Google
 
Web rhymeswithright.mu.nu

February 16, 2012

Student Sticks To Principles, Quits HS Choir Over Religious Song

And let me say that I respect him for doing so – even though I believe that he and his supporters are dead wrong on this one.

A Colorado high school student quit the school choir after an Islamic song containing the lyric “there is no other truth except Allah” found its way into the chorus.

James Harper, a senior at Grand Junction High School in Grand Junction, put his objection to singing “Zikr,” a song written by Indian composer A.R. Rahman, in an email to Mesa County School District 51 officials.

“I don’t want to come across as a bigot or a racist, but I really don’t feel it is appropriate for students in a public high school to be singing an Islamic worship song,” Harper told KREX-TV. “This is worshipping another God, and even worshipping another prophet … I think there would be a lot of outrage if we made a Muslim choir say Jesus Christ is the only truth.”

Now I had a wahoo block me on Twitter over this one last night, and now I find my very good friend and fellow Watcher’s Council member Hube taking the other side on this one.

Hey, I agree with the district that a religious theme in songs is perfectly fine (the Christmas and Hanukkah season, for example); however, lyrics that promote the supposed truth of one religion over another certainly appears to be crossing the line. And, as noted, it should be something so-called "progressive" organizations should be all over like flies on you-know-what. So ... why aren't they?

I know. It's the 'ol "What the hell do we do when two competing politically correct ideologies conflict?" scenario. First , there's the obvious church vs. state issue, but then there's the PC promotion/protection of an "aggrieved" minority ingrained in their dogma which is combating the first "progressive" tenet. What to do??

Yeah, it is fun to tweak the ACLU and other Christianity-phobic liberals over their seeming hypocrisy – but doing so misses the entire problem with this controversy and the position taken by the student and his family.

The thing is, high school choirs do religious music all the time. Having been a high school teacher for over 15 years, I know this from experience. Choirs where I have taught has at various times performed Amazing Grace, Ave Maria, choral settings of various Psalms, and at least Jewish piece (and at that school there were ZERO Jews enrolled), among other things. Heck, a few years back I was talking about Gregorian Chant during my class and intoned the beginning of Salve Regina – only to have the four choir students in class join in because they were going to be singing it in a concert the next week. Courts have repeatedly upheld the use of such music in a high school programs based upon the musical quality of the works (see this case for an example) – and if the piece in question here is of similar quality (and nobody is disputing that point), then there is absolutely no reason to exclude it simply because it is Islamic rather than Christian or Jewish. After all, what is the difference between a song praising Allah and songs that are actual prayers or parts of Jewish/Christian Scripture? Nothing as far as I can see – at least not as regards the legal principles and pedagogical purposes involved.

Oh, and another couple of points folks overlook on this one. The students in the choir were told that they were not required to sing the song if they objected to it and that they would suffer no penalty for refusing to sing it. Apparently what this boy, his parents, and some of his supporters want is for NOBODY to be allowed to sing it – or hear it. So much for the notion that the kid is standing up for freedom – he wants nothing less than jack-booted censorship.

And a quick note to those who believe this song should be banned merely because it is Islamic – please realize that Handel’s Messiah, all Gregorian Chant, and the vast majority of European and American choral music composed over the last 1500 years will be joining the Muslim works in your bonfire of religious music. This is nothing less than sincere Christians doing the work of the atheists for them by making the case for banning religious works from the curriculum, even when used in a non proselytizing way.





|| Greg, 04:16 PM || Permalink || Comments (2) || Comments || TrackBacks (0) ||

Trackback Information for Student Sticks To Principles, Quits HS Choir Over Religious Song

TrackBack URL for this entry: http://blog2.mu.nu/cgi/trackback.cgi/280242
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference 'Student Sticks To Principles, Quits HS Choir Over Religious Song'.

