Home > Uncategorized > Muslim After School Clubs Illustrate Problems Mixing Religion and Schools

Muslim After School Clubs Illustrate Problems Mixing Religion and Schools

Alpha News, an “…advanced social media and online technology platforms to deliver important news programming to audiences everywhere in Minnesota,” published an article on the increase in the number Muslim Student Associations in public schools in Minnesota, posing the question in the title “Are Muslim Student Associations in Public Schools a Concern?”. From my perspective, it was only a matter of time before this issue emerged. The census in 2010 indicated that Islam was the fastest growing religion in our country with 2.6 million living in the U.S. at that time, up from 1 million in 2000 it was inevitable that Muslim students would seek the same status for religiously affiliated clubs as Christian students sought decades earlier. Having established policies that grant religiously affiliated clubs standing in public schools, administrators and school boards would be hard pressed to deny equal access to Muslim clubs despite the fact that some would see such access as a means of promoting jihadists. The Alpha article, for example, describes a purported link between student-led clubs in some of its schools and the Muslim Brotherhood, a radical group that

….plans to conduct “Civilization Jihad” by co-opting the leadership of the United States into believing a counterfactual understanding about Islam and the nature of the Muslim Brotherhood, forcing our leaders to enforce the Muslim Brotherhood narrative on their subordinates.

The article goes on to note that:

In some cases, taxpayers help to fund clubs and activities because schools need to have money in their budgets to pay for club advisors. In other instances, the school might charge participants a fee to cover costs of the club or activity, especially if the club or activity is a student-led group.

In its concluding paragraphs the article notes that congress has legislation that seeks to outlaw the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization, which the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood views as an overreaction:

Because of the growing concern over the Muslim Brotherhood, eighty members of Congress now support legislation calling on the State Department to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a foreign terrorist organization.  The House version of the “Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act” passed the Judiciary Committee earlier this year. The Muslim Brotherhood accuses the US Congress of waging a war on moderate Islam with the The Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act.  In a Counterjihadreport.com article, a Muslim Brotherhood spokesperson said, “This bill is unjust and purely political. It reflects the rising tide of hatred and hostility with which right-wing extremist Republicans, lobbyists and politicians are trying to drag the American people into ideological war with the Muslim world, at the heart of it is the Muslim Brotherhood, the largest and most popular Islamic movement.”  However, the “The Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act” has bipartisan support, with Minnesota Congressman Collin Peterson signing on as one of the two democrat co-sponsors of the bill.

While it remains to be seen if the Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act will eventually become law, co-sponsor of the bill, Representative Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) emphasized that the Muslim Brotherhood “continues to pose a global threat” and the U.S. “must recognize and sanction the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization as part of our national security strategy.”

While this piece of legislation is pending, the same group promoting the outlawing of Muslim student organizations is also promoting the notion that public dollars should be available to parents to send their children to religiously affiliated private schools…. an idea that will likely run into problems in the future given that there were an estimated 240 to 250 Islamic private schools in place in 2011 and those schools, like their Catholic and Christian counterparts, would seemingly be eligible for public funding if vouchers were put in place.

The bottom line in all of this is that there should be a wall built separating church and state instead of building a wall to keep those who practice a particular religion out of our country. The wall has collapsed when it comes to student-led clubs: here’s hoping it stays in place if and when voucher legislation is passed.

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  1. Byron Knutsen
    September 25, 2016 at 10:47 pm

    I am afraid that some of these walls have already been built. Like back in the time when schools were told that there was no way they could have prayers to start the day. It seems that it is much easier for our political leaders to just say NO than to figure out a system that would work for both religious groups and non religious groups. Since these walls have been built, schools have “gone to —- in a handbasket” pretty quickly. I can see the day coming when religion will only be allowed in public between the hours of 9-12 on Sunday morning. Why does the left have so much trouble understanding that the allowance of a religious event to happen is not the same as supporting a particular religion? Answer please.

    • September 26, 2016 at 12:16 am

      I have no problem with where the walls are now… but if religious clubs are allowed in schools it can’t be limited to Christianity because then the State would be linked to a particular religious belief which is contrary to our Constitution. I DO have a problem with using public funds to send children to a school that explicitly teaches religion and that is where some legislators in the House and Senate want us to go.

      Date: Sun, 25 Sep 2016 22:47:58 +0000 To: wgersen@hotmail.com

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