The student news publication of Bryant High School in Bryant, Arkansas

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The student news publication of Bryant High School in Bryant, Arkansas

Prospective Online

The student news publication of Bryant High School in Bryant, Arkansas

Prospective Online

Senior Burnout
May 15, 2024
Photo Illustration
The Next Step
May 15, 2024
Illustration of Bob Marley.
One Love
April 17, 2024
Senior Burnout
May 15, 2024
Photo Illustration
The Next Step
May 15, 2024
Illustration of Bob Marley.
One Love
April 17, 2024

Celebrations

Celebrations

School calendars published months in advance are speckled with days off. Christmas, Easter, Good Friday; living in the Bible Belt, 5-year old me was under the illusion everyone was similar in his or her beliefs. Incomprehensible words on my kindergarten sized, Winnie the Pooh calendar didn’t catch my second glance.

Ignorant to Hindu holidays like Holi and blind to Islam’s Hajj, the partiality of the American education system didn’t hit me until I was 14 years old.

As a country that exudes pride in being a melting pot of cultures, children aren’t educated to respect other ethnicities from when they start school. School boards across the nation disregard non-Christian holidays as if they weren’t holidays at all.

The diversity in religious background of immigrants coming to America is mirrored in the demographics of our school. I would appreciate the option to explore other cultures, but to do that, school would have to be missed which is a concern of my parents and my own.

Instead of respecting holidays that take up multiple days, like Ramadan and Hanukkah, we get the weeks surrounding Christmas out of school.

As difficult as it would be, school systems should distribute holidays equally around different cultures. Take one of the days dedicated to Christmas and reinstate it as a day off to honor Ramadan. This would not suppress Christians, they would still keep Christmas off, but it would give equal religious freedom to all students.

Due to recent snow days, one of the only options of many district’s to taking away our observation of Good Friday. Using social media as their platform, teenagers have caviled claiming religious obstruction as if the majority of them were going to be worshiping something other than Netflix for their school-free eight hours.

Raised in a Christian household (in addition to being a normal teenager), I have no grounds to complain about school days off, however now aware of other cultures, I can’t help but have a nagging guilt in the back of my mind that, in most of America’s eyes, my classmates don’t deserve the same recognition as Christians. My peers lose their assessable days off due to part of their identity. Days that will be unexcused and seen by colleges as truant behavior, not as religious freedom.

Founded in relationship with our country, separation of church and state reflects a current issue that consumed the colonies.  Protestant Betty Ross imagined equality of religions weaving it’s way through our countries bloodstream while sewing the new symbol of freedom into existence, but centuries later her dream hasn’t been fulfilled, it’s target only shifted to a new minority. While Protestants obtained their desired freedoms, the church maintained its influence over state legislature.

Our Elementary sized brains are filled with facts about how people “like-us” were oppressed while next to us sat a child whose whole life would feel like that. Schools teach us how our ancestors beat oppression, but not how to beat it ourselves.

Schools drill history so we won’t repeat it, but knowing history doesn’t always mean learning from it. To evolve as a society, we must look back on our previous mistakes and apply them to the present to make the future more at peace.

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