The Religious Opt Out for Masks (Homeschool Co-op Edition)

I recently saw where the superintendent of Miami-Dade(?) schools was imposing a district-wide indoor mask mandate in defiance of DeSantis, mentioning that it was a constitutional issue for public schools to provide a safe environment. That made good sense.

2 Likes

Does anyone remember Linus waiting for the Great Pumpkin? He had the sincerest pumpkin patch.

2 Likes

To the frustration of many of us here, you can’t argue someone into having sound judgment, a sense of discernment and proportion in applying what the Scriptures teach. This is a perfect example of what the absence of those virtues looks like.

I’m not a lawyer, and I don’t play one on tv. However, I do know that not everything that claims to be a legal document or legal argument actually is one. Just because these parents claim that this letter is enough to get them a legal exemption doesn’t mean that it is.
If you are being asked/demanded to sign this, be clear that you don’t believe the contents are true, theologically sound, logical or of any legal weight. And hand it back.

1 Like

Interesting that some schools are getting around mask mandate bans simply by changing their dress codes. I don’t know that you can get a religious exemption from wearing something a dress code requires. Usually they have written in that dress codes flex to accommodate religiously symbolic dress like yarmulke’s or hijabs if for example, hats are not allowed in buildings or more coverage for those who religiously object to the modesty of gym uniforms. But good luck arguing that NOT wearing something required is a religious symbol. You don’t get to say “My religion prohibits the wearing of a shirt.”

And out driving today I saw three high school students on the sidewalk walking home with their friends and two were still wearing their masks like responsible careful people. They did not appear to be suffering psychological duress.

6 Likes

In the Southeast, Georgia is now seeing its highest number of hospitalizations since the start of the pandemic,

Mask mandates should have been imposed, and long before now.

1 Like

The collective we really blew it last year and we still are. Americans in the US – and maybe especially Evangelicals – have a really poor concept of freedom and what it requires of each of us against a common enemy.

4 Likes

Matthew, concerning the document you posted, I understand how parents could feel that way.

Christians should take reasonable precautions.

Also, I suspect many people overestimate the health impacts of COVID on children, and the health impacts are relevant to the discussion.

I was surprised this morning reading the New York Times concerning the number of children who have died in the US due to the disease, about 500–most of them teenagers.

This fact, although not mentioned in the document, may have been a factor in its development.

Or not. I suspect we have way more to learn about the long term effects on children… and everyone else. Why are we playing falsely noble games with children’s lives (and everyone else’s) in the name of freedom?
 

1 Like

I suspect there are long-term effects to children of the remote learning, masks, isolation, and fear.

Different people will balance and trade-off these downsides in different ways.

The question may boil down to who is better at and ultimately responsible for the health of an individual child: a government making blanket decisions for all children or the parents who live with and love the individual children?

Duh. If things had been taken care of properly last year, in federal and state policy and from the pulpit, we wouldn’t be as bad off as we are now with all the bogus my freedom pride.
 

Mandated vaccines would have worked well, and still will help.

Do you remember iron lungs in hospitals? I do and you’re old enough, and maybe you’ve had a polio vaccine??

2 Likes

There isn’t supposed to be such a distinction, the government enacts policies that are meant to best support the people in our homes. Unfortunately, not all children have the same blanketed care and resources to keep them safe from a disease or from spreading it to others, and there is much difficulty in creating and enforcing policies that help the most. Our histories of vaccinating our children presently as well as over the past couple of centuries, plus all of the health data, have shown that a very effective “blanket” way to care for the population is through vaccination. So if that’s what the question gets boiled down to, there must be a better question out there.

3 Likes

I agree, Paige, that vaccines are valuable and important.

If you thought that I was trying to say something negative about vaccines, I don’t know why,

I thought the topic of the thread was masks. I will go back and read the opening post again.

1 Like

I apologize, I don’t mean to assume your stance is anti-vaccine. I was latched on to your question about the either-or nature of who makes decisions for our children, because so much is framed this way and breaking through the division of the spectrum is difficult.

2 Likes

If there had been masks mandated and exemplified last year instead of politicized and identified with ‘freedom’ and machismo, we would be way better off today, too.

2 Likes

You are correct, and I definitely have religious exemptions for masks and vaccines on the mind!

Before this is over, there will be parents who will very painfully wish they had supported universal masking in schools, and strenuously.

We [used to :roll_eyes:] trust government to have access to experts that we do not and make blanket recommendations for public health and safety. To deviate from that and politicize it is foolish in the extreme and in effect promoting anarchy.

Now everyone is an “expert” thanks to the Internet and social media.

My sister-in-law told my wife and I that we were taking the mark of the beast by getting vaccinated. She literally used this line of argumentation: “I’ve watched twelve different videos on Youtube about this.” I kid you not. This is the extent of some people’s “research”.

Edit: I should note that there are experts on Youtube and that there is valuable information that can be gleaned there. But I can assure you that the videos she was watching weren’t put out by the CDC.

2 Likes

A woman who used to be a dear friend is a conspiracist. Her family and friends have been severely affected. :disappointed_relieved: She’s been kicked off Facebook at least twice, I think, and all her email to me, multiple per day, goes to spam because every one has a link, most to bitchute or YouTube.

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

This is a place for gracious dialogue about science and faith. Please read our FAQ/Guidelines before posting.