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Cambridge Schools Get A Muslim Holiday

From a cheering Boston Globe:

School system to get Muslim holiday

By Brock Parker, Globe Correspondent  |  October 10, 2010

As a Muslim and a high school senior at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School, 17-year-old Dunia Kassay faces a tough choice every year on Islamic holy days: go to school or stay home to be with family and friends.

If she stays home, Kassay says, she will be forced to play catch-up and make up her school assignments.

Yes, we all know how difficult it is to make up missing a day of school. It can scar you for life.

But if she goes to school, she will be neglecting what she feels is her religious obligation on holidays such as Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting

How true. For instance, if she doesn’t get to celebrate Eid al-Adha at home with her family, she might miss seeing a goat get its throat cut and watching it slowly bleed to death.

But beginning next year, Cambridge public schools will attempt to make it easier for Muslim students to honor their highest holy days.

Exactly what is the Muslim population of Cambridge? A percent of one percent?

In a move that school officials believe is the first of its kind in the state, Cambridge will close schools for one Muslim holiday each year beginning in the 2011-2012 school year.

The school will either close for Eid al-Fitr or Eid al-Adha, also known as the Festival of Sacrifice, depending on which holiday falls within the school year. If both fall within the school calendar, the district will close for only one of the days

Cambridge School Committee member Marc McGovern, who pushed for the Muslim holiday in city schools, said he thinks people need to take a step back from what he called hysteria and the stereotypes of all Muslims as terrorists.

“At a time when I think the Muslim population is being characterized with a broad brush in a negative way, I think it’s important for us to say we’re not going to do that here,’’ McGovern said.

So it’s purely a political statement. It has nothing to do with the students missing the holidays at home, after all.

Cambridge schools already close for some Christian and Jewish holidays, and McGovern said he believes Muslims should be treated equally.

What "Christian and Jewish holidays" do the schools there close for? Most of the country celebrates ‘Winterfest’ and ‘Springfest.’

“The issue that sort of came up was should we celebrate any religious holidays, but there was not the will to take away Good Friday or one of the Jewish holidays,’’ he said. “So I said, if that is the case, I think we have an obligation to celebrate one of the Muslim holidays, as well.’’ …

If Mr. McGovern is claiming the Cambridge schools close for Good Friday, we hope he is ready for an ACLU lawsuit. Which reminds us, where is the ACLU?

(Just kidding. We realize that the ACLU only goes after Christianity. All other ‘religions’ – the more anti-American the better – get a free pass. In fact, they get as much help from the ACLU as possible.)

[David Mustonen, communications coordinator for the school system] said that at first there were some people in the community who didn’t like the schools being closed on Eid holidays. “However, I don’t think this is the case anymore as people have come to realize that it is no different then taking time off at Christmas or Easter,’’ Mustonen said in an e-mail

Except, as we have noted, like most American schools, the Cambridge schools do not close for Christmas or Easter.

According to the Cambridge Public School District’s website, their schools will be closed this year from December 24 until December 31st for "Winter Vacation."

Moreover, the Cambridge schools will not be not closed at all for Easter. Easter falls this year on April 4th. But the Cambridge schools are scheduled to be open on both ‘Good Friday’ and ‘Easter Monday.’

Instead the Cambridge schools are closed from April 18 through April 22 for "Spring Vacation."

You would think the "communications coordinator for the school system" would know that. You would also think the Boston Globe might fact check the school’s claims.

But, again, we kid.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, October 11th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

31 Responses to “Cambridge Schools Get A Muslim Holiday”

  1. Mithrandir says:

    We need a holiday for the 2% of Muslims that are mischaracterized by the 98% who are or support terrorism.

    Liberals make excuses to do whatever they want, the percentage of people who benefit is not important. Madison public school threw out school names of prominent white people, and put in multicultural names, so that the .005% Native American population could be represented.

  2. jambon says:

    Cambridge is forsaken. For anyone who’s heard it’s wacky there but thought its characterization was all blown out of proportion, think again.

    I lived there for a while and was glad to move away.

    All that once was good and clean there is now desecrated and ruined.

    I don’t understand why anyone would want to visit (or live near) the Boston area.

    • artboyusa says:

      No way Cambridge is forsaken – Cambridge is brilliant! Excellent book and record stores, terrific art at the Fogg Museum, good eats at Charlie’s Kitchen, delicious homebrews at John Harvard’s…Cambridge is practically perfect in every way except, er, for some of the people who live there. Who are crazy. I’ll be visiting for two weeks in November; just in time to toast the results of the elections in some of that delicious beer I just mentioned.

