposes of education. What I am opposed to is having somebody's half-baked idea of Christianity promoted as being what Christianity is.

So, I'm okay with, for instance, a discussion of the Salem Witch trials or the Civil Rights movement and the church's participation in (and opposition to) it. What I'm not okay with is, "All right children, let's bow our heads and pray for our soldiers to defeat the muslim infidels." or "All right children, let's face Mecca and pray that the Great Satan is destroyed."

Further, given the division in the world, I'm okay with Peace Education efforts to help better understand one another, Christians and Muslims, Americans and Arabs, etc.

It is a fine line and some of the actions you suggested in your original post seem to cross a line (if those suggestions were based in reality - requiring the children to practice Ramadan, to chant "praise be to Allah," they seem to be crossing the line, but then I must wonder about context).

And so, there you have it. Support for talking religion in schools in an educational sense but not in a promotional sense. Opposition to pushing one variety or the other of religion - whether Christianity or Islam.

Seems a commonsense position to me.

Mark said...

Let me explain myself more fully. I have no problem with the teaching of Islam in public schools.

In fact, I myself have read up on Islam to get a better understanding of what the religion is all about.

Teaching Islam in poublic schools is NOT the issue here.

It is the hypocrisy of the Judicial activists in this case.

If they are going to rule that the words "under God" in the pledge of allegiance is unconstitutional by violating the Courts misinterpretation of the first amendment, The the teasching of Islam is unconstitutional, also.

Conversely, if teaching of Islam in public schools is allowable under these judges misinterpretation of the first amendment, then teaching Christianity is allowable, too.

As I mentioned before: It appears the judges would allow the reciting of the pledge of allegiance in public schools, as long as the words, "under God" were substituted by the words, "Under Allah".

If one cannot see the obvious hypocrisy in this ruling, perhaps one should have been educated in something other than the public school system.

Mark said...

Exactly, Dan. When the schools spend two weeks teaching all aspects of Islam and all of it in a positive light, but only 2 days studying about Christianity and most of that time, in a negative light, it is hypocrisy.

And Judges actually ruling that it is constitutional to do exactly that is Judicial activism at it's worst.

I knew you would recognize how hypocritical that is. I also expected that you would downplay the outrageousness of it.

I wil say the same of you that my father used to say of me:

"You never surprise me, but you often disappoint me".

Liam said...

Mark, you are missing the point of the ruling by equating teaching about religion in schools with the state sanction of that religion. The First Amendment guarantees freedom of religion but it does not mean you have to strike all mention of religion from the public school curriculum. (For once you are the one advocating a ‘freedom from religion’ interpretation of the Constitution!)

The outrage here is the imbalance between the presentation of Islam and Christianity(*) and the depth of immersion into which the teaching allegedly went, but that wasn’t what was questioned in the suit so the courts didn’t have the option of ruling on it.

(*) See the second half of this article.

rusty shakelford said...

Trying to defend that decision is like trying to polish a turd (forgive the phrase) the 9th circuit is a liberal activist court that forwards its agenda by turning people off of Christianity because Christianity makes people self sustaining. Christians don't rely on the government so therefore they have to be crushed less their individualism spread. If you look at any liberal agenda you see a common thread. Dependence on the government. The 9th circuit is doing its best to get to the people while they are young.

ELAshley said...

Rusty's hit the nail on the head,

Goat said...

The American Thinker has posted a series of articles commenting on the differences in Christ and Mohammed.

Mark said...

Liam, you said, "Mark, you are missing the point of the ruling by equating teaching about religion in schools with the state sanction of that religion. The First Amendment guarantees freedom of religion but it does not mean you have to strike all mention of religion from the public school curriculum. (For once you are the one advocating a ‘freedom from religion’ interpretation of the Constitution!)"

No. I am not missing the point. I correctly stated that the 9th circuit court of appeals misinterprets the first amendment.

And, by their own misinterpretation, have shown themselves to be hypocritical by seemingly reversing their own previous decision, if only in favor of teaching Islam.

Liam said...

Good morning Mark.

One of the jobs of a court is to interpret the law so, by definition; unless the 9th Circuit’s view has been overturned by a higher court their interpretation of the Constitution is correct – at least within the jurisdiction of that court.

But that’s not really the problem. What I fail to see is how teaching about Islam is a limitation on anyone’s freedom of religion. No one has suggested the staff were trying to convert the kids to Islam. Can you explain how learning about different religions is a First Amendment issue please?

Jim said...

As long as liam is here, I need not comment...

But I will. Rusty uses the appropriate analogy in that most of his post is pretty much bullshit.

And if one is reciting a pledge of allegiance to a county and a flag, a pledge that one is expected, if not coerced, to recite, and that pledge includes the words "under God", then that version of the pledge is un-constitutional because it obviously endorses a religion. What could be more plain than that?

rusty shakelford said...

The 9th circuit decided against one Christian word that was enacted by the congress and decided in favor of making kids bow down to mohamed. So therefor (now stay with me Jim, I'm going to use logic) since the 9th circuit decided against one religion and for another then they must be in opposition to the particular religion and not just the idea of religion.

The only thing more “plain than that” is the bias you share with the 9th circuit court.

Jim said...


If you try to use logic with me, as if I don't understand logic, then you should be logical.

But you're not logical. Your logic is like I'm peeling an apple to make orange juice.

No court is making kids bow down to Mohammed. They are saying it is OK for a school to teach Islam and and perform Islamic rituals in order to learn the culture. There is not force involved.

There is no bias here, neither mine nor the court's. It is simply that a number of judges who have excellent credentials, many years of legal study and experience, the knowledge of precedent, and a respect for the Constitution happen to make a ruling with which you disagree. When you have the experience and knowledge to sit on that court and write your own dissent then I might be inclined to pay attention to your opinion on legal matters.