By Ellen Burgess
“Merry Christmas! Happy Hanukkah!” These few phrases are acceptable to say, however, playing any religious holiday music or performing any festivities surrounding a religious holiday is not allowed in school, in the hopes of remaining politically correct.
Unfortunately for students, the school’s intolerance for music or other festivities is too strict throughout the holiday season.
Holiday phrases are acceptable to say, but if the chorus tries to sing music specifically written about Christmas or another individual winter holiday, the school will not allow it to be done without incorporating another. Certain activities such as decorating lockers or performing religious festivities are also not acceptable.
The school is public, meaning it is unacceptable to teach a specific religion; however, when holiday music is played, there is no intention to teach the specific religion, and students understand that.
The school is also too strict about not allowing students to only recognize a single holiday. Although students are allowed to wear and represent their individual beliefs, students must also recognize that there is more than just one religious holiday. This should not be mandatory, as it does not bother many students.
“I don’t really care about people saying ‘Merry Christmas’ all the time; it’s not like it offends me,” Jewish junior Daria Shnider, said.
Singing religious songs is also a tradition that should not be considered breaking the school rules. If the chorus would like to sing a song about Christmas, that song should be allowed because students of other religions do not mind the music.
Assistant Principal Paul Murphy said that there can be “no religious songs because not everyone is Christian.”
Students of other religions do not have a preference of whether other students do or do not recognize their own religious holiday.
“It can be funny and annoying at the same time, but it doesn’t bother me as much as the school portrays it to,” Shnider said.
Students realize that there are very different religious beliefs throughout the school and that their specific religion is not always the most widely celebrated. This does not harm or affect students in any way.
As long as a specific religion is not being advocated during the holiday season, there should be no reason to remain politically correct in school.