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Student Faces Town's Wrath in a Protest Against Prayer
NYTimes ^ | 01-27-12 | Abby Goodnough

Posted on 01/27/2012 9:39:09 AM PST by lilyramone

A federal judge ruled this month that the prayer's presence at Cranston High School West was unconstitutional, concluding that it violated the principle of government neutrality in religion. In the weeks since, residents have crowded school board meetings to demand an appeal, Jessica has received online threats and the police have escorted her at school, and Cranston, a dense city of 80,000 just south of Providence, has throbbed with raw emotion.

(Excerpt) Read more at mobile.nytimes.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; US: Rhode Island
KEYWORDS: arth; moralabsolutes

1 posted on 01/27/2012 9:39:13 AM PST by lilyramone
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To: lilyramone

Ahh...but her application to Harvard is going to be fast-tracked.


2 posted on 01/27/2012 9:44:33 AM PST by NativeNewYorker (Freepin' Jew Boy)
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To: lilyramone

>> “Our Heavenly Father, grant us each day the desire to do our best, to grow mentally and morally as well as physically, to be kind and helpful.” It goes on for a few more lines before concluding with “Amen.”

Well, that certainly is offensive enough for me. Off with their heads. /s


3 posted on 01/27/2012 9:46:22 AM PST by QBFimi (When gunpowder speaks, beasts listen.)
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To: lilyramone
When a Republican doesn't believe in God, they just don't go to church.

When a Democrat doesn't believe in God, they want to outlaw religion.

4 posted on 01/27/2012 9:47:27 AM PST by Joe the Pimpernel (Too many lawmakers, too many laws, too many lawyers.)
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To: lilyramone

This is the reason that as long as I have the ability to do it, my children will not see the inside of a public classroom.


5 posted on 01/27/2012 9:48:04 AM PST by kosciusko51 (Enough of "Who is John Galt?" Who is Patrick Henry?)
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To: lilyramone

What was the prayer? Story is worthless without it.


6 posted on 01/27/2012 9:55:26 AM PST by svcw (For the new year: you better toughen You up, if you are going to continue to be stupid.)
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To: lilyramone
A federal judge ruled this month that the prayer's presence at Cranston High School West was unconstitutional, concluding that it violated the principle of government neutrality in religion.

The oft-repeated falsehood about the separation of church and state is NOT a Constitutional provision. No such provision exists. The entire concept of separation of church and state stems from a letter written by Thomas Jefferson in which he discused the concept, but it was never memorialized in any official government document.

In addition, the SCOTUS has held that if school pryer is initiated by the students and not the faculty (except in religious private schools), there is no conflict with the so-called separation of church and state.

Jessica has received online threats and the police have escorted her at school, and Cranston, a dense city of 80,000 just south of Providence, has throbbed with raw emotion.

Really!!?? The whole town "THROBBED"!!??? Did we get a little dramatic in the telling of this story???

7 posted on 01/27/2012 9:56:27 AM PST by DustyMoment (Congress - Another name for white collar criminals!!)
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To: svcw
Google is your friend.

http://www.wpri.com/dpp/news/cranston-west-prayer-banner-text-detail

8 posted on 01/27/2012 10:01:10 AM PST by NativeNewYorker (Freepin' Jew Boy)
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To: lilyramone

It’s only a matter of time before atheists like Jessica Ahlquist demand:

1) the state not allow Christian Churches on public roads throughout this country because it creates the illusion that the state endorses religion.

2)Demand Churches remove their crosses and silence their bells so not to offend non-believers

3) Cities like St Louis and San Diego change their names because the word Saint endorses a religion.

4) The military remove all Christian Chaplains so not appear to endorse religion.

5) Public College/high school sport programs remove the ‘Hail Mary’ pass from their playbook.

6) Prayer in public will not be allowed anywhere because it might offend non-believers.

7) Christians wear a giant C on the left side of their chest so they can be easily identified and thus publicly shunned.

8) One will not be able to shop at a business owned by a Christian, in the name of FAIRNESS,because it gives the appearance of favoring a religious business over a secular one.

9) Biblical Christian(Lucifer and Judas are exempt) names will no longer be accepted on birth certificates so it does not create the appearance of the state endorsing religion.

10) Islam is exempt from All of the above rules in the name of diversity and as an expression of multiculturalism!

9)


9 posted on 01/27/2012 10:02:42 AM PST by Le Chien Rouge
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To: lilyramone

Two issues with all this...

First, there is NO Constitutional demand for ‘neutrality’ regarding religion. The Constituion prohibits the Federal government from establishing a state religion. Nothing more.

