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Old 02-28-2007, 09:40 AM   #1
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School Banned Jesus Halloween Costume

Well they said he couldn't say he was Jesus or wear the crown of thorns-he had to say he was a Roman emperor. This reminds me a bit of a plot on Boston Legal-but I think the teacher was dressed as a witch and a Wiccan couple and a Christian couple were both opposed to that and to Halloween being observed at school. Maybe they should just get rid of the costume thing altogether in schools, I don't know..of course I have my doubts as to whether or not it was his idea to dress as Jesus.

PHILADELPHIA Feb 21, 2007 (AP)— A Christian legal group has sued a school district on behalf of a 10-year-old boy who claims his rights to religion and free speech were violated when he was not allowed to wear a Jesus costume during Halloween activities.

The complaint, filed in federal court Tuesday by the Alliance Defense Fund, says officials at Willow Hill Elementary School in suburban Glenside told the boy Oct. 31 that he could not wear his faux crown of thorns or tell others he was dressed as Jesus.

The principal, Patricia Whitmire, told the boy's mother that the costume violated a policy prohibiting the promotion of religion, according to the lawsuit. Whitmire suggested that the fourth-grader, whose costume included a robe, identify himself as a Roman emperor, the suit states.

Though the boy's costume was rejected because of its religious nature, the principal allowed other students to dress up as witches and devils, according to the lawsuit, which identified the boy only by his initials.

Whitmire and the Abington School District are named as defendants. District attorney Ken Roos said Wednesday that he had not seen the suit and that school officials "feel like we've been a little bit ambushed here."

The boy and his mother are Christians who object to the pagan elements of Halloween, but the mother did not want the boy isolated for refusing to wear a costume, according to the lawsuit.

Willow Hill officials required students to wear a costume to participate in a parade and party; those who did not were sent to the computer room, the suit says.

The boy no longer attends the school.

The Alliance Defense Fund is based in Scottsdale, Ariz.
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:44 AM   #2
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Well as much as I find irony in dressing like Jesus for halloween, it was stupid not to let him dress up as Jesus, just as the lawsuit itself is ridiculous.
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:56 AM   #3
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There's a copy of the complaint on the fund's site. I'm not promoting or defending that fund in any way, I was just curious to see if they had more info there.

http://www.alliancedefensefund.org/n....aspx?cid=4016

Supposedly they also allowed a skeleton covered with blood- where do you draw a line, is it only at religion? I'm sure of course that extreme costumes wouldn't have been allowed. I know this is another case that might seem to smack of O'Reilly type paranoia, but I don't see how it would have truly promoted religion-unless he started giving sermons or reading from The Bible. Many kids see Jesus images whether they are Christian or not -and they are only kids having fun by dressing in costumes.
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Old 02-28-2007, 11:21 AM   #4
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The issue of free speech as it pertains to the free-exercise of religion is a valid one. But talk about picking the wrong fight.

Can't we just tell the parents "No" on the grounds that it's in bad taste and just as likely to offend believers. I mean, what if this kid is a booger-eater? How's that gonna look?
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Old 02-28-2007, 11:40 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by INDY500
The issue of free speech as it pertains to the free-exercise of religion is a valid one. But talk about picking the wrong fight.

Can't we just tell the parents "No" on the grounds that it's in bad taste and just as likely to offend believers. I mean, what if this kid is a booger-eater? How's that gonna look?
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Old 02-28-2007, 11:44 AM   #6
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I don't see a problem with him dressing up as Jesus. I don't see a problem with people dressing as the devil or buddha what ever. It's fucking halloween for gods sake. Can no one have fun anymore with our morals always getting in the fucking way.

If the teacher asked that he not wear a jesus costume, then I think no one should be allowed to wear a costume.
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Old 02-28-2007, 11:49 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by INDY500
The issue of free speech as it pertains to the free-exercise of religion is a valid one. But talk about picking the wrong fight.

Can't we just tell the parents "No" on the grounds that it's in bad taste and just as likely to offend believers. I mean, what if this kid is a booger-eater? How's that gonna look?


