Thursday, December 09, 2010

Winter concert

Tonight was the (deep breath) Junior High/High School band/chorus/choir/Madrigal concert. Basically, any student over the age of 11 who does anything musical in school gets onstage and does it. Ryan is in chorus and band so she was onstage for a good chunk of it. I enjoyed the evening overall. I just, I wish there was a way to have a holiday concert without the religion. Or with more religions represented. I just don't like all the exclusively Jesus stuff. There are plenty of secular songs out there; it's not like Oh Come All Ye Faithful and Silent Night are the only Christmas songs out there. And as long as I'm not hearing any Muslim or Jewish songs, it just makes it an endorsement of Christianity over other religions, which I oppose. I oppose the school giving the impression (and it's not a vague inferrence, either) that Christianity is the only viable religious choice out there. It's not a Christian school, and being in the chorus (I don't mind as much when they don't sing the words to the songs) shouldn't mean being in a Christian choir. If they were representing any other religion, it would be different. I have no real problem with religion being taught in schools, in the abstract as a sociological force or a World Studies sort of thing. It's when Christianity is put out there like its the only or the main option that it bugs me. Most people believe what they believe, religion-wise, because it's what they were taught. Some people do search and research and think a whole lot about it, but for most people it's just what they've been exposed to. There's a reason there aren't a lot of Shinto or Hindu converts in rural areas. And little things like being graded on singing only the Christian hymns in public school contribute to that. It might be fine for some kids who are already being told that these beliefs are the ones to have, but for my kid it sort of undermines my attempts to bring her up as one of those who search and research and give it a lot of thought.

I know a lot of people disagree with me on how people find their faith. But I have to ask them, can you name 4 main religious texts? Bible, Torah, Quran, then what? I'm not saying that yor faith has to be wrong because your parents or environment taught it to you. I'm just saying that the odds are, someone who grows up in the midwest US will choose Christianity if raised without a religion, because it's everywhere. Why grade kids on memorizing lines about the king of Earth and "a savior is born"? Just stick to Sleigh Ride and Winter Wonderland. They don't undermine anyone's parenting, do they?

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