It certainly seems so to me; the people fighting hardest for such things as prayer in schools, the words "under God" in the pledge, etc., seem to want the government to not only officially endorse their private, personal religious beliefs, but also to mandate public demonstration of these beliefs, whether the person performing the...
It certainly seems so to me; the people fighting hardest for such things as prayer in schools, the words "under God" in the pledge, etc., seem to want the government to not only officially endorse their private, personal religious beliefs, but also to mandate public demonstration of these beliefs, whether the person performing the demonstration holds such beliefs or not. It is odd to me that were this practice examined in any other country, it would be--and is--derided, but there are many who are attempting to maintain and expand the same practices here.
How can such a double standard be excused? People do not realize the danger of expecting the government to officially validate and endorse private, personal religious beliefs, and to legislate and mandate that there be the exercise of public expression of such beliefs. Do religious people not realize that separation of Church and State is in place to guarantee their religious freedom? The only way for a government to maintain religious equality for all is for it to not legislate preference for any religion, to be above and separate from it. Legislation to enact mandatory observances not only destroys impartiality of religious treatment, but from a religious standpoint is counterproductive; after all, what religious observance has true meaning, that which is born of personal conviction, or that which is exercised only because it has been mandated by government legislation....? Fireball, this clearly is a pertinent question for this category. Groknor_34: Your answer shows the mindset that most American Christians have, and while it presents this situation as a simple one of respecting personal religious beliefs, ignores the fundamental--and necessary--separation between private and public life. The government is NOT obligated to "protect" any person's prerogative to subordinate the free operation of public institutions to the standards and exercises of their private life.
A public school is an institution of learning, and that is its entire purpose; it is NOT a person's home, and it is NOT a house of worship. A student should be in attendance to learn, and nothing more. These arguments about "protecting freedom of religion" are simply a mask to foster a visible public exercise of Christianity, and to have the government mandate and endorse the same. I doubt Christians would be so inclined to fight for the right of Wiccans to conduct spellwork in the classroom for the sake of "freedom of religion."