Monday, April 20, 2009

Judge bans religious song from school

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., April 17 (UPI) -- A federal judge has banned a Florida elementary school from having children sing a country song, "In God We Still Trust," at a school assembly.

The lyrics attack the principle of separation of church and state, U.S. District Judge Harvey Schlesinger said. He issued a preliminary injunction Wednesday against the Webster School in St. Augustine, The Jacksonville Times-Union reported.

While some religious songs can be sung in public schools, "In God We Still Trust" by Diamond Rio is "patently religious and proselytizing," the judge said.

He cited some of the lyrics: "There's no separation. ... We're one nation under Him ... Now there are those among us who want to push Him out and erase His name from everything this country is all about ... Now it's time for all believers to make our voices heard."

The parents of two Webster students filed the lawsuit in March, saying their children were being forced to endorse views they do not share.

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