"Season's Greetings!" Maryland county School Board finally scrubs Christian, Jewish holidays from official calendar. Why? Because...

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    Nov 12, 2014 7:40 PM GMT
    It's good that they finally got to the right action after over three decades, but dang, Montgomery County!

    Does it have to take Muslims, Satanists, Rastafarians and/or whatever followers of a belief set you're NOT wild about to make the fallacy of publicly-funded religious observances crystal clear every single time?

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/christmas-stricken-from-school-calendar-after-muslims-ask-for-equal-treatment/2014/11/11/f1b789a6-6931-11e4-a31c-77759fc1eacc_story.html

    Washington PostChristmas and Easter have been stricken from next year’s school calendar in Montgomery County. So have Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah.

    Montgomery’s Board of Education voted 7 to 1 Tuesday to eliminate references to all religious holidays on the published calendar for 2015-2016, a decision that followed a request from Muslim community leaders to give equal billing to the Muslim holy day of Eid al-Adha.

    In practical terms, Montgomery schools will still be closed for the Christian and Jewish holidays, as in previous years, and students will still get the same days off, as planned...

    The main and most noticeable difference will be that the published calendar will not mention any religious holidays by name.

    Muslim community leaders have been asking Montgomery school officials for years to close schools for at least one of the two major Muslim holidays.

    It is unclear how many Muslim students attend Montgomery schools, but in 2013, Muslim community leaders urged Muslim families and their supporters to keep students home for Eid ­al-Adha, hoping that the number of absentees would be persuasive as they made their case for a school closing. Montgomery school officials reported that absences for that day — 5.6 percent of students and 5 percent of teachers — were only somewhat higher than a comparable day the previous week.

    Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays.

    But Tuesday’s outcome was not at all what Muslim leaders intended.


    Here's the part I just love: the County was previously angling to dump only the Jewish observances rather than acknowledge the Muslim holiday that falls on the same day as Yom Kippur... but still tried to wiggle a way into keeping the "Christmas break" thing going. The religious discrimination was becoming way too obvious even for them, I suppose.

    Washington PostSuperintendent Joshua P. Starr presented the board with three options to resolve the question Tuesday, and a majority of members supported his recommended proposal to do away with the names of both the Muslim and the Jewish holidays on the calendar. But amending the proposal, the board opted to ditch references to Christmas and Easter, too.


    Still, watch the Muslim-faith citizens there get media-bashed for waging some kind of "WAR ON CHRISTMAS!" It's that time of year, anyway. It's happening on the usual-suspect message boards already.

    Shoulda been listening to the ACLU all along, Montgomery County!
  • FRE0

    Posts: 4862

    Nov 13, 2014 1:34 AM GMT
    That is a somewhat difficult subject. No one should be treated as inferior because of his or her religion regardless of what it is, or lack thereof. On the other hand, it is not good to ignore the religious holidays of people. Perhaps a way could be found to use religious holidays as an opportunity to learn about the religions of other people.
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    Nov 13, 2014 1:38 AM GMT
    Of course they should give Muslims their requested day(s) off. That way the schools are emptier when the bombing(s) occur. icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Nov 13, 2014 3:41 AM GMT
    I also think we can't under estimate the power of culture as well. So many of these holidays, Easter and Christmas, are more about spending time with family and relaxing then about the religious celebrations they were inspired from. Most children think of the Easter Bunny, before they think of man hanging on a cross.

    I think we should be cautious that we don't throw away cultural traditions in the name of cleansing out religion from the public way of life. As most of our ancestors held religious beliefs when founding and building our countries, I think these days hold a significant connection to our past.

    Instead we should embrace what they've become to us, and value them for the positive things that they contribute to our societies: bringing family and friends together, a time to think of others and give instead of focusing on our own consumption, time to rest and relax from the rush of life.
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    Nov 13, 2014 4:49 AM GMT
    Well, now that secular humanism is a religion I think we get every other Wednesdays off, unless Tuesdays work better for you.
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Nov 13, 2014 4:55 AM GMT
    No religious holy days off for any one. If you want to a holiday, like they did with Martin Luther King day, that happens to fall during the same time frame, then go through the process of getting it approved.
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    Nov 13, 2014 5:14 AM GMT
    This is a really bad idea. Religious holidays are very important to one's culture. I'm not deeply religious but Christmas and Easter are very important to me and my family. Therefore I find this decision very offensive.

    The reason behind this decision is also very troubling. I really felt that Muslim had a solid argument. They should be allowed to have their religious holidays off. It's only fair.
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    Nov 13, 2014 5:28 AM GMT
    They can do floating holidays with students declaring in advance which ones they want so teachers can schedule accordingly. And New Years should also be a random holiday. After all, by default, Anno Domini, it's currently Christian, right?
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    Nov 13, 2014 9:15 AM GMT
    dayumm said...

    Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays.

    ...


    Much ado about nothing. They were already being given excused absences for their fuckin' holidays they were just stirring trouble to stir trouble.

