@ Daniel LI'm not sure how you make a belief system out of
atheism - or theism for that matter. Both apply to one subject and one subject
only: one's position on the existence of gods. I can see them as single
positions within a philosophical system, but not an entire philosophy by
themselves.I do agree that humans generally are capable of
oppressive regimes, whether housed under the name of religion or not. Dogma,
mythology, and/or cult of personality appear to be some of the common factors.
However, with respect to North Korea, Jong-un and his father and grandfather are
believed to be gods, so theirs is a theistic regime, if not a religious one.
Theology is a philosophical study of God's relation to the world. Atheism
is a philosophical disbelief in the existence of God. In other words - it is
philosophy versus philosophy. It just so happens that Atheistic philosophy is
the popular wind that happens to blow at this moment. The Constitution
guarantees that the federal government will not support any one religion (i.e.,
philosophy) in order to promote the free sharing of ideas and thought in our
country that we might obtain greater wisdom in this journey we call life. Religious philosophy, say some critics has stifled thought in the past
and present - and that is true. Non religious philosophies have done the same
and continue to do the same today. North Korea is no friend of any religious
philosophy. The point being that any philosophy (ideas and systems
of belief) have the potential to create oppressive regimes that ban and make
illegal any expression outside of such approved ideas and system of thought. Any atheist can be just as guilty as any religious person of such
StandAlone:"@ the atheistTruth is hate only to those
who hate the truth. Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus
is the Christ, including non-Christians."And here comes the
threats. Threats from a person who believes they are speaking for a 'loving
god'. (Later saw that you claim these arent threats but clearly they
are.)n8ive american:"Isn't atheism a form of
religion? So now we have schools filled with that religion."No,
atheism isnt a religion any more than not collecting stamps is a hobby. You are
an atheist to thousands of gods man has created. I only believe in one less than
you do. When you understand why you dont believe in Odin then you may start to
understand why I dont believe in Yahweh.
Are teachers likewise being required to remove displays of their secular beliefs
including political views, social views, and other personal viewpoints? If so,
then this rule can credibly be viewed as the school attempting to prevent
teachers from pushing any personal view on students.If however, non
religiois personal views can be expressed--and that would include everything
from Garfield and Dilbert calendars right on up to memes regarding our
President, immigrants, or any other socio-political issue--then this rule
appears to be hostile to religion rather than a religiously neutral rule that
happens to affect religious belief and expression no more nor differently than
it affects any other personal expression.A school district has a
legitimate interest in assuring that only official school positions are
expressed by school employees when acting in their employed capacity.No government entity can be allowed to single out religious views to silence
while permitting a-religious or even anti-religious viewpoints to be freely
@TheRealDJT - Sandy, UTNothing in the article said the teachers
couldn’t wear a cross, or religious iconography. Only that the could not
display it in the classroom. So, a Sikh student can still wear a turban. A
Muslim girl can wear a hijab. A Jewish boy can wear a yarmelke. And a teacher
can wear a nun’s habit.What the school told the teachers, was that
their religious iconography cannot be in the class room. I’m sure the
school allows the teachers a personal space to display whatever religious
display they would choose. Just as the school would be compelled to allow a
Muslim teacher time and space (read as accommodation) to pray if requested by
the by the employee. But, I think there is some info missing about this story.
Like, what exactly was the teacher doing with these crosses, quotes, and angels?
Were they just on her desk? Or did she make reference to them throughout the day
to her students, or insist the students do something with them items. There is
too much missing context, and it makes this article a tad inflammatory.
bassoonlady,I appreciate the attempt to "spin" it, but it
fails. The statement is a totalitarian manifesto, especially
invoking the image of subservience (bowing and confessing as if under
duress).If it really was an innocuous statement of faith, as you
claim, why the "bowing of the knee" in subjection?No, it is
meant as a totalitarian threat against non-believers and non members. It is unfortunate that religious believers are blind to their arrogance,
hubris, and oppression of others.
The atheist,The statement "every knee shall bow" is not meant to
be a threat any more than saying, "at some point in the future everyone will
believe in global warming because the evidence will be too great to deny."
is a threat.It's an affirmation of our faith, saying that we
believe so firmly in this truth that we believe that at some point all those who
do not now believe will be unable to deny the evidence, that point being when
Christ again comes to the Earth.I'm sorry that you see it as
arrogance and a threat. That being said, I think that if these
teachers had, say, a discrete cross on their desk meant just for them, then
they shouldn't be forced to remove it. But if the religious symbol was
overtly displayed in such a way that students were commonly seeing it, it should
@ n8ive american - "Isn't atheism a form of religion? So now we have
schools filled with that religion."Theism is not a religion;
Catholicism is.Atheism is not a religion; pastafarianism is.A
systematized belief that Joseph Smith literally and physically communed face to
face with god is a religion; the absence of such a belief is NOT a religion.
