[saymaListserv] Fw: New School Prayer: Print this Out

Free Polazzo freepolazzo at mindspring.com
Tue May 16 10:26:16 JEST 2000

Dear "Seaside Guest House" person.   (Could F(f)riends please identify 
themselves when using the SAYMA list?)

When you say that prayer is needed in school, you are ignoring the fact 
that much harm has been done in the name of "my God".
By keeping prayer a private matter, the rights of ALL children are protected.

Friend Mike Mykel speaks my mind!

I, too, find this prayer off the mark.   That a child wrote it is not 
surprising.  That a Friend would find it wonderful is unsettling.
Some personal experience may explain my revulsion at the world view that 
this prayer espouses.

I was a child who went to an elementary school in NYC in the 50's and had 
to sit thru prayers that were for people who were not of my religion.   The 
public prayers, done at assemblies and in classes, helped to identify me as 
a non christian, as I did not bow my head in prayer as the christian kids 
had been taught to do in their churches and at their homes.

Many days, my brother and I were set upon by kids who thought we were being 
disrespectful of "their God".   We were identified as the descendants of 
the "Christ Killers".  We were harassed and beaten.   We were told to "get 
it right".   When told about the incidents, the adults were appropriately 
horrified, but did not stop the prayers or punish the boys involved.    One 
of the boys even told us he was sorry my mom hadn't been gassed in Germany 
with all the others.(I still remember his name: Carl)

Then there was the time the school assigned my brother and I parts in a 
school play.   As 5th graders we were excited about being part of a big 
deal event at the school.    What happened was that the school had put my 
mom in a situation where she had to tell us we had to drop out of the 
play.  That was because we were being asked to be shepherds in a manger 
scene for XMAS one year.  This put us in untenable position, at 10 years 
old, of having to explain why we couldn't be in the play.

This mom of mine who had been persecuted by the Nazis and the Fascists in 
Europe because of her religion, found that her sons were being persecuted 
here in the USA for not being part of the dominant culture.   It wasn't 
just the public schools, either.

It even ran over to the boy scouts, where we were told we needed to leave 
our troop and go to the "jewish troop" which was 4 miles further from our 
home than the one we were attending.   Boy scout knives were used to show 
us the seriousness of their "request".
Once again the "adults" were "horrified".   But nothing happened and we had 
to drop out because of the distances involved.

Hopefully, these true life stories will help the writer from the "Seaside 
Guest House" (no name was given in the SAYMA List message I received) to 
understand why the USA's Constitution places a "wall" between religion and 
the state.

Keeping prayer out of the public schools is not about dumping on 
God.   It's about protecting the children (and their families).    My 
understanding of God is that He/She would approve.

Shalom and Peace

Free Polazzo
Anneewakee Friends Worship Group
Douglasville, GA

 >You wrote:
>Now I sit me down in school
>Where praying is against the rule
>For this great nation under God
>Finds mention of Him very odd.
>If Scripture now the class recites,
>It violates the Bill of Rights.
>And anytime my head I bow
>Becomes a Federal matter now.
>Our hair can be purple, orange or green, That's no offense; it's a
>freedom scene. The law is specific, the law is precise. Prayers spoken
>aloud are a serious vice. For praying in a public hall Might offend
>someone with no faith at all. In silence alone we must meditate,
>God's name is prohibited by the state.
>We're allowed to cuss and dress like freaks, And pierce our noses,
>tongues and cheeks. They've outlawed guns, but FIRST the Bible. To quote
>the Good Book makes me liable.
>We can elect a pregnant Senior Queen,
>And the 'unwed daddy', our Senior King.
>It's "inappropriate" to teach right from wrong, We're taught that such
>"judgments" do not belong. We can get our condoms and birth controls,
>Study witchcraft, vampires and totem poles. But the Ten Commandments are
>not allowed, No word of God must reach this crowd. It's scary here I
>must confess,
>When chaos reigns the school's a mess.
>So, Lord, this silent plea I make:
>Should I be shot; My soul
>please take!
>This poem was posted on the Bagdad Public Bulletin board on 1/28/00. It
>is worthy of passing on.......God Bless whoever wrote it.

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