Why Now?
Friday, November 04, 2005
  Early Christmas Coal
Robert over at Interstate 4 Jamming continues his excellent Florida reporting and points to probable victims for Bill O'Reilly's annual screed on the "Liberals Who Stole Christmas": the Hillsborough County School Board.
...It was decided after an Islamic group requested an official student holiday for Eid-Al-Fitr, the end of Ramadan. The panel also decided last week to drop student holidays for Yom Kippur and Good Friday, and designating what had been the Christmas/New Year's break as the "Winter Holiday".
The thing about the Florida constitution is that it mandates a policy of "all or none", either every group gets the same privileges, or no one gets them. Given all the time lost to hurricanes, school boards can't continue to schedule school holidays and still meet requirements, even though school starts in August in most Florida districts. The demands of the Florida Comprehensive Achievement Test, No Child Left Behind, and the probability of severe hurricane seasons are making schools expand the school year. The "Summer Holiday" may become a memory from childhood in the not too distant future.

The school board is allowing excused absences for religious purposes, but with an increasingly diverse population, school boards are being forced to become more religiously neutral.

Not that they will care, but those countries in which religion and the state are closely tied might want to look back at history. I would challenge them to find a single example where the religion ultimately benefited from the association. Being amoral, politics always taints religion. It is rare indeed to find people who can deal effectively with the here and now while focused on the hereafter.

[Edit: Mind like a sieve. John at archy already caught Bill's first screed. It starts earlier every year.]

 



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