Atheism, as the name suggests, has no systematized beliefs.People
grouping together around a common set of beliefs in a supernatural or supreme
power is religion; NOT grouping together (because there are no common beliefs
labelled as "atheism") is NOT a religion.Sectarianism is all
about religion; secularism is not.Being flippant about the (lack of)
beliefs of others, and condemning them because they aren't a
"member" of your faith group, is characteristic of religion (or tribes,
or college sports); atheists are not a "corpus" with
"membership", so that concept is irrelevant to "atheism".Glad I could help.
I used to teach a 6th Grade class called "Introduction to Foreign
Cultures" .We went over Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Shamanism and
many other religious practices that called our attention. We discussed them as a
component of the cultures that evolved around the world.In my 21
years of association with the Public School System, I have never seen or felt
that any student or school worker has been subjected to remove any component of
their attire that can be connected to their religious beliefs.I have
taught Spanish Literature in High School and College and have quoted the Bible,
the Koran and the Vedas when appropriate to illustrate a point. Perhaps, I am being hypocritical. But I totally agree with the school system
preventing teachers from displaying dÉcor with religious connotations,
particularly at the Elementary School level. A teachers influence on
his/her students is too great to consider that there is such a thing as an
innocuous object in a classroom. Everything we put in our rooms carry a message
dedicated to our students.
Isn't atheism a form of religion? So now we have schools filled with that
"Truth is hate only to those who hate the truth. Every knee will bow and
every tongue will confess that Jesus is the Christ, including
non-Christians."It is completely irrational arrogance like that
by which you earn enemies.
This decision is hypocritical considering how many public schools, cities,
counties, etc. have religious names. If we're going to purge religion from
the public square, then we better start by changing the names of cities like Los
Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, San Antonio, St Paul, etc.
Interesting that they require the removal of inspirational quotes from
scriptures. Can we no longer quote Buddha or the Dalai Lama either? Can we only
have inspirational quotes from exclusively secular people now? Martin Luther
King Jr. was a pastor; are his quotes also out? It's a good thing no one
has started a religion about Shakespeare yet. Will we one day decide inspiring
people are just too close to religious people? Oh well . . . maybe this means I
can tear down all those inspirational posters plastered throughout the office
that I have secretly hated all these years.
I simply do not understand how religious people think public religious displays
can possibly work. I suggest imagining the Satanists putting their symbols up in
@ TheRealDJT"Another way to look at it: If there can be no
religious symbols in classrooms, then certainly Muslim girls will be required to
remove their hijabs, right ? No carrying around or storage of prayer
rugs...right?"Students AND teachers can wear religion-themed
clothing, jewelry, etc. It's on their person. Taxpayers don't pay
for that. And a lot of schools offer quiet rooms for prayer/meditation.
They're non-denominational; not just for god-believers. Do you see the
@ the atheistTruth is hate only to those who hate the truth. Every
knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is the Christ, including
So no Christian symbols displayed in public schools, but it's okay for
teachers in Madison Wisconsin to force students to "pretend they are
muslim". And it's all right for teachers in Florida to force
students to recite "the five pillars of islam" as a prayer, make islamic
prayer rugs and perform other muslim rituals. And it's acceptable
for teachers to force students in Tennessee to write a declaration that
"allah is supreme".How interesting the Godless demand only one
kind of religion be removed from the public square, while others are welcomed.
Good, religion and its symbols have no reason to be in schools or the public.
Keep them in your church..........
"A teacher having a cross on her desk is, in no way, establishing
religion."First off, it is not the teacher's desk. It is
public property. Second, if it is OK for her to display her cross on the desk
she occupies would it then be OK to place them on the walls where her class
takes place? And if that's OK, why not hang a cross in the hallway on the
door leading into the classroom. How about hanging a cross outside
"her" school at the entrance. Removing the religious
material from school is what in no way establishes a religion.Ironically, it was in Utah that a school teacher made a student wash a cross
off of his forehead.
This is the correct decision.
Imagine the brown storm that faux news and todays fake conservatives would be
producing if this were a bunch of Muslim teachers filling their classrooms with
Islamic iconography. But because its xians who are doing it we will all be
hearing about 'religious freedom'. For context look back
to the proposed mosque in downtown Manhattan and the fit the right collectively
thru. They acted as if somehow all of downtown was suppose to become a xians
only zone or something. We sure didnt hear any of them 'standing up for
religious freedom'. Xians, particularly right wing xians in
this country are really starting to miss their position of power as more and
more people leave religion. Muslims think they are right and xians
are wrong. Xians think they are right and Muslims are wrong. I think
they are both half right.
"If prayer is not speech to God, then what is it?"I believe it is
talking to yourself and getting the answer you wanted."How can
anyone believe they have the right to tell you and I who we can talk to?"I read the story and didnt see anything resembling that."People burn the American flag because somebody said that the first
amendment protects "freedom of expression"."Yes, so? When a
teacher does it in class then you can complain."Religious
symbols and scripture passages should also be protected as "freedom of
expression"."And they are. Any teacher can cover their property
with all the crosses they want. They cant fill their classrooms in a PUBLIC
school with them."They are using the first amendment to destroy
the very things that the first amendment was intended to protect."Are
you claiming the writers of the constitution meant to include a provision for
teachers to force their religion on their classrooms, but just forgot? Weird."When students in a Montana school wore black armbands ... rights do
not end at the school house door."Exactly. Students."Teachers constitutional rights don't end at the door either."Their right to force religion does.
