Islamic ‘instruction’ in our public schools

The Thomas More Law Center, which is a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, has filed (01/27/16) a federal lawsuit on behalf of former marine John Kevin Wood and his wife, Melissa, who refused to allow their teenage daughter to be subjected to Islamic “indoctrination and propaganda” in her high school world history class.  The lawsuit was filed against the Charles County Public Schools, the Board of Education, and the principal and vice principal of La Plata High School, located in La Plata, Maryland.

The Woods’ daughter was forced to profess and to write out the Shahada in worksheets and quizzes. The Shahada is the Islamic Creed, “There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.” For non-Muslims, reciting the statement is sufficient to convert one to Islam. Moreover, the second part of the statement, “Muhammad is the messenger of Allah,” signifies the person has accepted Muhammad as their spiritual leader. The teenager was also required to memorize and recite the Five Pillars of Islam.

Among the “facts” that the students had to learn are the following:

Islam, at heart, is a peaceful religion

To Muslims, Allah is the same God that is worshiped in Christianity and Judaism.

Radical Islamist fundamentalists are opposed to Western civilization’s way of life and imperialist pursuits

Jihad: a holy war waged on the behalf of Islam as a religious duty; a personal struggle in devotion to Islam, especially involving spiritual discipline

No where (sic) in the Koran does it say you will go to paradise if you martyr yourself with a suicide bomb.

To comment on these items:

Islam, at heart, is a peaceful religion

True if the pre-Medina (Muhammad’s first battlefield victory) verses are cited:

Invite (all) to the way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for thy Lord knoweth best, who have strayed from His path, and who receive guidance. (16:125)

Nor can goodness and evil be equal. Repel (evil) with what is better. (41:34)

False if post-Medina verses are cited:

But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practice regular charity, then open the way for them: for God is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. (9:5)

Fight those who believe not in God nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by God and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book (Christians and Jews), until they pay the jizya [tribute] with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. (9:29).

Historically, blatantly false.

In fact, right after Mohammed’s death (632), Caliph Omar launched the Muslim conquests.  Syria was conquered around 636, Egypt 641, Mesopotamia and the Persian Empire 650.  By the early 8th century, all of north Africa and Spain to the west, and the lands of central Asia and India to the east, were also brought under Islamic suzerainty.  All by the sword.  The laughable disclaimer is that all were first offered conversion to Islam or dhimmitude (jizya), and therefore they chose to be conquered.

To Muslims, Allah is the same God that is worshiped in Christianity and Judaism.

This can be given the short shrift.  Even the “fact” sheet from La Plata gets it right:

Islam: submission to the will of Allah

Muslim: one who has submitted

But the real problem in high school education is the presumption that students should be educated (indoctrinated?) by being given the Board of Education version of the most accurate distilled truth – that students can’t handle controversy.  How about being given the pros and cons of claims made about culture and history?  Fine.  Present the claim that Islam is the religion of peace.  But then give the arguments pro and con.  The idea that a fair-minded committee should feed the students the final distilled version of the truth is a recipe for indoctrination, not education.

To end on a humorous if woeful note, one of the positive points about Islam the students at La Plata high school had to “learn” is the following:

Islam is a peaceful religion and they treated conquered nations with kindness and respect.

If you experience technical problems, please write to