Against Prayer In School Why Prayer Should Not Be Part Of The School System.

1757 words - 7 pages

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." This is a key statement in the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. Also known as the Establishment Clause, this amendment separates the church and the state. "At an absolute minimum, the Establishment Clause was intended to prohibit the federal government from declaring and financially supporting a national religion, such as existed in many other countries at the time of the nation's founding" ("Introduction to the Establishment Clause"). There are some who believe that Thomas Jefferson and James Madison were suggesting the need to establish "a wall of separation" between church and state through the wording of this legislation. Although the "Religious Right" and many other conservative groups of people believe that prayer should be a mandatory requirement of the educational process, there are many opposing views that believe prayer should not be allowed in public school. There are numerous reasons for why these people feel the way they do. One reason is that prayer in school is unconstitutional. As stated above, the first amendment created a separation between church and state which prohibits prayer from being part of a public school program. Another reason why prayer should not be part of the school day is because it makes some children feel uncomfortable because they may not believe in any religion and not wish to participate in any form of prayer. On the other hand, with so many different religions, it would be uncomfortable and unfair to require the student body to adopt a singular approach to prayer which would conflict with the many ways people pray. A third reason is because public schools are created to educate, not to promote religion. If a student wishes to learn more about prayer and religion, they have the option to pursue theological studies at a religious school of their choice. It is because of these reasons, and more, as to why prayer should not be part of any public school curriculum.Just as freedom of speech gives each and every American the legal right to express their view by speaking out without fear of repercussion by the government, the First Amendment protects all Americans from being forced to pray in school even though the majority may feel it is the right thing to do. The Supreme Court went as far as issuing a statement in 1947 clearly calling out the separation of school and state basing their view on this amendment. They said students have the right to express their belief about religion in school and the schools could not force a specific religious belief on the students. As such, it is unconstitutional for students to say a specific prayer in school. The Daily Bible Study, located at www.keyway.ca, presents a chart where one can see an example of the various religions of the world, all of which are being practiced here in the United States. The religion that represents the majority...

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