Position Paper

1690 words 7 pages
Position Paper

Introduction
Looking back over the past two hundred and seven years, every session of the United States Senate has been opened with a prayer. Doing so has reaffirmed the Senates faith that God is the Sovereign Lord of our Nation. Barry C. Black currently serves as the spiritual advisor and counselor for the United States Senate with the title of Chaplin. Over the years, this position has ranged from part time, to now a full time position (United States Senate, 2011).
Ever since Engel v. Vitale, people have been upset that God has been kicked out of the classroom. Engle v. Vitale was a landmark Supreme Court case, in which it was ruled that the public school could not be started or concluded with a formal
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Weisman, the Court ruled that prayer at graduation ceremonies was unconstitutional. With this case, the prayer was not student led, but led by a religious leader chosen by the school administrators to speak at graduation (Balk, 2001). Some of the various arguments against prayer and religion in school include the school is there to educate children, not teach religion. They argue that prayer should be private and there are a variety of religions, therefor school should not decide what would be taught to the children. Religion in schools should not be mandatory because a child can pray individually to who they wish. This can and will never be outlawed, so why force religion on children who do not want to listen. With each case of prayer in school, the Supreme Court has never allowed any form of prayer to be allowed to be verbally spoken with the direction of school officials (eNotes, 2011).

Background information
Prayer has been such a large part of our history. In Colonial America, the churches were the forefront of the schools. The early American settlers pushed the importance of learning to read their Bibles. School prayer was a very natural part of school life. In the 1690s the New England Primer was introduced. Using this, the students were taught spelling, reading and the Alphabet using Bible verses (School Prayer in America, 2010). Over time, various other books, including the Blue Book Speller and the McGuffey reader, were used in

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