5 Jan 2016

NJ school ends post-9/11 tradition of saying ‘God bless America’ each morning to avoid ACLU lawsuit

 For the can’t-make-this-up file, Glenview Elementary School in Haddon Heights, NJ has agreed to stop having students say “God bless America” after the daily recital of the Pledge of Allegiance in order to avoid a court fight threatened by the ACLU:

The school reportedly started the tradition after 9/11 as a way to honor first responders. From the Courier-Post:
An elementary school’s tradition that began after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has been challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union, the principal said in a letter addressed to parents.
Students at Glenview Elementary School have said the phrase “God bless America” after reciting the Pledge of Allegiance each morning outside before classes begin. But a letter from the ACLU sent last month to the school’s attorneys said that “invoking God’s blessing as a daily ritual is unconstitutional and in violation of the Establishment Clause, since it allegedly promotes religious over non-religious beliefs, especially with young, impressionable children,” according to a letter from Principal Sam Sassano to parents.

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