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Earlier this year, state lawmakers in South Carolina introduced bill H. 3526, which would require teachers to lead a moment of silence at the beginning of each school day. During this moment of silence teachers would be allowed to conduct a prayer, but students would also have the choice to opt out and remove themselves from the classroom. Falling in line with South Caroline, is now the 2nd most religious state in the U.S, Alabama.

Alabama’s House of Representatives have gone one step further. Instead of calling for a moment of silence, the representatives have pushed a bill through requiring teachers and students in the public schools to spend 15 minutes every morning in CHRISTIAN prayer.

From the  Montgomery Advertiser:

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Steve Hurst, R-Munford, would require teachers to spend no more than 15 minutes in the first class of each day to read, verbatim, opening prayers said before a meeting of the U.S. House of Representatives or the U.S. Senate.

Rep. Mary Sue McClurkin, R-Indian Springs, chairwoman of the committee, said she heard more votes in favor of the bill.

“It’s what I heard as chairman,” she said.

The committee also passed a religious expression bill, sponsored by Rep. Mack Butler, R-Rainbow City, that would allow students to initiate prayer in school and express their religious views in their schoolwork. The bill would also require schools to adopt a policy to reinforce those rights.

Butler, who served on a school board for 10 years, said the purpose of the bill is to communicate to school administrators and teachers what’s legal. He said he knows teachers who are scared to death because they don’t know where to draw the line.

“Every bit of this bill is already legal,” Butler said. “It’s just that no one knows it’s legal.”

Beech said she didn’t understand why a bill legalizing actions that are already legal under the U.S. Constitution was needed.

If you’re going to pass a vote on making prayer mandatory, why not make all prayer mandatory?

 

Clutchettes, what do you think about the bill?

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  • geeenababe

    I don’t like this. Like the last sentence said if you’re going to make prayer legal, why should only one type of prayer be allow? You either open it up for all prayer or follow the rules that keep separation between church and state.

    • Aria08

      Exactly. Why not make it a “moment of silence” instead?

      Everyone would have the opportunity to pray to their deity of choice, and the agnostics and atheists can just read or something.

  • MommieDearest

    This is extremely problematic. They should have left it at a moment of silence. Every taxpayer who sends their child to public school is not a Christian, and may not take kindly to their child being forced to participate in a practice that goes against their own religion. I believe in freedom of religion, but IMO it is a personal choice. It should not be made for you by a government institution. If it is important to you that your child is in a school environment that supports prayer and the Christian faith, then send your child to a private Christian school. And I say this as a Christian who sends my child to a private Christian school.

  • Belle

    There is no way that this will survive a Supreme Court challenge, nor should it. Republican leaders are quick to criticize countries that are ruled by Sharia law, while trying to turn the US into a theocracy.

    On a slightly unrelated note, remember that judge who decided that the baby named Messiah had to have his name changed? Her ruling was overturned and she was fired.

  • worldviewes

    @ MommieDearest – it is not mandatory. It states that the student is allowed to remove him/herself from the class during that time. Religion should not be forced. But at the same time it shouldn’t be illegal for a child to practice those rights. Stop and think…as soon as it was removed from schools more viloence began to ring through schools! This world as a whole has became so acceptable of any and everything just so someone doesn’t feel left out.

    • MommieDearest

      The fact that the students have the option to leave the classroom during prayer is small consolation, IMO. The average child will not want to draw unwanted attention to him/herself, so he/she will feel compelled to stay in class during prayer.

      I agree with you that the level of violence in schools has increased since religion was removed. However I don’t think that any one religion needs to be emphasized over others because that’s a form of religious persecution. With the moment of silence, anyone is free to pray, or not, in his or her own way without being singled out.

    • 1Love

      Prayer was never removed from schools. The devil & that talking point are lies! Individual students can pray on their own during the school day as long as it does not interrupt school functions.

      The 1st amendment guarantees each citizen “freedom of religion AND freedom from religion”

      @worldviewes Please read something other than a Bible (BTW, I’m a Christian if it makes you feel better.)

    • GeekMommaRants

      I’m curious to know, in your opinion, what religious believes would not be able to partake in this law? Will Muslim children be able to pray three times while at school? Will children raised in the Voodoo tradition be able to worship during school hours? The religious always forget that there are thousands of faith traditions, always.

  • http://www...gmail.com freethinker

    As a atheist mom,i imagine it would be hard for kids who are not being raised without religion.i remember that girl who was bullied by her peers for not wanting to participate in their prayer session.kids can be brutal, spacially,when guided by the fanaticism.
    I want kids to distinguish science from
    Superstition which is vital to undertand their enviromment.
    I’m glad where i live the separation of church and state is the law of the land and i’m a firm believer that religion should be
    a private matter.

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