Monday, April 14, 2008

My Letter

April 15, 2008

Dr. Terry Bergeson
State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Old Capitol Building
600 South Washington
Olympia, WA 98504

Dear Dr. Bergeson:

Yesterday, I watched the evening news which included a story about the Seeds of Compassion children's event at the Key Arena featuring the Dalai Lama. The story explained how you encouraged local public schools to take advantage of this opportunity and take their students to see the Dalai Lama speak. You mentioned how Buddhist children would like the opportunity to see their spiritual leader and how it was a great opportunity for all children. I agree with your assessment and applaud your willingness to go against the often tauted "separation of church and state" when it comes to mixing religious instruction and public schooling.

Now that you have opened the doors to religious instruction (or instruction by religious leaders) using public time and funds, I believe you have an obligation to give equal time and funds to encouraging the other major world religions. These would include, but not be limited to, Hinduism, Islam, Catholicism, Mormonism, and Christianity. I'm sure the Pope, Billy Graham, Thomas Monson, and other religious leaders will be thrilled to receive your invitation to come speak to Washington public school students about nonreligious topics such as compassion.

Thank you for your courage in stepping out of the box to allow all students equal opportunity to see their religious leader speak and to learn about each of the major world religions as part of their public school experience. I look forward to your announcement that public school students will be visiting with these other religious leaders in the near future.


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Unknown said...

Very well worded!! Amen!!

Anonymous said...

Very well said!

Oh, thanks for letting me know about how my comments appeared! Had no idea! :)

Anonymous said...

I enjoy reading your blog. This letter was an encouragement to me to be bold in our faith and speak up! I will be interested in hearing (reading) the response that you will receive. Thank you for writing that to the Superintendent. Bless you.

Deb said...

Great letter! Please keep us updated on any response(s) you get.