Friday, May 27, 2005

You wanna talk activist judges?

Picture it: You and your significant other have a child. You decide to raise that child in the religion that you both practice. This child is in school (Catholic school, to be precise--not your religion, but that's not a big deal at the school). You decide that things aren't working out, so you and your partner make a decision to get a divorce. During the proceedings, nothing is brought up by you or your spouse about religion; you intend to raise the child as you always have. But, the judge decides to address that in his opinion. He says that you cannot expose your son to "non-mainstream religious beliefs."


What could possibly be the rationale for this? "There is a discrepancy between Ms. Jones and Mr. Jones' lifestyle and the belief system adhered to by the parochial school." So, because the boy attends a Catholic school, his parents can't teach him their religion? Does that mean my parents were wrong in raising me as a Baptist thought I went to a public school that was theoretically religion-free, because I got conflicting messages?

In case you're wondering, the parents here practice Wicca, but I don't see that that matters one whit. Maybe if the parents were practicing some religion requiring human sacrifice, or something that could feasibly hurt the child. But, no... According to Mr. Jones, Wicca "is an understanding that we're all connected, and respecting that."

Whether or not you agree with Wiccanism, whether or not you think that everyone should be of your religion or of no religion, you should be outraged by this! If a judge decided to rule that parents couldn't raise their children as scary fundamentalists, there would be an outcry about the liberal judiciary.

Who, by the way, decides if a religion is "mainstream"? That judge? National opinion polls? Sorry, I don't think the judge or national opinion belong in my choice of religion or how I raise my (hypothetical) child, thank you very much!

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