Original post on Libertarian Rock: “With the help of the ACLU, a Maryland high school student affirmed the line between church and state by forcing his school to end the traditional prayer at the graduation ceremony. The crowd ignored the request to abstain from praying and the student walked out in protest. Then the school punished the student, not the person who started the prayer.”A reader responds: I am a 16 year old Christian from Kansas City, MO and I have to say that what you have said about the recent occurrence of prayer in schools is somewhat shocking. As you may know, after the young man protested to the prayer at the graduation, another student loudly (while exercising his 1st amendment rights) began to recite the Lord’s Prayer as written in the gospel of the New Testament. This was followed by a large group of the student body joining in exercising their rights by also reciting the Lord’s Prayer. The 1st amendment guarantees freedom of religion, not protection from religion. If High School students desire to exercise their rights by praying out loud at school, the let them. If you can honestly say that children have the same rights as adults and that we have the right to expression and free speech, then you need to support the students who wish to pray in school or at school events. Freedom of religion guarantees the right to practice their religion as they see fit.
If a student sees fit to practice their religion (and long lasting school tradition) at a graduation ceremony and the majority of the students do not disagree, then the opposing student should have either sat quietly in opposition or gone to the restroom during the ceremony, not ruined graduation for the whole student body. Free will does not give you the right to destroy another’s special event; even if it is not special to you. Over the years the state has protected people using the 1st amendment. The ACLU is willing to defend those who are oppressed, and I support that. However I do not support the fact that Christian rights do not seem to apply.
Mary Oglesby Lee’s Summit, MO
Libertarian Rock responds: The school invited the prayer with the “moment of silence” and then supported the prayer by not demanding quiet. If a student started singing a song by a rock group, the school would have stopped him and forced him to leave the ceremony. Therefore, the government should not implicitly support religion by only ignoring religious outbursts.
Libertarian Rock supportsÂ Libertarian politicians who will end the government’s monopoly of schools, repeal school taxes, and repeal mandatory schooling. Parents will then have the money to send their children toÂ religious or secular private schools, or choose home-schooling.
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