Down in North Carolina they will be singing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer in the Christmas pageant much to the dismay of a local jewish mother. This mother had asked the school board to not use the song because it had the words 'Christmas' and 'Santa Claus' saying they were religious overtones that she did not want her child exposed to and the school was a secular environment. At first the principal pulled it from the program, but unhappy parents flooded the school board with phone calls and the song was put back in. According to Fox News, she got lawyers involved. She lost. Apparently she asked for a Hanuka song to be included but since 'Rudolph' was ruled secular they declined to do so.
The main thing that frustrated me about the video interview, is the reporter begins by painting a picture of a over reactive grinchy mother who would steal the joy of christmas from the other children. After effectively convincing you she is nuts there is the mention of 'oh and by the way, she's Jewish'. Nice, eh?
This is a decent example of why I chose to homeschool. This child could certainly opt out of the school pageant but she could not opt out of weekly music class. It's true that the characters of Rudolph and Santa are secular. (actually Santa may have pagan roots so he is certainly not christian.) The song itself does mention the word Christmas and isn't like the song 'Frosty the snowman' which is purely secular. And although the holiday of Christmas is mostly secular in celebration now, the actual word 'Christmas' is obviously christian. So what was the mother to do? Obviously the school board thought they were being sensitive to their populace by not including songs like 'Silent night' but it still poses a bit of a problem. On top of that they could have easily included "Dreidal, dreidal, dreidal" to the program as a Jewish secular alternative, I mean nothing religious there...or is there?
I have a question. Or three.
9 months ago