Two articles out of the fundie state of Texas caught my attention today. Both demonstrate how religion creeps into our secular schools and why it is important to speak up to protect our children from unwanted religious indoctrination.
In Carrollton, Texas, David Wallace Croft (Blog) is fighting to protect his children from religion at Rosemead Elementary school. He makes frequent visits and files complaints when needed to make sure his children receive a secular education.
He complained about Boy Scout rallies held during school, fliers sent home about Good News Bible Club meetings and the inclusion of "Silent Night" and a Hanukkah song in holiday concerts.
The rallies and fliers stopped, and in some cases the songs were removed or altered, angering other parents.
Mr. Croft, 39, often stopped by the campus looking for violations. He took photos as evidence of "In God We Trust" posters hanging on the wall and complained about a teacher wearing an Abilene Christian University shirt.
Wallace is an Atheist, an "optihumanist" (I don't have any idea what that is), and a fellow libertarian. His biggest issue is the moment of silence each child must observe after the pledge of allegiance to the US Flag, and the Texas State Flag. The moment of silence was added in 2003. Wallace faces an uphill battle, the law was carefully crafted to avoid being an endorsement of prayer.
I am sure Croft is aware of the latest fundie attack on our secular schools. The Texas State pledge of allegiance was modified to include the words "One state under God" by the state legislature. State Rep. Debbie Riddle sponsored the bill.
"Personally, I felt like the Texas pledge had a big old hole in it, and it occurred to me, 'You know what? We need to fix that,' " said Riddle, R-Tomball. "Our Texas pledge is perfectly OK like it is with the exception of acknowledging that just as we are one nation under God, we are one state under God as well."
Let's give this a little sniff test. First you say "under God" to the US Flag, and then you say "under God" to the state flag, and then you take a moment of silence to pray. It's the triple whammy for Christians. Who do they think they are fooling?
Of course, Texas protects atheist children. All they need do is bring a note from home objecting to the pledge. They can opt out, which is the same as placing a big Atheist "A" on their foreheads. Nothing to fear here.
I like California much better thank you.