Comments on Student Sticks To Principles, Quits HS Choir Over Religious Song

Greg: What about the following instances where the courts found it perfectly acceptable to THWART the use of religious songs in public schools?

http://www.njpsa.org/agr/news.cfm?newsid=506

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/03/22/BA541CJKEU.DTL

I think you and I are actually more on the same page than you think; after all, I'm a public school teacher too and have seen/experienced various controversies associated with church-state issues. But the cases above serve to make less than "clear" that such matters have been 100% legally resolved.

|| Posted by Hube, February 16, 2012 04:26 PM ||

A couple of points.

1) Graduation ceremonies are distinct from choir concerts. Given the decisions on prayers at graduation, some schools have decided to exclude anything that appears to be an official acknowledgement of religion -- including musical performances of songs with religious connotations. What the sfgate article cites is a case where a court held that a student cannot FORCE a district to include a religious song if the district chose to exclude it.

2) Similarly, the other decision notes that there is not a constitutional right to have religious music included in performances. Again, we are looking at a district that chose to exercise an overabundance of caution to avoid litigation -- but it does not indicate that the performance of such music is constitutionally forbidden.

|| Posted by Rhymes With Right, February 16, 2012 05:38 PM ||
Post a comment

Remember personal info?


 

 





AnotherMunublogSmall.jpg





Winner - 2014 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards
Winner - 2014 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2013 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2012 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2011 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2010 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Winner - 2009 Fabulous 50 Blog Awards

Posts by Category

Announcements (posts: 13)
Blogging (posts: 187)
Border Issues & Immigration (posts: 421)
deferred (posts: 4)
Education (posts: 685)
Entertainment & Sports (posts: 483)
Guns & Gun Control (posts: 65)
History (posts: 329)
Humor (posts: 88)
Israel/Middle East (posts: 44)
Medical News (posts: 54)
Military (posts: 273)
News (posts: 1570)
Paid Advertising (posts: 234)
Personal (posts: 108)
Politics (posts: 5261)
Race & Racism (posts: 281)
Religion (posts: 819)
Terrorism (posts: 884)
Texas GOP Platform Reform Project (posts: 4)
The Courts (posts: 310)
Watcher's Council (posts: 482)
World Affairs (posts: 345)

Archives

January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
December 0000



MuNuviana



Licensing

Creative Commons License
This weblog is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Powered By

Powered by
Movable Type 2.64
AnotherMunublogSmall.jpg

Administrative Stuff

Email Me
Syndicate this site (XML)

Advertising Disclosure

adpolicy.gif

About Me

NAME: Greg
AGE: 50-ish
SEX: Male
MARITAL STATUS: Married
OCCUPATION: Social Studies Teacher
LOCATION: Seabrook, TX
DISCLAIMER: All posts reflect my views alone, and not the view of my wife, my dogs, my employer, or anyone else. All comments reflect the view of the commenter, and permitting a comment to remain on this site in no way indicates my support for the ideas expressed in the comment.

Search This Site


Support This Site



Recent Entries

Who Is Regan Theiler And Why Was She Allowed To Spend Public Funds On A Sole Source Contract For Her Part-Time Employer?
Not My Idea Of A Stimulating Evening
About Trump's Liberty University Speech
Do Not Place The Secessionist "Texas Independence" Measure On The 2016 Republican Primary Ballot
Conservatives Vs. Liberal On Those Engaged In Violent Political Activity
Tom Mechler Makes His Case Against Moving The 2016 RPT Convention
Jared Woodfill Makes His Case For Moving The 2016 RPT Convention
Questions About Moving The 2016 RPT Convention
Reject The Call To Move 2016 Republican Party Of Texas Convention
It Is Too Bad That Political Parties Cannot Reject Voters Who Seek To Join, Stop Would-Be Candidates Who Want To Run

Blogroll


Watchers Council
  • Ask Marion
  • Bookworm Room
  • The Colossus of Rhodey
  • The Glittering Eye
  • GrEaT sAtAn"S gIrLfRiEnD
  • The Independent Sentinel
  • JoshuaPundit
  • Liberty's Spirit
  • New Zeal
  • Nice Deb
  • The Noisy Room
  • The Razor
  • Rhymes With Right
  • The Right Planet
  • Simply Jews
  • Virginia Right!
  • Watcher Of Weasels

  • Political & Religious Blogs