The Cranston High West debacle is still making news with various outlets, including the NY Times, the Washington Post, and the NPR/PRI’s The Takeaway. They are catching up on the story of 16-year old Jessica Ahlquist and her victory in getting Christian prayer banner removed from the public school auditorium where it never should have been in the first place.
Many have asked why not provide a secular version of the same ideals in the new banner. For example, Sally Quinn suggests “Let us each day desire to do our best, to grow mentally and morally as well as physically, to be kind and to be helpful.” In fact, this offer was made to the school board and they refused, demanding that the original, religious language must remain. Sarah Barringer Gordon, a Professor of History and Constitutional Law at the University of Pennsylvania, pointed out the hypocrisy, as the banner was first put up in 1963 by the administration as a way of thumbing their nose at the Supreme Court, whose 1962 ruling banned the recitation of religious prayers in public schools.
Now that the prayer has to come down, the floodgates of hate have opened up. Rather than obey the law, there was name-calling, death-threats, and even the refusal to deliver flowers! In light of the reaction, Kill By Fish recently came up with the perfect replacement for the Cranston West banner:
Now, that is a prayer that I can say amen to.