Schools should foster debate

Posted: Wednesday, October 09, 2002

Thursday's Empire quoted School Board member Chuck Cohen as expressing deep concern over what might happen if a "significant majority" of students and teachers believed in and participated in a "Day of Prayer."

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Chuck and his colleagues have already indicated their disdain for students' First Amendment rights of free expression. Now Chuck comes out against First Amendment freedom of religion for both students and faculty. How terrible, he says, if students and faculty were to engage in prayer!

What ever happened to the notion that schools are places where students may safely debate politics, religion, and any other controversial topic? How about a regular Freedom Day when every student and every teacher can discuss, debate, and yes, even pray without fear of retaliation by the School Board?

Douglas K. Mertz


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