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Speaking of Church/State lawsuits…

prayer.jpgDown in Texas, the Croft family is suing their local school district (and Texas Governor Rick Perry) because their three children are required to “suffer” through a moment of silence at their elementary school. The Croft family says this amounts to state-sanctioned school prayer, and they want nothing to do with it. Fox Noise News says that the Crofts have “a history of complaints against religious-affiliated words and images in schools, having previously complained about Boy Scout rallies held during school, fliers sent home about Good News Bible Club meetings and the inclusion of ‘Silent Night’ and a Hanukkah song in holiday concerts.”

Texas is among twenty-five states which have a moment-of-silence law, requiring schools to hold a moment when students can reflect or pray or just shut the F up. In thirteen of the laws, including the Texas law here at issue, the statutes specifically say that prayer is one of the things students can do during this moment of silence. The Crofts claim that these laws are all unconstitutional, but that the ones which include the word “prayer” are particularly unconstitutional. They are relying upon the 1985 Supreme decision in Wallace v. Jaffree, which struck down an Alabama law requiring a minute of “silent meditation or voluntary prayer.” There’s an important distinction, however, in that the Alabama statute originally did not have “or voluntary prayer” — that language was added later, and the record said that the addition of this language was as a step to returning prayer into schools. That is, the moment of silence law was expanded to be given a specific religious purpose. That’s different from the Texas law, where (I believe) there has been no such expansion. Plus, the Supremes also said there’s nothing inherently wrong with a moment of silence.

Seems to me that the Crofts are sucking up judicial resources on an unnecessary and losing case. Why not just tell their kids to use that minute of silence to think anti-religious thoughts, or to think about what chores they have to do when they get home, or whatever? I’m just saying.

| Comments (3)


As with the previous post, you're omitting some relevant facts. The parents allege that teachers told the children unambiguously: "This time is for praying."

Puts a somewhat different spin on your second paragraph.

Up until a few years ago, I might have given the authorities the benefit of the doubt. But now it's obvious, that like "intelegunt duhsine" movement, the people behind this are religious right scumbags who oughta be chain whipped. Of course, I need to qualify this by stating that this is just my opinion.

I think that people get really out of hand with this stuff. I don't think that the teachers should tell the kids that it is time to pray, but I also don't think there is anything wrong with having a moment of silence for whatever. It seems like now anytime anything remotely religous happens people get all up in arms about it. Is it a terrible thing to even have the option of praying? When I was in high school we had an all student prayer meeting in a class room before school began once a week. that was until someone complained that it was offensive to them and we were no longer allowed to meet. I don't know how that could have possibly affended someone. If anything I felt like it infringed on my rights because other groups were allowed to meet at school, but ours was not because of our beliefs.