You read an excerpt from "The Nine" that described some cases from the 1990s and early 2000s dealing with 'religion in the public square' and we discussed those in class earlier this week, but for these blog comments we're going to look at some much more recent instances of controversy arising around religion in schools--is it about Government Establishment of Religion or is it about Free Speech?
Click Here for a New York Times article that describes many recent cases in which students, teachers, or administrators have been criticized for to some degree bringing religious activities into the public school setting. In some cases they wound up being punished for it; in others they simply stopped doing whatever they were doing and as a result faced no tangible consequence. After reading the article, consider the following questions:
- Of all the situations described in the article, which one did you find the MOST troubling? Or put another way, which one struck you as the most obviously unconstitutional? Why?
- Of all the situations described in the article, which one did you find the LEAST troubling (which would you consider the 'safest' in terms of its constitutionality)? Why?
- What were some similarities or connections you noticed between any of the situations described in the article and any of the discussions we've had in class, either with me or from the day Mr. Mueller was there?
- I realize you don't have all the background or context and you're basing it just on having watched this short video, but what was your take on this situation? Do you think the school did the right thing?
- Which of the two guests on the show did you think made the stronger argument? Why?
- What was your take on this situation? Did you find yourself agreeing more with Ms. Hildenbrand (the valedictorian) or with the Schultz family (who filed the original suit)? Why?
- If the Class of 2012 valedictorian at CHS wanted to include a prayer in his/her speech this June at your graduation, would you have a problem with it? Why/why not?