Actually, my first thought (having grown up in a pretty conservative Christian background) was that religious people might find it offensive and in bad taste to mix Jesus in with a pagan holiday. Kinda like mocking him.
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Old 02-28-2007, 06:14 PM   #8
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While I think it was stupid not to allow the costume, I think "where do you draw the line" is a valid question. What if some sicko kid wanted to dress as Manson, or Hitler, or dress as a Klansman?
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Old 02-28-2007, 06:56 PM   #9
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Doesn't common sense tell you, in a generally acceptable way, where the line should be drawn? There's no comparison to Jesus and Hitler or Manson, etc., especially as those figures draw more universal opposition than someone's views on religion might. I think we can all agree that a Hitler costume is inappropriate for a child, regardless of belief, but Jesus? It's a real stretch. Like bvs said, though, it's ironic.
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Old 02-28-2007, 07:04 PM   #10
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^ Oh obviously...I was being extreme. I was just curious where people would draw the line between OK and not OK. Since these were 10-year-olds I doubt anything really over the top would have ever come up. Personally I think Jesus should have been OK, and yes it's ironic to dress as him for Halloween - I could see someone getting offended.
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Old 02-28-2007, 07:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Angela Harlem
I think we can all agree that a Hitler costume is inappropriate for a child...
I'm picturing that now, with the little mustache and all

Common sense should prevail, as you say. It really seems to be in short supply in some circles. While I don't have a problem with a Jesus costume, I can't help but think that the kid is being used to push a legal argument. The parents are "Christians who object to the pagan elements of Halloween." Purposely dressing a child like Jesus seems a little antagonistic, in this context. At the same time, the school should have allowed him to dress up and attend the party. They had the ultimate power to be the bigger person in the argument.

Poor Kid.
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Old 02-28-2007, 07:31 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by CTU2fan
^ Oh obviously...I was being extreme. I was just curious where people would draw the line between OK and not OK. Since these were 10-year-olds I doubt anything really over the top would have ever come up. Personally I think Jesus should have been OK, and yes it's ironic to dress as him for Halloween - I could see someone getting offended.
Sorry, you were clear originally. I was probably not

And I agree the kid was being used to push the adult debate.
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:13 PM   #13
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Originally posted by angelordevil
Common sense should prevail,...
It should, but for a lot of people common sense has gone the way of the dinosaurs.

Good news, though - in its place a new religion has sprung up! It's called Offendedism and it's fervently practiced by those just itching to be a victim. Anyone is welcome to join Offendedism and there are even elders of the Church ('lawyers' I think they're called) who will not only help indoctrinate you and show you the way to be eternally Offended, but they'll teach you how you can benefit from it financially. It's all the rage across the nation.... surely you folks have heard of it?


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Old 02-28-2007, 09:19 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by sulawesigirl4


Actually, my first thought (having grown up in a pretty conservative Christian background) was that religious people might find it offensive and in bad taste to mix Jesus in with a pagan holiday. Kinda like mocking him.
But the little child Jesus could mock the devil kids and they would flee from the kid dressed as Thee.

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Old 02-28-2007, 09:25 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by BluRmGrl



Good news, though - in its place a new religion has sprung up! It's called Offendedism and it's fervently practiced by those just itching to be a victim. Anyone is welcome to join Offendedism and there are even elders of the Church ('lawyers' I think they're called) who will not only help indoctrinate you and show you the way to be eternally Offended, but they'll teach you how you can benefit from it financially. It's all the rage across the nation.... surely you folks have heard of it?


I like your take on "Offendism;" it's quite real! I think if you told enough people that the Constitution guarantees the right of the individual to not be "offended," many people would believe it.

Keep in mind, though, that the policy which was interpreted to forbid the kid from dressing as Jesus was likely interpreted so that non-Christians would not be offended by his costume.

Perhaps when they told him to proclaim himself a Roman emperor, the kid should have said, "Better yet, I'm the King of Kings!"

~U2Alabama
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