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   Judge Legalizes Persecution of Children

by Jen Shroder

True Story: Little Sarah didnít want to "become Muslim." She didnít want to praise Allah or fast for Ramadan, so her mom wrote her a note to "opt out" of the 7th grade Islam course. When Sarah handed her teacher the note, the teacher became angry, held up the note and shouted at the class, "Is there anyone else!?"

Another student crumpled the note on her desk, squeezing it tightly, searching for the strength to hold up her note as Sarah did. "Sarahís in big trouble," someone whispered. The teacher, who had dressed in a belly-dancing costume, appeared angry as she glared at the class, waiting.

Peter, a grown fisherman, faltered at the question of a servant girl, "Arenít you one of His disciples?" Peter eyed the sharp spear of a Roman soldier and replied, "I donít know Him." A servant pointed a finger and accused him, "DIDNíT I SEE YOU IN THE GARDEN WITH HIM??!!!"

The teacherís words echoed in the classroom, "IS THERE ANYONE ELSE?!!!! Sarah stood there, alone and condemned, and her friend struggled to join her, gripping her note, fearful of the sharp spear of the teacherís wrath and the eyes of her classmates, the eyes of a crowd.

WHY are our children being persecuted at the tender age of 12 in ways that a brawling fisherman such as Peter could not withstand? Judge Phyllis Hamilton ruled "Thus, even if Sarah perceived Carr [teacher] as becoming angry at her for requesting not to participate in the unit, or that Carr seemed unwilling to answer her (unasked) questions about her alternate assignment, that is nonetheless not enough to revive an otherwise-improper Establishment Clause claim." [Citing another case], "student's allegations of retaliation and harassment based on decision to opt out of class later found to be constitutional, if true, demonstrated a 'lack of sensitivity, crudeness, and poor judgment' on the part of the school community,' but 'd[id] not rise to the level of a constitutional violation' and could not be used to 'breathe constitutional life into otherwise unactionable conduct.' Carr thus did not violate Samantha's constitutional rights."  Eklund v. Byron Union School District, 19:24

Donít miss this. It is now open season on any child who opts out unless a violation of constitutional rights, such as the Establishment Clause, can be proved. This outrageous example of questioning what "is" is, to claim participation in religious practices is not real participation because a hypothetical "reasonable observer" is imagined by the court to view the practice as "without belief," is such a perversion of the law that all hope of justice is lost. Hamilton has given a free pass to teachers to hold our children up to abusive public scrutiny and intimidation if they opt out.

Sarah was sent to the school office, listening to comments from other children about how she did something wrong. She reported to the school office for more than a month, often three full class periods a day, and was told to study without instruction or guidance from the teacher who was always too busy. She was tested on an entire chapter of the French revolution and failed.

Her parents sought justice through our court system and were met by an infuriating judgment. Appealing to the Ninth District Court of Appeals is like appealing to Hitler because Himmler was abusive. Public schools have applied their own religion of Pluralism in a fascist manner, depriving all of us our constitutional rights.


Because Hamilton has made it legal to persecute our children, my son will not be opting out of the Islam unit or any other unit. I can withstand death threats, phone calls, searching calls to relatives, Palestinian websites directing people to find me, warnings from the FBI, I am willing to take all of that on and more, but I am NOT willing to subject my son to the wrath of a teacher holding him up to persecution in public school, legalized by Hamilton!


Opting out is often a poor choice. Parents are reluctant to single their children out at this tender age when children are just beginning to feel self conscious about their identity. Expecting our children to stand strong for Jesus when we wonít even take the time to object or vote is weak. Our children need US to be strong. Donít allow public schools to abuse our children because of their faith. Jesus Christ said, "Pick up your cross and follow Me," and we do, but our children need our help. God provided children with parents to defend them. Donít make your child carry his or her cross alone.

REGISTER TO VOTE. SIGN THE PETITION. For the love of God, nation and children, please sign.

Christians fail to sign petitions and contact senators because it feels hopeless, do we really think reps like Feinstein or Boxer will listen? We feel inconsequential and trying only exacerbates that feeling.

But there is One who is watching who doesn't consider you inconsequential. As you take the time to sign petitions, His eyes are upon you as He watches your labor of love. God knows the internal struggle, the frustration, the tendencies we have to ignore the situation because we don't want to feel the outrage about so many issues. He knows the effort it takes to exert the diligence to seek and sign petitions, He knows the oppressive spirit that whispers in your ear, "Why bother to vote? The world will do what it will do," and it's so much easier to pick up the remote.

But we just gave up the battle, we signed our children over to the mistreatment of teachers, to the abuse of judges like Hamilton. We gave our freedom to the liberal special interest groups that DO take the time as they target our children.

These small internal struggles are what all of heaven watch for. We give audience to a spiritual realm that curiously watches this small battle...are we lukewarm or do we exert the faith of David? This is far more interesting to angels than the usual hours we fill up our world with. These small battles are why we exist.

Nobody on earth is watching as we tediously fill out another petition form. There is no applause that we can hear, no parties, no slaps on our back from fellow Christians, we don't call excitedly to proclaim our 2 minute effort for Christ.

But there is One who watches and is blessed. The One who was betrayed and abandoned is not abandoned now. Because you took the time, you made that small yet eternally remembered effort to sign your name on a petition to stand for the message of Christ, and regardless of what you think, it is NOT a small battle. You overcame the continuous onslaught of "who cares", "it won't matter", and "I'm only one person."

You are one person that means more than the world to Jesus Christ. More than His comfort, more than His life, you made a decision to stand with Him, and as you tirelessly sign petitions in the face of imagined futility, God smiles, your efforts are purely for Him, and all of heaven applauds.


*The name of Sarah was changed to protect her privacy. Please pray for her, there is no doubt she has been through a lot, and the judgment must have been devastating for the whole family.