Second, there is NO Constitutional requirement or obligation for the Federal government to be involved in education. In fact, since it’s not among the enumerated powers, educational oversight is, by default, reserved to the States or the People.

It is well past time for us to reclaim our nation, and re-assert the Constituion, as written and legally amended, as the primary and LIMITING control on the Federal leviathan.


10 posted on 01/27/2012 10:03:22 AM PST by PubliusMM (RKBA; a matter of fact, not opinion. 01-20-2013: Change we can look forward to.)
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To: All

The prayer:
Our Heavenly Father, grant us each day the desire to do our best, to grow mentally and morally as well as physically, to be kind and helpful to our classmates and teachers, to be honest with ourselves as well as with others. Help us to be good sports and smile when we lose as well as when we win. Teach us the value of true friendship. Help us always to conduct ourselves so as to bring credit to Cranston High School West.
Amen.


11 posted on 01/27/2012 10:04:20 AM PST by svcw (For the new year: you better toughen You up, if you are going to continue to be stupid.)
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To: svcw

It does seem to be rather secular, the only people it might offend would be militant atheists. I don’t see any establishment of religion in it.


12 posted on 01/27/2012 10:14:07 AM PST by Menehune56 ("Let them hate so long as they fear" Oderint Dum Metuant), Lucius Accius, (170 BC - 86 BC))
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To: Menehune56

Imagine going down in history as the town A44hole.


13 posted on 01/27/2012 10:17:45 AM PST by massgopguy (I owe everything to George Bailey)
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To: massgopguy

So she stopped believing in God because her prayers for her sick mother were not answered fast enough?


14 posted on 01/27/2012 10:23:30 AM PST by massgopguy (I owe everything to George Bailey)
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To: Menehune56

Not surprising that an atheist would be offended, they are selfcentric and morally vapid.


15 posted on 01/27/2012 10:23:59 AM PST by svcw (For the new year: you better toughen You up, if you are going to continue to be stupid.)
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To: massgopguy

So she stopped believing in God because her prayers for her sick mother were not answered fast enough?


16 posted on 01/27/2012 10:24:38 AM PST by massgopguy (I owe everything to George Bailey)
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To: lilyramone

These judges have Liberal-diseased minds.

They incorrectly conclude that “nuetrality” means “antagonic opposition”.

There is nothing “nuetral” about atagonistic opposition.

True “nuetrality” (on the part of the government) - in terms of “separation of Church and state” - can mean only one thing - the government must be agnostic; and by that I mean it is neither a “believer” or a “non-believer”; it does not set itself as “the representative of” nor does it set itself as “the opponent of”; it neither prescribes nor proscribes; it neither demands a relisious sentiment of its chosing nor prohibits a religious sentiment the people have elected, agreed, allowed to be given.

The idiots judges do not mandate “separation of church and state”, they demand that only the church of secular humanism, the chosen church of the state (in the judge’s view), be heard.

In other words, if it were “neutral” then it would stay out of the choices “we the people make” in terms of our religious sentiments, even when we express them in a government owned facility in a public event.

“We the people” have all the Liberty and all the “freedom from oppression” we require to either appreciate the message, ignore the message, or remove ourselves from hearing the message, as we choose, without the U.S. Federal government telling us what we ought to have done, which from the idiot judges’ point of view, is we all should have, in the manner of extreme national unity of one mind, attacked the message. That is what their view of “neutrality” means.


17 posted on 01/27/2012 10:25:48 AM PST by Wuli
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To: massgopguy

Oh, so it’s not that she doesn’t believe in God, it is because He didn’t do what she commanded Him to do in her time. So she is just pissed that God isn’t a Genni.


18 posted on 01/27/2012 10:26:18 AM PST by svcw (For the new year: you better toughen You up, if you are going to continue to be stupid.)
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To: Wuli

Do they study the Declaration of Independence at this school?


19 posted on 01/27/2012 10:27:32 AM PST by massgopguy (I owe everything to George Bailey)
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To: lilyramone

I thought when they did this they wanted attention? I guess she thought they would love her for forcing her beliefs down the majorities throat?If it bothered you just don’t read it....


20 posted on 01/27/2012 10:28:57 AM PST by chris_bdba
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To: Menehune56

“Heavenly Father” is not “secular.” I think the word you’re looking for is “ecumenical.”

As to whether posting it prominently in an institution funded by tax dollars constitutes “establishment of religion...”

