Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Silent Night: Mixed Signals from Americans United

Recently an anonymous Tuscumbia parent requested that the organization Americans United for Separation of Church and State intervene concerning the school system's annual Christmas play...or should that be holiday play? It seems one of the songs to be featured was Silent Night.

Americans United then wrote the Tuscumbia School Board requesting the song be dropped from the program. The board refused to honor the request, but it's been reported that the song was moved from the finale to a place of less importance in the production.

Such requests are no longer novel, but we do question the purpose for Americans United becoming involved in this issue. The following is taken from their website:

Public schools may incorporate some religious music into concerts and other events, but it should not dominate. Some purely religious plays and other works are not appropriate for public schools. No student should be punished for declining to play religious music.

Seemingly not everyone at Americans United is on the same page. The group has suggested it may take stronger action next year; unless they edit their mission statement in the upcoming year, we would expect the Tuscumbia School Board to continue to ignore the group.


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  1. I suppose next year they'll insist that Tuscumbia call its Dickens Christmas ya'll, Dickens Holiday ya'll.

  2. This is just too silly, why would anyone be interested in our little peaceful town. It is not illegal to have religious music in schools. it is also legal to teach from the bible if it is used for it's historical content, etc. In big cities all across this country Christian Christmas songs are sung by children. Hanukkah songs are also sung, but no one seems to complain about Hanukkah songs. Folks ought not be a messing with us in Tuscumbia!