  3. mr_bill says:

    You make a good point Steve. The liberals and anti-Christians have spent so much time de-Christian-ifying Christian Holy-days, it should make their task of promoting moslem “holidays” more difficult. Everytime somebody says Merry Christmas in public, the ACLU is there with a team of lawyers to file a lawsuit. Why should islam be any different? Make them play by their own rules. Christians can’t have Christian Holidays (of if they do, they can’t call them what they are “Winter holiday” “Spring Holiday”), but moslems can have moslem holidays (and by name)? I guess some are just more equal than others. I declare shenanigans!

  4. Right of the People says:

    Don’t forget the Cambridge cops are RACIST, Barry told us so.

  5. Adam Moreira says:

    This is a case where Christians should sue and say: It’s clear that they’re getting days off for their religion, why not us? And this time, refuse to settle.

    They obviously can’t close for Eid al-Fitr, as it won’t fall during the school year again until the 2020s.

    (BTW, I do see Good Friday closing as a a Christian holiday and not secular; as I see it, schools should not be closed for any religious holidays whatsoever.)

    No closing for Christian holidays, Jewish holidays, or Muslim holidays; if it were me, it would be 39 straight weeks of instruction with December 24-January 1 and the last week of March off). Start September 1, and the only other days off should be Labor Day, Veterans’ Day, Thanksgiving, the day after Thanksgiving, and Memorial Day (if the school year has not yet completed).

    Anyone wants a religious holiday off? Public schools are not for you, and I don’t care what faith you are.

    • mr_bill says:

      We (Americans) have traditionally made accomodations for Christian holidays because the United States is a Christian nation, was founded by Christians on Christian values, and continues to be populated in the majority by Christians, despite recent efforts to Orwellianize that part of our collective history. I see this as simply an attempt for the extreme minority to antagonize Christians at best, and a continuing act of stealth jihad, at worst.

      Were it a benign and benevolent religion petitioning for this vacation, say for instance, Bhuddism, I doubt it would receive much of a reaction from most people. islam (I never capitalize it’s title) is not a benign or benevolent religion. To wit: name one charitable islamic organization that compares with the Salvation Army, St. Vincent de Paul Society, etc., and aides people of all faiths, not just moslems. We’ll ignore the copious violence that seems endemic within islamic theocratic states and proliforates where islam is the preference of the majority, and look simply to good deeds accomplished.

      That being said, my child attends a private school. Among the many reasons I chose that particular school is the fact that this particular school observes Christian holidays, although I admit it is not a religiously affiliated school.

    • Astravogel says:

      You forgot the first day of deer season…

    • Adam Moreira says:

      @mr_bill – I would not do it even for Buddhism, let alone Islam. Christmas has become secularized, but that’s different.

      You send your children to private school, and that’s your business.

  6. proreason says:

    Just when you think Massachusetts can’t get any more bizarre….

  7. Chase says:

    The Left and anyone sympathetic to any one of their causes is all about removing religion from the public discourse, driving it to the fringe, behind the woodwork, and under the carpet. They don’t want any moral voice, and shaking heads, pointing fingers or anything between them and power. Power to have at their darkest vices.

    Power to rape and pillage, to subjugate, to hoard, and to do so without limitations or societal consequence. They think they can break it all down and exile the conscience.

    It comes down to the basest of human weaknesses and devilish behavior – in the end, it’s all about the children.

  8. Chase says:

    Philosophy without religion gave us what? Nietzsche, Rousseau, Hegel, a bunch of others, oh, and Chomsky…..

    As someone here said some time back, “Evil may have been done in the name of Christ, but I assure you He had no hand in it.”

    Religion, as taught by Adam to his children, is the foundation for any of the solid arguments, er, questions, posed by the philosophers.

    • tranquil.night says:

      Powerful points, Chase, especially regarding it all being about the children. At all levels of society and from many fronts they’ll take any concocted opportunity to supplant the traditional Christian-American values of family and individual exceptionalism to those of the collectivist nanny state, which is whatever mindless self indulgence or god you desire to worship for as long as fate keeps your miserable existence on this dumb rock. I completely support your argument and am honored that quote stuck with you. Sail on.