Lots of people get pissed off when gays shove their lifestyles in people’s faces, so surely such people can see the analogy here.


21 posted on 01/27/2012 10:34:28 AM PST by mvpel (Michael Pelletier)
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To: svcw
It sounds like this chick actually is a militant atheist. From the article:
"But Jessica Ahlquist is also an outspoken atheist..."
22 posted on 01/27/2012 10:36:25 AM PST by Menehune56 ("Let them hate so long as they fear" Oderint Dum Metuant), Lucius Accius, (170 BC - 86 BC))
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To: DustyMoment

“never memorialized in any official government document.”

It was in Stalin’s government.

We need to be able to say the word God or Creator in schools since it is where our Natural Rights come from and HAS TO BE TAUGHT to EVERY CHILD. It is written in our Founding Documents and God’s Standards are the basis of ALL our Rights. (supposed to be instead of barney frank’s standards of what are Rights).

This saying “God” never establishes any religion and the whole Marxist “separation” is only infiltration into our legal system which denies the Natural Rights of every person to express religious belief in the public square. We are supposed to be able to do that—it is the basis of the First Amendment Rights.


23 posted on 01/27/2012 11:50:05 AM PST by savagesusie (Right Reason According to Nature = Just Law.)
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To: Menehune56

She chose to through court action force her values upon the entire town. If the town chooses to ostracize her for her actions she has no one to blame but her own self. After all it appears that its all about her.

For my part I hope all the town businesses refuses service to her and her parents and they refuse to associate with her. You are known by the company you keep.


24 posted on 01/27/2012 11:50:36 AM PST by sarge83
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To: savagesusie
It was in Stalin’s government.

Ah, yes, Stalin - the paragon of freedom, liberty and good governance.

But, Stalin wasn't part of the conversation, we were talking about prayers in an American public school and the belief that there is a Constitutional constraint requiring the separation of church and state. Unless I fell asleep and missed something, Stalin wasn't any part of that.

25 posted on 01/27/2012 2:07:32 PM PST by DustyMoment (Congress - Another name for white collar criminals!!)
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To: lilyramone

“State Representative Peter G. Palumbo, a Democrat from Cranston, called Jessica “an evil little thing””

Man, things are interesting up there when a DEMOCRAT calls a spade a spade.


26 posted on 01/27/2012 7:55:11 PM PST by BobL (I don't care about his past - Newt will BRING THE FIGHT to Obama)
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To: kosciusko51

“This is the reason that as long as I have the ability to do it, my children will not see the inside of a public classroom.”

That is until it’s either paying tuition, or buying that plasma, or that yacht...or those granite counter tops. Admit it, you cannot resist the temptation of ‘free’ education.

Actually, I’m sure you can, since you’re committed to it (as I am too). It just may mean living in a smaller house, or, heaven forbid, an apartment, during those critical years when junior is being formed into a person.

Best wishes and you will NEVER regret it.


27 posted on 01/27/2012 7:58:54 PM PST by BobL (I don't care about his past - Newt will BRING THE FIGHT to Obama)
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To: BobL
That is until it’s either paying tuition, or buying that plasma, or that yacht...or those granite counter tops. Admit it, you cannot resist the temptation of ‘free’ education.

Ah, your barking up the wrong tree there. I pay now for my children's tuition to a private Christian school. As for my own education, I haven't been in a public school since the 10th grade.

28 posted on 01/28/2012 6:47:00 AM PST by kosciusko51 (Enough of "Who is John Galt?" Who is Patrick Henry?)
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To: DustyMoment

It is not in OUR Constitution—it was in Stanlin’s. That was my point that you miss.

We have freedom From government intrusion-—they shall make NO LAW... Read the text below-—it says Congress is prohibited from making “laws” that prohibit the free exercise of religion.

That means in the public square and public buildings especially. The Founders allowed government buildings for church services ALL the time and said prayers ALL the time and in ALL the schools—Christian ones, by the way. That shows their intent by the First Amendment—much more than an obscure letter misrepresented by Marxists.

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”


29 posted on 01/28/2012 9:21:34 AM PST by savagesusie (Right Reason According to Nature = Just LawD)
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To: Wuli

Good point. The judges have been hostile to our freedom of religion. And in doing so they are forcing Atheism which is also a “religion” by definition. We have NO freedom of religion when they are forcing theirs in the public square and schools. They shall make NO LAWS restricting our freedom of religion and since the 50’s they have been on a rampage-—since the founding of ACLU by the communist—forcing Atheism in the public square. Forcing their religion on our children.