    Go to Saudi Arabia and ask for a Christian holiday off. You just might get your fuckin' head off.
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    Nov 13, 2014 1:37 PM GMT
    I think we should all get everyone's holidays off. It'd be great for inter-communal relations!
    We work to hard. Taking more time to relax and have a good time with friends and family is good for all of us.
    When I lived in Malawi everyone got all Muslim and Christian holidays off. They were national holidays for everyone. No Muslims complained of having a 4 day weekend for easter and no Christians bitched about having 2 days off for Eid. It worked out great for everyone.
  • a303guy

    Posts: 829

    Nov 13, 2014 8:36 PM GMT
    AMoonHawk saidNo religious holy days off for any one. If you want to a holiday, like they did with Martin Luther King day, that happens to fall during the same time frame, then go through the process of getting it approved.


    This is where it will be going, over time. If you want religious days off, go to a religion-based private school of your choice.

    If you are going to a state/city run school, religious days off are going the way of the dodo, because: separation of church and state.

    Back to basics.
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    Nov 13, 2014 9:08 PM GMT
    ALRboy saidThis is a really bad idea. Religious holidays are very important to one's culture. I'm not deeply religious but Christmas and Easter are very important to me and my family. Therefore I find this decision very offensive.

    The reason behind this decision is also very troubling. I really felt that Muslim had a solid argument. They should be allowed to have their religious holidays off. It's only fair.


    You misread it. They (Muslims, Christians, Jews) had them off, and will continue to. The problem is (was) what the taxpayer-funded public school board chose to call them, leaving the door open for persons of faith to quibble needlessly over them.
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    Nov 13, 2014 9:12 PM GMT
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said...

    Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays.

    ...


    Much ado about nothing. They were already being given excused absences for their fuckin' holidays they were just stirring trouble to stir trouble.

    Go to Saudi Arabia and ask for a Christian holiday off. You just might get your fuckin' head off.


    That's just it, though. In this country, there should never have been any "trouble" to stir.
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    Nov 13, 2014 9:17 PM GMT
    Wyndahoi saidI think we should all get everyone's holidays off. It'd be great for inter-communal relations!
    We work to hard. Taking more time to relax and have a good time with friends and family is good for all of us.
    When I lived in Malawi everyone got all Muslim and Christian holidays off. They were national holidays for everyone. No Muslims complained of having a 4 day weekend for easter and no Christians bitched about having 2 days off for Eid. It worked out great for everyone.


    With all the religions and sects and philosophical ideologies people subscribe to we would be left with approximately 14(not necessarily consecutive) days of work per year.

    How about one day in which you are allowed to celebrate, in any way, shape, or form you choose, whatever ridiculous notion you decide to honor. The remaining legal holidays will consist of two days off in each of the four seasons and will not have any religious significance attached to them.

    It's not just religious holidays that are offensive to some. I imagine Native Americans are not all that thrilled with Columbus Day or Thanksgiving Day. Why should they be subject to celebrating what is essentially honoring the ending of their civilizations. These two holidays should be scraped all together. Oh wait! but I'm sure the revenue their casinos take in on holidays makes up for the shabby treated and genocide. Money talks and bullshit walks.
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    Nov 13, 2014 9:26 PM GMT
    dayumm said
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said...

    Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays.

    ...


    Much ado about nothing. They were already being given excused absences for their fuckin' holidays they were just stirring trouble to stir trouble.

    Go to Saudi Arabia and ask for a Christian holiday off. You just might get your fuckin' head off.


    That's just it, though. In this country, there should never have been any "trouble" to stir.


    There WAS no trouble to stir! Muslims were allowed excused absences. They were getting the best of both worlds: both Christian AND Muslin holidays. If anyone had a gripe it was the Christians, Jews, and secularist who weren't getting excused absences for the Muslim holidays!

    And that missing ONE day left students behind canard! What a crock of shit. If little Mohammad and Fatima are that stupid maybe mom and dad should spring for a tutor or help them catch up. What do they do when Mohammad and Fatima are sick for a day? Pleeeeeeze you don't need the nose of a bloodhound to smell a pile of crap.
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    Nov 13, 2014 9:42 PM GMT
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said...

    Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays.

    ...


    Much ado about nothing. They were already being given excused absences for their fuckin' holidays they were just stirring trouble to stir trouble.

    Go to Saudi Arabia and ask for a Christian holiday off. You just might get your fuckin' head off.


    That's just it, though. In this country, there should never have been any "trouble" to stir.


    There WAS no trouble to stir! Muslims were allowed excused absences. They were getting the best of both worlds: both Christian AND Muslin holidays. If anyone had a gripe it was the Christians, Jews, and secularist who weren't getting excused absences for the Muslim holidays!

    And that missing ONE day left students behind canard! What a crock of shit. If little Mohammad and Fatima are that stupid maybe mom and dad should spring for a tutor or help them catch up. What do they do when Mohammad and Fatima are sick for a day? Pleeeeeeze you don't need the nose of a bloodhound to smell a pile of crap.


    There are (and were) NO Muslim holidays observed on the public school systems' calendar (thereby, no absences for the non-Muslims to "excuse" themselves from). And unless there are Christian students who are peeved they weren't excused from St. Patty's or St. Valentine's, etc., it's a bit of a false comparison.