    • Petronius says:

      “Philosophy without religion gave us what? Nietzsche ….”

      I hope that we may be cautious before dismissing the philosophers who did not embrace a religious perspective. Otherwise we must discard much that is valuable in the Western tradition and in conservatism.

      In addition to Nietzsche, we would have to discard all of the philosophers of the ancient world, including Aristotle, Socrates, Plato, Marcus Aurelius, Cicero, the Stoics, et al. down to and including the pagans and the Havamal. We would then have to discard the libertarians, including Ayn Rand and the objectivists. Also the Austrian school of economics. Also the evolutionary, biological, and psychological conservatives from Darwin on down to Konrad Lorenz, Carleton Coon, Sir Arthur Keith, Robert Ardrey, Edward Wilson, Raymond Cattell, Charles Murray, and Arthur Jensen. Also the neocons, with their affinity for multiculturalism and internationalism. And even those paleoconservatives or traditionalist conservatives, who, while they may have respected Christianity, did not make their religion a basis for their conservatism –– David Hume, for one important example.

      We might also consider that at a very early stage the Greek philosophies –– Skepticism, Epictetus, the Stoics, and the Epicurians –– permeated and colored Christian theology through and through. Christian theology borrowed many of its doctrines directly from the Greek philosophers.

      Approaching the subject from the other end, we might also consider Islam as a religion in opposition to the Western tradition. Or Marxism / Liberalism as a type of secular religion. Thus :

      •  Karl Marx is its prophet
      •  Lenin, Stalin, and Mao are its high priests or pontiffs
      •  Das Kapital is its Bible
      •  capitalism is its devil
      • capitalists are the devil’s minions
      •  the proletariat are the believers
      •  the classless society is the kingdom to come, and
      •  mankind en masse is its god.

      Finally, we might consider that the anti-philosophical attitude may find its roots in a school of Greek philosophy called Skepticism.

      Social conservatives and Christian conservatives are one branch of the conservative family. However, they are only one branch. It’s a big family, and we all need to get along in order to overcome our common enemy who is daily cramming his ideology down all of our throats full-throttle. Tolerance for other conservative traditions ought to be our rule.

    • proreason says:

      “Social conservatives and Christian conservatives are one branch of the conservative family”


      And this reminds me of something that has been on my mind since it became clear November is secure.

      Of course, we all know that is only the first step, and that it is critical that the new Congress oppose and obstuct Obamy in lockstep every step of the way.

      But immediately, everyone’s attention will also turn to 2012, because without the White House in that year, the marxists will complete their triumph, barring armed revolt.

      So, with that in mind, my view is that all conservatives have to keep Reagan’s rule at top of mind. Speak no evil of fellow conservatives.

      In ordinary circumstances, that isn’t as important, but these are far from ordinary circumstances. No matter who wins the Republican nomination, that person will be infinitely better than the criminal in the White House today.

      Already, I hear sniping at this candidate and that one, not so much here, but on other web-sites. Please please stop. The conservative revolution requires maximum enthusiasm and commitment in 2012.

      This time, we will be so much wiser to consistently say….”candidate Q isn’t my first choice for reasons x and y. But, of course, if Q wins, I will be 1000% behind him”. There should be no nose-holding, no drunk-voting, no personal attacks on any Republican candidate. The libwit “journalist” army will do plenty on that front.

      Again, the mission above all others must be to take back the White House. Without that, the nation will crumble.

      And that is even more true if the Republican victor is a Rino. Unless you think that 4 more years of the Moron is just what the country needs.

  9. untrainable says:

    Philosophy without religion is a mental exercise in secular elitist BS. As long as liberals can “sound” intelligent, they are satisfied, even if what “sounds” intelligent is obvious tripe.

    • beautyofreason says:

      I’m reminded of Jean Paul Sartre, that big name philosopher who met with the butcher Che Guevara and praised Mao Zedong. I’m also reminded of the Marquis de Sade’s 120 Days of Sodom which extols child rape and murder, a book that is somehow championed as an intellectual piece against fascism – though it is little more than the celebration of pedophilia and torture with a cover story.

      Though I’m not religious myself I do see a lack of moral insight by some philosophers. Their works feel elitist and superficial; a few openly embrace evil. Remember when Noam Chomsky downplayed the genocide in Pol Pot’s Cambodia?