30 posted on 01/28/2012 9:28:53 AM PST by savagesusie (Right Reason According to Nature = Just LawD)
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To: savagesusie

Ok, susie, you obviously didn’t get my point. The discussion had nothing to do with Stalin or the Soviet Union. It had everything to do with public schools in the United States and whether or not there is a provision in the US Constitution about the separation of church and state.

You brought Stalin in out of the blue and tried to sidetrack the discussion, as you continue to do. You don’t need to quote the Constitution to me, when I was in school they still taught it and, in turn, I have taught it to others. So, I think I have the Constitution, the Amendments and a lot of the coinciding malarkey down pretty well.

Now that we have exchanged our barbs, I think that we both agree what the Constitution says versus what the corrupt political elites have done.


31 posted on 01/28/2012 9:59:33 AM PST by DustyMoment (Congress - Another name for white collar criminals!!)
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To: DustyMoment

It is always necessary to know WHERE the ideas originate. Although that term WAS written in an obscure latter of Jefferson-—it was Stalin who employed that idea before it was forced into our jurisprudence.

It is necessary to understand ideas, who used them—and what was the consequence. We have seen the consequence of separation of Church and State-—in Stalin’s government.

It is the best example we have and should scare us to death-—and make us kick out the corrupt judges and our schools which look like they belong in the Soviet Union.

This discussion has everything to do with Atheism and Stalin and Marxist judges.


32 posted on 01/28/2012 10:22:48 AM PST by savagesusie (Right Reason According to Nature = Just LawD)
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To: savagesusie; 185JHP; 230FMJ; AKA Elena; APatientMan; Albion Wilde; Aleighanne; Alexander Rubin; ...
Moral Absolutes Ping!

Freepmail wagglebee to subscribe or unsubscribe from the moral absolutes ping list.

FreeRepublic moral absolutes keyword search
[ Add keyword moral absolutes to flag FR articles to this ping list ]

I agree with savagesusie. I also wonder how much her parents had to do with this. Sounds like many in the town are seriously angry. Good.

33 posted on 01/28/2012 2:38:05 PM PST by little jeremiah (We will have to go through hell to get out of hell)
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>> was unconstitutional, concluding that it violated the principle of government neutrality in religion.

That’s not neutrality, idiot.


34 posted on 01/28/2012 2:40:52 PM PST by Gene Eric (C'mon, Virginia -- are you with us or against us?!)
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To: lilyramone
**All** government owned and run K-12 schools are a First Amendment and freedom of conscience abomination! All of them!

It is impossible to have a religiously neutral education.

Allowing school prayer is not religiously neutral for all those **forced** to be subjected to it.

Disallowing school prayer is not religiously neutral for all those who are forbidden to freely exercise their religion.

THERE IS NOT SOLUTION for this conflict in government owned and run schools!

Solution: Begin the process of privatizing all K-12 education. What is needed is complete separation of school and state!

35 posted on 01/28/2012 4:06:02 PM PST by wintertime (I am a Constitutional Restorationist!!! Yes!)
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To: Wuli
“We the people” have all the Liberty and all the “freedom from oppression” we require to either appreciate the message, ignore the message, or remove ourselves from hearing the message, as we choose,

Children are in godless government socialist-entitlement schools under state **compulsion**! They are not free to reject or accept the message, or remove themselves.

Government schooling never was, never has been, is not now, or every will be religiously neutral. Why? Because a religiously neutral education is impossible!

At the moment the religion of godless secular humanism is the religion being established by all government K-12 schools in this nation. I anyone knows of an exception please send a link.

36 posted on 01/28/2012 4:15:55 PM PST by wintertime (I am a Constitutional Restorationist!!! Yes!)
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To: lilyramone; 2Jedismom; 6amgelsmama; AAABEST; aberaussie; AccountantMom; Aggie Mama; agrace; ...

ANOTHER REASON TO HOMESCHOOL

This ping list is for the “other” articles of interest to homeschoolers about education and public school. This can occasionally be a fairly high volume list. Articles pinged to the Another Reason to Homeschool List will be given the keyword of ARTH. (If I remember. If I forget, please feel free to add it yourself)

The main Homeschool Ping List handles the homeschool-specific articles. I hold both the Homeschool Ping List and the Another Reason to Homeschool Ping list. Please freepmail me to let me know if you would like to be added to or removed from either list, or both.

37 posted on 01/28/2012 5:14:20 PM PST by metmom (For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore & do not submit again to a yoke of slavery)
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To: lilyramone

She has received threats? Prove who they came from or if they are even real. We know their tactic is to sully us with fabricated, nameless “attacks”. If they cannot prove that these so called attacks actually came from the opposition then they need to stop reporting this as fact.


