Friday, July 4, 2008

Big Brother strikes again

I'm enraged by a report that two British schoolboys were punished for refusing to 'pray to Allah' during a school religious education class.

Alsager School, near Stoke, has received furious complaints from parents after two Year 7 boys were punished for refusing to kneel to Allah during a religious studies class

One parent, Sharon Luinen, said: "This isn't right, it's taking things too far.

"I understand that they have to learn about other religions. I can live with that but it is taking it a step too far to be punished because they wouldn't join in Muslim prayer.

"Making them pray to Allah, who isn't who they worship, is wrong and what got me is that they were told they were being disrespectful.

Another parent Karen Williams said: "I am absolutely furious my daughter was made to take part in it and I don't find it acceptable.

"I haven't got a problem with them teaching my child other religions and a small amount of information doesn't do any harm.

"But not only did they have to pray, the teacher had gone into the class and made them watch a short film and then said 'we are now going out to pray to Allah'.

"Then two boys got detention and all the other children missed their refreshment break because of the teacher.

The grandfather of one of the pupils in the class said: "It's absolutely disgusting, there's no other way of putting it.

"My daughter and a lot of other mothers are furious about their children being made to kneel on the floor and pray to Islam. If they didn't do it they were given detention.

"I am not racist, I've been friendly with an Indian for 30 years. I've also been to a Muslim wedding where it was explained to me that alcohol would not be served and I respected that.

"But if Muslims were asked to go to church on Sunday and take Holy Communion there would be war."

. . .

A statement from Cheshire County Council on behalf of the school read: "The headteacher David Black contacted this authority immediately complaints were received.

"Enquiries are being made into the circumstances as a matter of urgency and all parents will be informed accordingly.

"Educating children in the beliefs of different faith is part of the diversity curriculum on the basis that knowledge is essential to understanding.

"We accept that such teaching is to be conducted with some sense of sensitivity."

I can tell you right now what the problem is. It's that those in authority - the teacher, and probably his/her superiors too - don't believe anything themselves. Because they have no overarching belief system of their own, they see no harm in making those under their authority give equal credence to any and all belief systems.

I can only say that if any child of mine came home to tell me about such a farce, I'd probably be charged with physically assaulting the teacher(s) concerned. This is absolutely beyond the pale.

It's yet another example of a Government organization or institution deciding what's good for our children, whether or not their parents agree. It wouldn't surprise me to hear that some American schools try to do the same thing in the next few years.

One hopes that the parents of the children so victimized will take appropriate action.



Mulligan said...

learning fundamentals of any religion in class is one thing. but, praying is an act of worship not study.

GEBIV said...

I wonder if the either of the boys name's happened to be Daniel...

SpeakerTweaker said...

I'm going to need therapy after reading this. My eye's twitching and everything...

"But if Muslims were asked to go to church on Sunday and take Holy Communion there would be war."

I don't recall anywhere in this story where any children were asked to do anything. Now, if some Muslim kiddies were forced to take communion, well, that'd rank in the Islamic community as The Shot Heard Round The World.

I'm with you; some teacher forces my kid to pray to ANYONE or ANYTHING, and there will be Hell To Pay.


Jerry said...

Amen, Peter, amen!

MadRocketScientist said...

Ya know, I'm an agnostic, I have zero religious traditions, and yet I have enough common sense to know that there is a stark and brilliant difference between learning about another religion, and taking part in the traditions and sacrements of a faith. I find the actions of the school to be reprehensible, and I have to agree with Peter on this.

Rogue Medic said...

If those clamoring for prayer and other school-run religious activity would realize that this is where having public institutions promote any kind of religious activity.

As long as we do not have a state religion, we should keep the state as far away from religion as possible. If we were to have a state religion, we need to realize that the same voters can change that state religion by vote.

Rogue Medic said...

I should have included "leads" at the end of the first paragraph.

phlegmfatale said...