Friday, March 05, 2010
After All, It's Just Shop
A teacher in Iowa is in big trouble and doesn't know why ... and that's the trouble!
Dale Halferty, who has taught industrial arts at Guthrie Center High School for three years, was given a five-day unpaid suspension because he would not allow a student to build a Wiccan altar as his shop project.
Halferty originally said that he objected because he believes in the separation of church and state and that he had previously told another student that he could not build a cross in shop class. "I don't want any religious symbols in the shop," he reportedly said. The school points out that it has a policy that prohibits discrimination against students who express religious beliefs through school assignments.
But he went on to say: "We as Christians don't get to have our say during school time, so why should he?" Ah, the rancid smell of Christian persecution complex followed closely by the heady aroma of hypocrisy:
"It scares me. I'm a Christian," he said. "This witchcraft stuff - it's terrible for our kids. It takes kids away from what they know, and leads them to a dark and violent life. We spend millions of tax dollars trying to save kids from that."
Hafferty said Wednesday he still doesn't understand why school officials are forcing him to act against his own beliefs as a Christian and allow the student to disrupt his class with a project based on a religion he believes is wrong and bad for youth.
"Personally, I think it's offensive to worship rocks and trees," Halferty said of Wicca, a religion based on ancient beliefs and a reverence for the Earth. "I am just trying to be moral. I don't know how we can profess to be Christians and let this go on."
I know you're just a shop teacher but, if you're not bright enough to figure that out, maybe you shouldn't be allowed near kids ... much less sharp tools.