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syz's avatar

How expansive is your acceptance of religion?

Asked by syz (35649points) September 16th, 2010

Today’s news contains a story about a North Carolina teen that contends that she should not be suspend from school because her nose stud is an expression of her faith. If you support freedom of religion, does that necessitate the support of every religion? Or do you draw the line somewhere? How do you determine that line?

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22 Answers

Seek's avatar

It’s not one of the most ridiculous things I’ve heard, but nowhere on that site does it mention a deity, or anything other than “our right to body modification”. It appears to be a statement of anarchy hiding behind religious protection laws. Which is a hilarious contradiction.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

My acceptance of religion mirrors my abhorrence of it. That is, I loathe it and accept it (in others) equally.

What I find harder to accept is blanket policies by bureaucratic school administrators (and other petty tyrants) who “have to make and enforce policy”, no matter the reason. What’s the compelling reason for the school’s policy, I wonder?

Yes, the girl and her mother are crackpots, but so what?

Dewey420's avatar

“Church of Body Modification” lol nice

syz's avatar

So if there is no deity, then is it a philosophy? Who decides what’s a religion, what’s a philosophy, and what’s culture? Does belief = religion? What about Buddhism, Jain, and other ‘religions’ that have no central deity?

cazzie's avatar

HOW can a public school suspend a kid for doing something they have a right to do? A minor has the right to a piercing or a tattoo if they have parental consent. I can’t understand what legal right a PUBLIC school has to make this a punishable offence.

Religion or not, it’s not illegal. If she’s in sports, it has to be removed for safety, but other than that… what’s the big blooming deal?

syz's avatar

@cazzie That’s a whole other discussion. Do you think her faith qualifies as a religion?

Dewey420's avatar

@cazzie what you said made me think of some basketball player getting surgical modifications of spikes on his/her elbow and forarms. That would be awesome.

Qingu's avatar

I prefer a narrower definition of religion, just for clarity’s sake. I don’t think something counts as a religion unless it involves worshiping a deity with an active interest in human history and/or morality.

That said, I don’t think an ideology deserves special protection just because its followers claim to believe in a deity.

Seaofclouds's avatar

I’m torn on this. If the school has a dress code or policy that forbids facial piercings, perhaps the girl and her mother need to find a school that does not have that policy. I understand the aspect of following their faith (if it is indeed a religion) and not being denied the right, but I don’t really see why it can’t be taken out for school. It’s against the policy, plain and simple. Schools have all kinds of dress code and appearance policies.

Now, is this really a religion? I don’t know and I’m glad I’m not the one that will have to make that decision.

Cruiser's avatar

I am not one to judge anyone for anything they believe in even a “church” such as this. What I do question is our societies definition of a church and or religion that even a group such as this qualifies for tax exempt status. I mean for heavens sake, on their website they show people hanging from meat hooks as part of their rituals?? Again I am not one to judge what they do but I do question our government affording them a free ride for that!!

cazzie's avatar

@syz I don’t think ‘religious beliefs’ call for extra and special treatment of anyone. So, if the DMV says take off your head scarf, take it off. IF the French government says no head scarves OR crucifixes in any school… you better take them off. If the European Union says that female genital mutilation is against the law, you’d better leave your daughter’s private parts alone.

This girl has a piercing. If she said it was her legal and CONSTITUTIONAL right to have it, I’d support her. The religious thing is silly.

Dewey420's avatar

@Cruiser “for heavens sake, they show people hanging from meat hooks as part of their rituals”

sounds fun to me lol

Cruiser's avatar

@Dewey420 You know….after thinking about it, how much different is that really from nailing people to a cross???

jaytkay's avatar

What I do question is our societies definition of a church and or religion that even a group such as this qualifies for tax exempt status

Until very recently I believed tax exempting churches was unconstitutional, because it requires the government to decide what is or is not a religion.

But it was pointed out to me that churches are tax-exempt as non-profits, just like a museum or private school.

JustmeAman's avatar

When is enough going to be enough? Are we as a society degrading to the point of chaos? Just a thought here and I made a point on another question about this. Are we pushing individual rights beyond a point that we become a lawless, unanswerable, do anything and everything society? Is not having any rules going to help our nation or in time is it going to hurt it? It is getting so ridiculous; kids can’t sing a song because one objects. Because of one or two that complain rules are made for the whole. When do we as a society quit relying on the government to make all our decisions? It is now beyond a joke and it is becoming a downfall of our society and way of life.

thekoukoureport's avatar

Tax em all and let the IRS sort them out.
Funny we cry for the freedom of OUR religion in the constitution.
Body modification and tatooing have been tribal rituals since humans walked upright.
Freedom is a very sticky subject when it flies in the face of ones beliefs.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Good for her – so many dumb things, imo, are ‘expressions of people’s religious beliefs’ but this people laugh at? Here’s my take on things: I don’t need a religion or a deity but recognize that others simply do and their religion can be as loopy as they want as long as they don’t systematically harm people because of what they believe must be done for the beliefs – then my tolerance for this idiocy stops.

Scooby's avatar

Live & let live! :-/ what she said! @Simone_De_Beauvoir

ratboy's avatar

Seems like a rather mild mark of faith compared to, say, circumcision.

fundevogel's avatar

Honestly, I think the real problem here is that students are getting suspended over dress code. It’s stupid. Let’s look at the facts.

1. Noserings are irrelevant to learning.

2. Being suspended prevents learning.


Suspending a student for wearing a nosering does greater harm to education than not suspending a student with a nosering. Thus we should not suspend the student for wearing a nosering.

It’s pretty simple.

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