    Once the Muslims asked to include one or two on a calendar that had openly observed (two) other religions' for decades... they became the "trouble" stirrers, when the real "trouble" began long ago, a "trouble" that no one saw fit to correct on a Constitutional basis. Why do what's right, when it's so much more fun to wait for a religious tug-o-war?
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    Nov 13, 2014 9:58 PM GMT
    dayumm said
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said...

    Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays.

    ...


    Much ado about nothing. They were already being given excused absences for their fuckin' holidays they were just stirring trouble to stir trouble.

    Go to Saudi Arabia and ask for a Christian holiday off. You just might get your fuckin' head off.


    That's just it, though. In this country, there should never have been any "trouble" to stir.


    There WAS no trouble to stir! Muslims were allowed excused absences. They were getting the best of both worlds: both Christian AND Muslin holidays. If anyone had a gripe it was the Christians, Jews, and secularist who weren't getting excused absences for the Muslim holidays!

    And that missing ONE day left students behind canard! What a crock of shit. If little Mohammad and Fatima are that stupid maybe mom and dad should spring for a tutor or help them catch up. What do they do when Mohammad and Fatima are sick for a day? Pleeeeeeze you don't need the nose of a bloodhound to smell a pile of crap.


    There are (and were) NO Muslim holidays observed on the public school systems' calendar (thereby, no absences for the non-Muslims to "excuse" themselves from). ...


    Your OP states: "Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. [emphasis mine] But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays."

    This implies to me that even though the Muslim holidays were not officially on the school calendar the Muslim students where not penalized for taking off of school to observe the holiday. They wanted the school closed; otherwise, they would not have been complaining about their children having "to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind." Read your own post more carefully before cutting and pasting.

    Well, the idiots shot themselves in the foot because there are no religious holidays of any particular religion because they changed the name of the holidays as many school systems around the country have already done. Christmas is now winter break and Easter is spring break. No one's religious holiday is observed. icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

    "Still watch the Muslim-faith citizens there get media-bashed for waging some kind of "WAR ON CHRISTMAS!" And the Muslims will say the West is "WAGING WAR ON ISLAM." There are kooks enough on both sides.
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    Nov 13, 2014 11:56 PM GMT
    Here in the UK the polititical correct brigade tried to impose a ban on Christmas Day for Winterval, "so not to offend Muslims." That was a few years ago.

    The truth is - no Muslim here supported the move, and the scheme was quickly abandoned.

    Because we do have a State religion, the Church of England with the Queen as its head and bearing the title Defender of the Faith, to ban the names of Christmas and Easter would have been nigh impossible without her consent.

    Muslims observe their holidays and we observe ours, without any friction. I would go as far to say that Muslim students, and come to that, Jewish as well, take full advantage of our Christian holidays, while we do not observe Islam holidays and festivals.

    As someone above posted: During Easter, children think of bunnies and chocolate eggs, and not so much the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Likewise, Christmas is about decorated trees and presents, and not so much about a baby born in a stable far away in both distance and time.
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    Nov 14, 2014 3:19 AM GMT
    John, in this case (this topic) the schools are banning religious references to Christmas etc to avoid demands by Muslims that schools close for Muslim holidays.
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    Jun 05, 2015 8:43 PM GMT
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said
    UndercoverMan said
    dayumm said...

    Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays.

    ...


    Much ado about nothing. They were already being given excused absences for their fuckin' holidays they were just stirring trouble to stir trouble.

    Go to Saudi Arabia and ask for a Christian holiday off. You just might get your fuckin' head off.


    That's just it, though. In this country, there should never have been any "trouble" to stir.


    There WAS no trouble to stir! Muslims were allowed excused absences. They were getting the best of both worlds: both Christian AND Muslin holidays. If anyone had a gripe it was the Christians, Jews, and secularist who weren't getting excused absences for the Muslim holidays!

    And that missing ONE day left students behind canard! What a crock of shit. If little Mohammad and Fatima are that stupid maybe mom and dad should spring for a tutor or help them catch up. What do they do when Mohammad and Fatima are sick for a day? Pleeeeeeze you don't need the nose of a bloodhound to smell a pile of crap.


    There are (and were) NO Muslim holidays observed on the public school systems' calendar (thereby, no absences for the non-Muslims to "excuse" themselves from). ...


    Your OP states: "Students who miss classes on religious holidays are given excused absences. [emphasis mine] But Muslim families have argued that students should not have to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind. They say the day off is a matter of equity, with Christian and Jewish students getting days off for their holidays."

    This implies to me that even though the Muslim holidays were not officially on the school calendar the Muslim students (were) not penalized for taking off of school to observe the holiday. They wanted the school closed; otherwise, they would not have been complaining about their children having "to choose between their faith and their schoolwork and that missing even a day leaves many students behind." Read your own post more carefully before cutting and pasting.


    Alas, the keyword in your cut-and-paste of my cut-and-paste (lol) was "on religious holidays". One cannot be "excused" if there's no "religious holiday" observed by the school district. So, after more carefully reading the post, your "implication" was flawed. icon_razz.gif (No, it didn't take nine months to read it carefully!) icon_lol.gif