Congratulations to Jessica Ahlquist

Posted by on January 12, 2012 in Activism, Atheism, Uncategorized | 3 comments

I can hardly imagine the pluck and bravery of this young woman. Especially in high school, where such action can and does result in serious social consequences, there are still people out there who put themselves on the line to defend their values.

In this case, she called on the ACLU to challenge the unquestionably sectarian “School Prayer” posted on the walls of her high school.

Seriously, schools should stick to education and not erect religious barriers up between the students. Nothing says “you are just not one of us” like a declaration that your school promotes a religion you don’t believe in. And every student deserves to belong in their own school. And, yes, it is unconstitutional for schools to give endorsement to religion, for good reason.

Ahlquist said she is proud of her decision to fight for what she felt was right.

“Even if kids in school hate you, even if there are nasty comments all over the Internet, it’s important to just stand true to what you believe in,” Ahlquist said.

From: Student who challenged Prayer Banner speaks out

If you appreciate this young woman as much as I do, you can show your support in a concrete way by contributing to Jessica’s scholarship fund.

EDIT: Actually, as the ChipIn widget does not show properly on my blog, here is a better link for Jessica’s scholarship fund: A fundraiser for Jessica Ahlquist

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3 Comments

  1. See, this is a perfect example of attempting to squelch religious expression. It’s become ridiculous. It’s the kind of thing that really infuriates me and makes me feel forced into voting for the right side of the aisle, despite the fact that I disagree with so many of their perspectives. The left, however, are going down a path that truly scares me as a Christian in this nation.

    • The banner belongs in a church, or better, in a private Christian school. For public school, to post something something like this on the wall, especially as the school’s “School Prayer” is just wrong. It is to say Christians belong at the school more so than all the other students that come though the door. Jessica saw it as saying that her views were not repected, though she is as much of a student at that school as anyone else. I think it was pretty clear with the reaction that she got at that first council meeting where she brought up her disgreement with the banner that it DID mean her views are not respected. The banner is special priviledge to Christians and repression and censorship to everyone else. So not appropriate in a public school which serves students from all religions and backgrounds.

  2. Jessica should be rewarded and revered for what she’s done, not punished. She ELIMINATED the squelching of religious expression, not caused it. What people need to do is look beyond their own viewpoint into what is right and just for all people. Jessica did that, and found an all-too-rare victory. We need more people with that courage.