Friday, September 19, 2014

Censoring Christians: The "New Freedom"

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The school district superintendent claimed she was kicking out the Christians because, "We value inclusivity and diversity on our campus, and all our events and activities are going to adhere to our mission."

Were the Christians trying to take over the school?

Actually the Christian company had agreed to donate---not sell---product to the booster club which would have raised $1,600 for the school.

Standing in stark contrast to what our Founders intended, this is the latest episode of public censorship of Christianity, under the guise of "freedom."

Our Founders recognized that our rights and freedoms come from God. Their documents---the Declaration and Constitution, reflect their firm belief that our rights and freedoms are a gift from God and are to be "protected" by government, not censored by government agencies.

Nowhere is this new form of "freedom" more evident than in the government run public school class room of your child or grandchild.

Can censorship of Christianity be reversed in a country founded upon its principles, or must we simply learn to live with it and create a parallel life?

America's public institutions have become the instrument of choice to censor religious freedom and religious expression, none more fertile than the government run public school class room.

Rather than celebrating the source of our freedoms, secular progressives have seized control of education using the school system to censor religious expression, while celebrating the censorship by calling it freedom of diversity and inclusiveness.

I have been writing about these incidences and will continue to do so.

Remember the high school salutatorian who had his speech edited by school administration three times because he wanted to thank God for His blessings? Or the 8 year old in Detroit who suffers from autism and found reading his Bible during his free time greatly helped him get through his day? School authorities told his parents,  "No Bibles on campus." They said, "Bibles are for church, not school."

I can only imagine the march toward the "New Freedom" that will begin as we approach the Christmas season.

After donating over $21,000 to this same school district, Chick-fil-A has been banned from donating---not selling, hundreds of meals to the booster club at Ventura High School in Southern California.

Ventura principal Val Wyatt explained why she killed the Chick-fil-A donation: "With their political stance on gay rights and because students of Ventura High School and their parents would be at the event, I didn't want them on campus," she told the Ventura County Star.

The donated meals would have raised $1,600 for school programs.

Public education is never so short on money they can't pass up a donation that might highlight Christian virtue. Yet they cave to every atheist threat for fear of a law suit they cannot afford?

And believing in the biblical model of marriage---one man and one woman, is not a political stance, it is a moral one, nor is it an anti-gay stance. It is a pro-God, pro-marriage stance.

God's model for marriage predates all organized societies, political philosophies and cultural norms. It has been the norm since Creation and has been affirmed by every successful society in the history of the world...until now.

Trudy Tuttle Ariaga, school district superintendent, backed the decision.

She told CBS News Los Angeles, "We value inclusivity and diversity on our campus, and all our events and activities are going to adhere to our mission."

Their mission? I thought the mission of public education was to educate, not socially indoctrinate.

The mission she defines is neither inclusive nor diverse.

Homosexual advocacy groups are woven throughout the fabric of the school district in both social activities and curriculum, as is abortion advocacy.

If her district was truly inclusive, they would stop censoring Christian expression or even the presence of a Christian organization that has donated over $21,000 to that school district.

And the Ventura School District administration is dishonest.

The Cathy family, who own the very successful Chick-fil-A chain, are not "anti-gay." They have publicly said they are pro-God and pro-biblical marriage.

And for professing to believe that most basic principle, they are banished for fear the students and their parents might be exposed to such things.

After significant backlash from the community, Wyatt has now begun to walk back and revise her story a bit, however, she is not backing away from protecting students and parents from exposure to generous people who believe in natural biblical marriage.

Rather, she is now saying she was actually protecting Ventura High from being "a marketplace for all kinds of vendors to come to the campus and reap profit."

Chick-fil-A was donating, not selling.

It has been said, "No good deed goes unpunished."

It is also said that goodness begets goodness.

The Cathy family's philanthropy is well known and documented. They are very generous people. And their acts of kindness cause others to do so as well.

Monday of this week, a man named John drove up to the window at the Chick-fil-A in Abilene, Texas and, after paying for his order, gave the Chick-fil-A employee $1,000---10, $100 bills. He asked the employee to use all the thousand dollars to pay for the customers who would follow him to the drive through window. You can read the story in the local news.

Is this what public education is protecting its students and their families from?

These are the principles government run education is censoring, while they attempt to normalize homosexual behavior and call an abortion a "pregnancy interruption."

Can we reverse this anti-Christian bias and censorship in public schools---schools we as taxpayers fund?

Yes, but it will take a sustained effort, not just a phone call and a burst of disapproval after reading these kinds of stories, then a return to business as usual. These kinds of events happen every day across America in our class rooms and in our school districts and in our communities.

A growing number of Christians are removing their children from public schools. However, some are not able to do so.

Here are some suggestions as to how you may make a difference in your community.

  • Be vigilant and informed. Pay attention and never fail to address your concerns in an informed and respectful, but firm way.
  • Become formally involved in your school or school district. Volunteer. Or consider running for a local position, including the school board.
  • Be aware of special student led Christian events that may recognize the Bible or a particular Christian virtue or action. Prayer at the poll day, etc. Encourage your child and others to participate.

Example: October 16 is "Bring Your Bible To School" day. Kids across the country will be bringing their Bibles to school that day. Find out in advance if there are others in your school who plan to participate---get your kid connected to them, there's strength in numbers for kids. Encourage your youth pastor to help organize the kids in your church.

  • If an act of censorship occurs, don't be fearful of contacting one of the several Christian law firms who represent kids and families in these kinds of circumstances.
  • And most importantly, take responsibility for your child's education. Ultimately you, not government schools, or Christian schools for that matter, are responsible for your child.

Deuteronomy 11:18,19,20 and Deut. 6:7 give specific instruction regarding the education of your child.

Jesus Himself affirms the importance of properly educating your child.

"So it is not the will of My Father who is in Heaven that one of these little ones should perish" (Matthew 18:14).

If we are to reverse the censorship and anti-Christian trends in our schools and our culture, it must begin with you...and me.

Be Informed. Be Vigilant. Be Discerning. Be Pro-Active. Be Confident. Be Prayerful. Be Blessed.