Equality Doesn’t Play Favorites

Whether any faction, religious or not, should be allowed access to America’s public schools is an issue of great debate. Bringing religion into play usually turns said debate into a very ugly creature, particularly if that debate involves the religious right. I recall once hearing the “horrible” news from my IFB pastor that a school somewhere was going to teach the children about Islamic practices – the whole church was mortified that such terrible things could be happening in America. Funny thing, though, that those same people were also offended when people wanted to limit Christian influences in school. Christian conservatives who push for prayer in public schools seem to forget that there are other forms of prayer that don’t involve Jesus or the Christian God – it’s not an “attack” on Christianity. 

Found this to be hilarious.

Anyway. The whole point of the government not getting involved in religion is for no one religion to be the pet, get special privileges, etc. (that’s putting it simply) – which is what was happening in England and most of Europe. The founders knew that government and church needed to be separate in a free society. Period. For that to work, what is allowed or disallowed for one religious group is applied to all others (or should be), in the name of equality. This applies to prayer/learning about religions in school. Most Christians want America to be a Christian nation, and actively seek to have Christian morality legislated and upheld all over the land, regardless of the non-Christians’ wishes. I’m afraid many conservative Christians feel they are somehow exempt from the concept of church and state being separate, and that they have a divine right to enforce their beliefs/rules on the rest of society.

Despite what the Bible may or may not have to say about the pursuit of new converts and imposing morality on infidels, the religious right better cool its jets before it receives real persecution as retaliation. America is the land of the free; that includes being free to believe as you wish, Christian or no. America is not and never will be some kind of religious state in which Christianity reigns and the Bible is law (not that we’re too far from that in many ways right now…). To the religious right I have this to say:  Instead of seeking special privileges, imposing personal beliefs on others, and whining about perceived persecution, please accept that the concepts of equality and tolerance apply to you just as much as they do everyone else. 

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