The attacks on Christmas are getting more bizarre with each complaint. The latest comes from a group of parents in Missoula, Montana who are upset over the religious nature of Christmas songs performed at a local elementary school. The parents are alleging the songs about the Baby Jesus are unconstitutional and quote, a “form of bullying.”
The parents, who not surprisingly declined to be identified, are threatening to sue the Missoula County Public School District unless songs like “Joy to the World” and “Good Christian Men Rejoice” are replaced with secular tunes.
In a letter to the school district the parents wrote “Bullying is such a hot topic, yet that seems to be what is occurring here. When the children are singing about the lord and savior Jesus Christ – public school is not the place.”
Here is the full text of the anonymous letter, according to the Missoulian:
My children attend Chief Charlo elementary and last year several parents complained about the holiday program as it had a heavy religious base. With many of the children in our neighborhood up here being jewish and buddhist as well as a few muslim and atheist students, we were assured that this year it would be a secular program. One of the largest complaints last year were the young children singing about “their lord” this was concerning to many families and it was clear that several of the students were uncomfortable. I am writing you today because my children came home upset because they again are performing a religion based program. I’m so upset and there is a group of parents that are looking at talking to legal council. We pay the taxes for this school. It is a public school. I have no problem with children having personal religious practices at school, but to choose one religion and make it part of the curriculum is wrong. My children and several of their friends and parents are very upset. It is wrong to make these children feel uncomfortable and the law clearly describes the separation of church and state when it comes to public schools and religious teachings. You may not find this to be a big deal, but when my children are crying because they don’t want to be singled out but what they are doing in school directly conflicts with their faith, it’s a big deal. There was a large discussion about this last year and we had hoped as a community that this had been resolved.
We would like this fixed… for our children. They deserve to hold true to their own faith and not made to recite things they do not believe or have to be targeted by bringing it up. Bullying is such a hot topic, yet that seems to be what is occurring here. The children are to afraid to speak up as they know they will be singled out and that is wrong. In this day and age, I would have assumed that the school district would be more understanding and accepting of children’s differences. We have no problem with it being called a christmas concert, it just the fact that the material should be secular. Frosty the snowman, santa clause, rudolf the red nosed reindeer. These are things that offend no one, but when the children are singing about their lord and savior, Jesus Christ… public school is not the place. Please let me know if there are steps we can take as a group to resolve this. Contact with the music teacher and school has made no effect, apparently. As a group we are looking at contacting legal council, as these are our children’s developmental years and they deserve to be treated as equals and valued for their individuality and heritage, not forced to be reformed to what is seen as the majority.
Thank you for your time,
~Chief Charlo Concerned Parents
“Then the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: ‘Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!’”