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Essay/Term paper: School prayer

Essay, term paper, research paper:  Education

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School Prayer By Danielle Clark Block 1 Speech 105 I. Intro- Contrary to the claims, students have the Constitutional right to pray in school, either individually or in informal groups so long as the prayer is not organized by the school. But if the students only knew what they were really doing by praying in school. II. First of all they are going against the Bible. As to quote, Matthew 6:5-6: "And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray..." So as you can see those who pray in places such as the cafeteria, middle of the hall or things of that nature is actually going against the bible. Now I am not saying that a person should not pray in schools, but they should do it just as the Bible says in a personal place. If a student can't find a personal place, and have an undesirable need to pray, they need to not make a big deal out of it. Praying as put in the Bible is a personal experience between that person and God. Not an event to be proclaimed up and down the hallway. III. Another problem there is with praying in schools is the fact that there are some students who don't believe in God. The purpose of a democracy is to have the majority decide but yet always respect the rights of the minority. Some administrators, teachers, parents, and most importantly, kids, just feel uncomfortable when it comes to religion. Several factors could be attributed to this problem, from too many religions and religious theories to religious pressure to lack thereof. But whatever the reason some people feel offended by seeing these students pray. They think that their rights are being infringed upon. Well in example, if a shirt some student is wearing offends a person they tell someone about being offended. Someone else is also offended and so they tell someone. These 2 people influenced by what they have heard tell more people. This chain reaction continues until that kind of shirt is not allowed in schools, in example Marilynn Manson shirts. The minority there is the students wanting to wear the shirts; the majority is the people offended by it. The majority spoke and the minority is told to fallow. But now it is the minority being offended no one cares to do anything about it. IV. The last problem I have are the advocates of school prayer say that without it there is moral decline, blaming the absence of school prayer for everything from low SAT scores to teenage pregnancy. But it just won't work. In fact, legislated school prayer would make things worse. For a school to require students to recite, for example, a Christian prayer would give Christianity a special status, implying that other religions are somehow inferior. One religion would be pitted against another, conflicts would arise, and intolerance would grow. The only palatable compromise in a directed public school prayer would be a watered-down prayer that would be meaningless to the deeply religious and an infringement on those who follow no religion. Some of our senators are trying to pass an amendment in have school prayer required. But the First Amendment begins "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." If we were to have this school wide required prayer we would be in essance establishing a religion. And even though what they are trying to pass is a constitutional amendment it goes against on of the main things our forefathers came here for. The First Amendment is one of the finest laws man has ever written. For over two hundred years, it continues to mean exactly what it was originally intended to mean: Religion and other fundamental rights should remain beyond the reach of majorities and governments, and certainly not subjected to the political whims of Congress. Biblyography "FAQ." Prayer in Schools. http://www.atheists.org/schoolhouse/faqs.prayer.html. Downloaded December 16, 1999 "Maryland teen walks out of Graduation over Prayer." Prayer in schools. http://www.freedomforum.org/religion/1999/5/28mdgradprayer.asp Downloaded December 16, 1999 "Smudge Report." Bible verse. http://www.smudgereport.com/longstories/prayer.html Downloaded December 16, 1999 "Bible Belivers should oppose school prayer." School Prayer. http://users.cnmnetwork.com/lotl2k/prayer.html Downloaded December 16, 1999 "The Bible and Public Prayer." Public Prayer. http://www.religioustolerance.org/prayer.htm. Downloaded December 16, 1999  

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