      Don’t get me wrong; I love reading philosophers and I do not care whether their opinion stems from religion or other sources – but I always view their ideas with skepticism. Sometimes they are so open minded that their brains fall out and they cannot grasp basic moral concerns.

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      And thus you have the current cabal of socialists in power in this nation where “what sounds intelligent” passes for what is intelligent. Back when schools taught such things, I had excellent teachers who provided cases of where a well-spoken or well-written explanation was given, followed by a poorly-worded one. I remember doing this exercise in two separate school years. The poorly worded one was categorically classified as the incorrect answer. But it was, in fact, the right answer while the complicated, 5-dollar word answer was checked as the correct answer. Under careful scrutiny, it was revealed to be very incorrect. Sadly, I do not remember the subject matter but it was so very basic in the “How do you dig a hole?” category that I forget the subject of the question.

      Both teachers had great fun with it. I admit I got it wrong both years but it taught me a lesson: Content vs style is what’s important.

  10. Natural Born Citizen says:

    Is this the same school system that went on a field trip to a Mosque and encouraged Christan and Jewish kids to pray to Allah? Whats next a 9/11 holiday and a trip to the Ground Zero Mosque? What a bunch of morons. Apparently politicians are not the only ones needing reform.

    • Adam Moreira says:

      Different one actually; it was in Wellesley, MA.

      As I see it, there should be no religious holidays celebrated by public schools…only the national secular holidays.

  11. Rusty Shackleford says:

    “At a time when I think the Muslim population is being characterized with a broad brush in a negative way,…”

    Only way to paint it. “Peace-loving muslim” is like saying “Vegetarian Crocodile”.

    • beautyofreason says:

      I don’t know Rusty; I think there is a large vegetarian crocodile on display in a booth at my county fair. Of course, he is coated in plastic…

  12. morven says:

    Brilliant expose of the double-standards in western countries. Britain is going the same way, Canada too.
    BTW, if you want to know where it all ends up, look at the latest story on Ross’s Right Angle, where an Indonesian local council is planning to exile dissident Muslim Ahmadiyah people to a desert island, ‘for their own safety!” Really, no joke!

  13. Chase says:

    @Tranquil –

    When I was speaking about the children, it was not just as to their future and limited opportunities – I was speaking, in subtlety to quell the revulsion, as to the children’s safety and sanity, vs the ultimate goal of the depraved, and the targets of their diminished morals, degrading of laws, conscience and inhibitions, which is unprohibited access to exploit children.

    Also, I share another favorite quote – “God so loved the world He did not send a committee.”


    This nation’s founding and fabric of its laws, traditions, morals, and yes, objectives – the pursuit of happiness (in opposition to the weight, guilt, burdens and consequences of sin, depravity, and associated regulations on liberty as imposed by intolerant government enforced behaviors) are based on religious belief and inherent basic values, of the sweetness of truth and light. As unarguable facts, what good does it to wipe away those traditions and that legacy, for secular days off?

    Doing so, we end up like the Brits, which although I like their idea of having bank holidays when the weather is nice (May and August) vs a couple of ours in the bleak of Winter, with having no anchors for our laws, traditions, and thereby become so milquetoast and without principles that it remains to be seen, issue by issue, what they stand for, or how much further into the abyss they can slip without disappearing.

    I can only guess that your principles then are established by the winds or the shifting sands – whatever feels good, and is nicely multicultural, tolerant, progressive, secular, and inoffensive to those who are small of mind and bereft of conscience or principle themselves who are left only seeking to find offense and gain some legitimacy through their “victimization.”

    “Tolerance becomes a crime when applied to evil” Thomas Mann

    • Adam Moreira says:

      Nope—my principles are established in the principle of patriotism over religion. If one wants religious days off for children (or in college), send the children to a religious school (or college). To that end, however, there should be tax credits to deduct the cost of that education (primary and secondary) from the property tax bill.

      As for schools, if the children aren’t arriving at school with values completely ingrained in them – that’s failure – on the part of the parents.

      But you can’t favor one religion over another…for instance, in most public schools, one gets the High Holy Days off, but not most Catholic holidays (except for Easter); my thought is all or none, and I would choose none.

  14. JaneLovesJesus says:

    Well, correction: Easter 2011 is not Apr.4 it’s the 24, so they are, in fact, closed Good Friday. But I totally agree with the larger point. Sharia here we come. And where I live; Spring Break & Easter do not co-incide.

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