When our Founding Fathers came to the States over from England, one of main issues was that over in England, religion was forced upon the people and individual choices as to what to believe weren’t an option. When our countries Founding Fathers wrote the constitution, they were very careful about granting the freedom of separation of church and state. Many Americans feel that having prayer in school would indeed violate that part of our constitution. Many people argue that public schools are meant for educational purposes only, not for proselytizing. Schools are a part of the public where as religion is something personal and... ... middle of paper ... ...aintain and teach values and morals.
However, American citizens have been debating for many years, whether organized prayer should be an option or obligation in public schools. Some people believe that organized prayer or religious classes would be a benefit to young people and should be allowed in American public schools. Others: however, see this as an affront to the First Amendment and believe that religion does not belong in the classroom, and should never be permitted under any circumstances. Supporters of organized prayer believe the school day should not just revolve around training the student’s mind academically, but also spiritually. “Far more than the mere teaching of facts, true education concerns itself with establishing beliefs and values” (Salter 176).
Prayer had a great impact on school students but many parents had divided opinions on what their religion was. The disadvantages to prayer in public schools were: parents felt that their freedom to make decisions for their children was being prohibited, parents had different religious beliefs and didn’t want their children to have separate beliefs, and last parents felt as though biblical religion was being forced on their children. Parents often felt that if they were living in America then they were free to make their own decisions concerning religion. Many Americans had different religious beliefs and didn’t want their children being taught differently from what was being taught at home. As the feuds became greater, laws were produced which restricted prayer in schools.
However, children could be exempt from prayer if their parents chose to not allow it. The Schempp family, whose kids went to school in the township, followed Unitarianism, and did disagree with some of the ideas in the Bible. However, they did not want their children to miss prayer because they would miss the important announcements that followed. They brought the case to a state court, and the court ruled that prayer in fact did violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. Next, they appealed to the Supreme Court.
Prayer among public schools has been an issue throughout the United States since the 1960’s. Public prayer can affect a human’s opinion on the government, their surroundings, and their morals. Some would say allowing public prayer is is giving the government too much power, while in reality, prayer is a part of a human’s life that keeps him or her stable. Even though government interference is frowned upon, prayer should be mandated because the founding fathers built America on God, and the moral values of today’s young people have declined. Few issues in american public life bring about more controversy than religion in public education; something that never truly dies but ends up being disputed in waves (Perksy 1).
There is not enough emphasis on the biblical roots of our country. Religious knowledge is also necessary to teach about democracy. Schools are already allowed to teach democracy, how can anyone expect students to see everyone’s opinions if they didn’t learn all about the other religions and sides a person can be coming from? Experts also say that for american government to be taught and fully understood, then students need to fully know that it’s roots were religion. While religion is a very sensitive topic, other subjects such as politics and government are too, and yet those subjects are still discussed and taught in schools without a problem.
While Gaylor delivers a concise, well organized argument, there is little trace of hard evidence to back up some her points. Prayer in schools is a hard subject to change one's opinion on. Proponents of school prayer not only see the practice as necessary, but vital to the well being of their life after death. Telling one to step aside when it comes to his beliefs on what is one of the most important things in his life requires a careful choice of words and a general respect for his religion. This can be hard to communicate when Gaylor is the author of books such as No Gods--No Masters and is a well known atheist.
As a citizen of the United States of America, I have the right to have freedom of religion. I feel like if I cannot pray at school, then I am having my rights taken away. Kramer states “But public prayer, whether in school or the United States Senate, is not remotely the same as a church service presided over by a clergyman or clergywoman trained in the teachings of a specific faith.”(Prayer Does Not Violate) This goes to show that no, there should not be an entire church service, but a simple daily prayer would do just fine. A simple thank you to God for the wonderful day He has created, I believe, would do no harm to anyone. All different types of religion could be recognized at the same time in a sequence.
Public schools must to be very careful to neither discriminate for nor against any single religion, and people often incorrectly perceive the schools' attitudes toward religion. The non-discrimination requirement may seem wrong to many, but when religion has a home in public schools, it singles out the students who disagree with the theology being taught. Prior to the Supreme Court's decisions against school prayer, it was standard practice to put the students who didn't agree with the theology being taught in places of detention during Bible readings and prayers. One argument in favor of the practice of school-organized prayer draws its basis from the belief that students must be taught morals in school, and that morals... ... middle of paper ... ...t Congress is not allowed to make any law which involves the establishment of religion or interferes with the right of the citizens of this country to freely practice the religion of their choice. There is no question of ambiguity or vague wording in the First Amendment.
Prayer in Public Schools An issue that has been constantly debated for years is whether voluntary prayer in public schools should be permitted. A student should be allowed to pray voluntarily at the beginning of each school day based on many reasons. Prayer based on moral beliefs reinforce good citizenship as defined by our forefathers. A daily reminder of a need for the belief of good over evil is a necessary part of this society. Daily voluntary school prayer should be re-instated in public schools due to three reasons, the historical basis of the beginning of the United States government, the serious moral decline since prayer has been outlawed, and the government infringement on the constitutional guarantee of individual freedom of personal beliefs.