The great prayer in schools debate just took a turn for the ridiculous. Are you ready for this? Illinois school district officials are up in arms because they'll have to subject their kids to a 15-second moment of silence every day.
They were banned several years ago from enforcing the state law because it was deemed a violation of the separation of church and state. And with a name like "Silent Reflection and Student Prayer Act," it's no wonder. But lop off the second half of the name, and you've got "silent reflection."
Did you hear that? It's the sound of loud-mouthed kids being quiet for 15 whole seconds. Ah. Blissful. I could get on board with that, no "separation issues" at all.
I'm typing these words from my home office on a snow day. She had a long weekend followed by a day off on account of ice. I wish I could call for a 15-second "moment of silence." And I can tell you if anyone would be engaging in "prayer" during that moment, it wouldn't be the kid. In fact, I'm starting to wonder if these people in Illinois so enraged over the chance that kids could have a moment of "silent reflection" or "silent prayer" remember what it's like to be a kid.
They might take the word prayer with a grain of salt if they only had a glimpse at what's really going through kids' minds during that moment of silence:
1. Oh man, I forgot to conjugate my verbs for Senora Diaz. How do you say "my grandma died" in Spanish?
2. My mom needs to buy me more concealer. Everyone can see this giant zit.
3. Is Mr. Jones scratching his 'nads under that desk? I swear he's always doing that. At least he's not standing in front of my desk this time. Note to self: buy hand sanitizer to use next time he hands me a pencil.
4. Boston College or Oberlin? Which one is farther from my parents' house?
5. I'm the only virgin left in this homeroom. FML.
6. I wonder if Ms. Smith is going to give me my iPod back by the end of the day. I need it for dance class tonight.
7. I'm hungry. I hope Mr. Johnson doesn't smell the weed over the Axe I sprayed in the car. Ha. His name is Johnson. He must like nuts. Dude, I could eat some nuts now. I'm hungry.
8. I have more Facebook friends than anyone in this room. Can I put that under special awards on my college app?
There might be one or two kids in there praying quietly, but rest assured, there's plenty of debauchery remaining in our high schools. I think we're safe. Good luck keeping them quiet!
Is a moment of silence really pushing kids to pray in schools?
Image via Dave Hamster/Flickr