Skip to comments.School District's Required 'Muslim' Course Attracting Attention
Posted on 01/16/2002 7:14:22 AM PST by truthandlife
While the United States continues to recover from the September 11 attacks in which thousands of Americans died, schoolchildren in California are being required to take a course that teaches them how to be a Muslim.
According to news reports last week, seventh-graders in some California school districts are now being forced to attend an intensive three-week course on Islam. As part of the course material, students are mandated to learn the tenets of the Muslim faith, study the important figures of the false religion, wear a robe, adopt a Muslim name, and even stage their own "jihad." Ironically, among the students are many who are not permitted to wear a cross or speak the name of Jesus while at school.
Pastor Austin Miles of Assist Ministries, who has written on the subject, says it is completely outrageous to indoctrinate seventh-graders into a false religion without even consulting their parents. He also is suspect of the silence from groups like the American Civil Liberties Union.
"Could you imagine if we were to teach about Martin Luther's theory [or] about Matthew, Mark, or John or [other] characters of the Bible?" Miles asks. "We'd never hear the last of it [from the ACLU] -- but they're sitting quietly because the ACLU is made up mainly of card-carrying communists and atheists."
Miles says this is no joking matter, calling it "serious indoctrination" that is being forced on schoolchildren, even while they are forbidden to wear a cross or speak the name of Jesus. "It's taught on campus, in school, [during] school hours ... [and] funded by taxpayers," he says, "so I think that's something that really needs to be examined."
According to Miles, news of the school district's course material is getting around. "The nation is shocked, the world is shocked -- I've been getting e-mails from all over the world since the story broke. It's being picked up everywhere," he says. "But we can no longer compromise our religious faith."
Miles says one school that is requiring the course is the Intermediate-Excelsior School of Byron, California. He says Principal Nancy Castro dismissed parents' concerns as frivolous and ignored them. Miles says school officials like Castro need to hear from enraged parents all over the country.
Byron Teacher Comments
A seventh-grade school teacher at Excelsior brought the issue to light last week. Elizabeth Christina Lemings is a devout Christian who, upon learning what was being taught -- with no restrictions from the ACLU or anyone else -- objected to the course and took a stand. Now, in an official statement released by Assist News Service, Lemings encourages people not to contact Castro or the Byron Union School District, but instead to let their voices be heard to the California Board of Education.
She explains the curriculum is selected at a state level, not a local level -- therefore, she says, state legislators as well as the state education board should be hearing any protests over the issue. Lemings also offers the following comment regarding the ACLU's lack of response.
"The ACLU has established the ground rules for change," she tells ANS. "If the Ten Commandments are to be removed from public buildings where they have been displayed for hundreds of years, then the Five Pillars of Faith of the Islam religion need to be removed from the public school history books."
The Byron school teacher also voices her concern that other states besides California may be using the same history book from which the course on Islam is being taught. The textbook is Across the Centuries, published by Houghton-Mifflin.
In the meantime, there appears to be a struggle going on for the control of the Muslim religion between moderate believers and radical terrorists. Human-rights advocate William Saunders feels the moderate elements have not done enough to take control of their faith, and that it is time for that group to rise up and take the reins of the religion. "Actions speak louder than words," Saunders says, "and in this case, we're talking about taking the act of denouncing actions against innocent people. Do they want to practice what they preach and actually contest for the future of Islam with these radicals?"
Saunders insists that unless Muslim leaders are willing to denounce the persecution, enslavement, and killing of Christians at the hands of Islamic governments, like that of Sudan, then they should not be listened to. "Anybody who can make an excuse for that kind of persecution and slavery is not somebody you should take seriously," he says. "So when you hear Muslims denouncing what's going on in Sudan, then listen to them further. Until then, I wouldn't waste my time."
According to Saunders, unless the moderate believers of Islam take control from the radical terrorists, the religion will continue the decline it has seen over the past 300 years.
Islam is the second largest religion in the world and is growing much fast than Christianity.
Muslim countries have suffered a significant comparative loss in wealth and levels of development as compared to Christian countries, but the decline started about 500 years ago, not 300. I can't think of anything happening in Islam that specifically started in 1700, unless perhaps the 2nd Siege of Vienna being defeated in 1689.
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