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Saturday, January 24, 2009


I have been a harsh critic of the ACLU in the past and I will be a harsh critic of the ACLU in the future. But they finally got one thing right...wait, strike that...they finally got one thing consistent.

The ACLU has filed a lawsuit against the Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy claiming the charter school runs roughshod over the line that separates church and state. MPR:

    TiZA, as the school is known, serves mostly immigrant children, many of them from Muslim countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. And it makes no apologies for catering to Muslims.

    Arabic language classes are offered and school leaders note how important parents find it to have time set aside for Muslim prayer - and that time is optional.

    But the ACLU claims that lost classroom time is never made up. The federal lawsuit also questions the relationship between the academy and its charter school sponsor, California-based Islamic Relief USA.

    It claims a prayer is illegally posted at the school's entrance and it questions the school's dress code, which prohibits girls from wearing short sleeves per Muslim clothing rules. And the suit notes that school buses don't pick up kids until an hour after class ends, with the gap being filled with a Muslim studies program that most kids are enrolled in.

    "This is in many respects - almost all respects - a religious school, like a private religious school, except for one key thing: There's state money going in there," according to Chuck Samuelson, the ACLU's executive director.

    There would be no lawsuit if TiZA were private, he says. But TiZA gets tax money, $3.8 million this year, which changes the ballgame.

    "If they want to be a private school, then that's fine. But then they have to give up state money and if they want the state money, then they have to behave as a public school does."

    The lawsuit also asks the school to give back a pro-rated refund to the state.

Read the MPR link for the rest of the story.

Way to go, Chuckie al-Samuelson...hopping on the bandwagon late, as usual. Well, late is better than never. I will give credit where credit is due regarding the TiZA school and the ACLU finally applying the same standard they've used in eliminating any inference of religion of Christianity, Judaism or any other denomination(s) and religious activity in other schools funded by taxpayers.

Additional information and background on TiZA by clicking on the TiZA Label at the bottom of this post.

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Looks like someone is going to lose their head over this one.
Molson, I'm sure there's no pun intended in your comment. ;-)
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