Another way to look at it:If there can be no religious symbols in
classrooms, then certainly Muslim girls will be required to remove their hijabs,
right ? No carrying around or storage of prayer rugs...right?Sikh
men will be required to shave and wear no turban...right?Or do the
rules only go against Christians ? hmmmm......
Well, the devil really is in the details. A teacher should not be allowed
to impose her religious beliefs on children.But that is not quite the same
as a requirement to purge classrooms of all religious symbols. The
truth is that the Constitution clearly delineates the right to "free
expression of religion", while there simply is no "freedom from
religion". The mere presence of religious symbols, but teachers and or
students, is not in any way imposing anything on anyone. It is their right of
free expression of religion. Sorry, athiests. Freedom of religion is the
price we all pay for "freedom", including the freedom to be an atheist.
The freedom of religion in the 1st Amendment was written to prevent the nation
having an official national religion, such as England have their official
religion being Anglican or other countries have the Roman Catholic religion. It
meant that everyone has the right to belong to any religion or no religion. At
the time the amendment was written a national religion required worship in that
church if you wanted government employment, attend state schools, or even own a
business (depending on the country).It was never intended to keep
people from expressing their religious faith in any forum. A teacher having a
cross on her desk is, in no way, establishing religion. As long as the teacher
is respectful of other faiths and doesn’t force her students to follow her
beliefs no harm is done.
@The Rock - Federal Way, WAMarch 28, 2019 10:47 p.m.The first
amendment guarantees freedom of religion, freedom of speech and freedom of the
press.If prayer is not speech to God, then what is it? How can anyone
believe they have the right to tell you and I who we can talk to?"There's also separation of church and state. You can talk to
whomever/whatever you want. But, when you're in a government owned school
and receiving a government paycheck, keep your religion to yourself. Plenty of
time to pray or whatever at home and on your lunch break. If you really need
church/religious stuff all day, go work for a church.
@ The Rock"When students in a Montana school wore black
armbands..."That's the distinction. They were students,
not teachers. Students aren't government employees. Public school
teachers are and are subject to 1st Amendment restrictions of government
favoring a belief system.And do you really believe the Christians in
this community would stand for it if a teacher who is Muslim, Pagan, or whatever
populated his/her classroom with items representing their faith? We already
know the answer because we have examples of Christians with this mindset
suddenly becoming quite willing to remove their religious displays from public
property when they realize it means that others, like The Satanic Temple, also
have the right to put up theirs.The Christians that complain about
things like this have no idea what a service organizations like the FFRF are
doing for them. They're actually protecting them from thoughtlessly
undermining a fundamental right that protects them too.
A teacher is the public official in the eyes of his/her charges in the
classroom. A representative of the power structure that puts order into their
young lives.It is coercive for this public person to overtly display
religious symbols into the classroom. Period. A child who comes
from a family with a different expression of religion or no expression of
religion will be under the impression that the teacher is the authority figure
for which they must accede in all things. And I doubt it ends with symbols.I don't think any parent of any particular religious sect wants
their child to feel coerced by an outsider. This is not a case of religious
freedom for the teacher. It is a case for religious freedom from coercion for
Good decision. Religious activists are trying to violate the Constitution and
inject their religion into the public. It must not be allowed.This
is NOT "a Christian nation" - never was, never will be. This is and must
remain an inclusive, diverse and secular nation.The so-called
prophecy that "every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that jesus is
the christ" is an ominous threat against non-believers and non-christians,
and constitutes intolerant hate speech.
I don't see this as an attack on the teacher's freedom of religion or
freedom of expression. As the complaint states, it is "religious displays
on district property" that crosses the line. The teacher cannot use public
property to promote or display her beliefs. The teacher is not being asked to
remove any symbol from her person. Wearing a necklace with a Latin cross is
far different from hanging a Latin cross on the wall. This is truly a
"no-brainer"."The law has been turned against itself.
They are using the first amendment to destroy the very things that the first
amendment was intended to protect."The law and the first
amendment is being used as intended.
The first amendment guarantees freedom of religion, freedom of speech and
freedom of the press.If prayer is not speech to God, then what is
it? How can anyone believe they have the right to tell you and I who we can talk
to?People burn the American flag because somebody said that the
first amendment protects "freedom of expression". Religious symbols and
scripture passages should also be protected as "freedom of
expression".The law has been turned against itself. They are
using the first amendment to destroy the very things that the first amendment
was intended to protect.When students in a Montana school wore black
armbands as a political statement in the 1960's, the Supreme Court ruled
that a student's constitutional rights do not end at the school house door.
Teachers constitutional rights don't end at the door either.