38 posted on 01/28/2012 8:57:15 PM PST by Bellflower (The LORD is Holy, separated from all sin, perfect, righteous, high and lifted up.)
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To: savagesusie
. . . it was Stalin who employed that idea before it was forced into our jurisprudence.

It is necessary to understand ideas, who used them—and what was the consequence. We have seen the consequence of separation of Church and State-—in Stalin’s government.


Let me stop you here. I agree in principle with what you are saying and, had you said that initially, we might not have gone any further with this discussion. But, again, the discussion had nothing to do with Stalin and everything to do with Americn public schools and the issue of separation of church and state.

We can take this into a broader arena, if we choose, by expanding the discussion into the degradation of our public schools coinciding with the rise in influence of the teachers unions but, again, that takes the discussion well beyond the original scope.

Understand that I am not saying you are wrong, I disagree with the introduction of something that wasn't part of the original discussion. Philosophically, from a historical perspective, we can look at the USSR and see what is ahead of us if we fail to regain control of a (currently) out-of-control government. This is part and parcel of what Ayn Rand tried to warn us about in her various books. Alas Shrugged is so fundamental to the discussion at large because she looked 50 years into the future and saw where America was going. Unfortunately, we didn't get the message because we failed to understand her warning and now, we have bcome the America she envisioned in Atlas Shrugged. So, who IS John Galt?

It is the best example we have and should scare us to death-—and make us kick out the corrupt judges and our schools which look like they belong in the Soviet Union.

I couldn't agree more. Today, I am not sure that we haven't allowed our governmnt to stray so far that we can simply pull it back from outrageous liberalism by just expressing our voice at the ballot box. These past 3+ years have taught us nothing if we have failed to see that the people we hire to represent our wishes to the federal government have become so drunk with power that it has made them selectively deaf to the majority. Too many people are suckling at the government's teat and are unwilling to be weaned. If politicians are anything, they are political cowards unwilling to take a stand on anything and stick to it if it goes against the wishes of what my dad used to call "the squeaky wheel". Their re-election is more important to them than the future of America. As much as I hate the idea, we may have no choice in the foresseable future but to hit ctrl+alt+del on the government and reset everything back to what the Founding Fathers envisioned.

America, today, is NOT the land of freedom and opportunity they envisioned 200+ years ago. Corrupt politicians and a corrupt judicial system have perverted and trampled the Constitution to the extent that it is unrecognizable. We are a nation whose political elites pass laws, regulations and ordinances to make it appear that they are doing something to justify their jobs and bloated salaries and perks. In truth, if all those laws could be enforced, we would be the most oppressed people on earth.

Let me leave you with this thought: Today, we have well in excess of 20,000 gun laws actively on the books. . . . . . and NONE of them will prevent the next gun crime. The laws our political elites create are written to control the law-abiding people, NOT the criminals.

39 posted on 01/29/2012 10:57:09 AM PST by DustyMoment (Congress - Another name for white collar criminals!!)
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To: DustyMoment

I love your post and agree with everything you expressed so eloquently, except for the part about Stalin. We disagree on that. But I concede that sometimes I just assume people are on the same wavelength, when I shouldn’t, but then that is why this is a discussion board. Thanks for your post!


40 posted on 01/29/2012 11:50:03 AM PST by savagesusie (Right Reason According to Nature = Just LawD)
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To: savagesusie

Thank you, susie. I enjoyed this discussion and appreciate your comments and your dogged dedication to your beliefs. Don’t let anyone dissuade you from them, not even me!!

The down side of the Internet is that we can’t see another person’s face or hear the inflection in their voice in discussions like these. IMO, that’s what causes so many fights here at FR when folks are just trying to have a discussion.

Again, thanks a lot. We DID have a good discusion and I look forward to more with you!

FRegards,
Dusty


41 posted on 01/29/2012 12:30:10 PM PST by DustyMoment (Congress - Another name for white collar criminals!!)
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To: metmom; wintertime; Le Chien Rouge
In reality, it was not Jessica Alhquist who originated the complaint, but the parent of another student who remains anonymous. Alhquist later went to the ACLU and sided with the original plaintiff, but she didn't get this set in motion. I think that the person who got this started whole thing should be outed.
42 posted on 01/29/2012 3:53:58 PM PST by Clintonfatigued (A chameleon belongs in a pet store, not the White House)
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