Children at the Rufford primary school in Lye, England are the most recent victims of a pernicious movement of global reach that is sapping local communities of their cultural identity. All under the saintly guise of diversity and multi-culturalism!
According to multiple reports out of England, officials in this West Midlands school have required teachers and students to don Muslim dress for a belated celebration of Eid, the end of Ramadan. The school’s program also seeks to involve parents in its celebration of diversity by hosting an afternoon mothers-only gathering, keeping in Muslim tradition that married women should not mix with other men.
Just two members of the school staff — a part-time teacher and a teaching assistant — are Muslim. The students are predominantly Christian.
The Daily Mail reported that all 41 teachers and 257 students complied with the dress code.
Not all were happy. A relative of one of the staff members told the Sun newspaper, “Staff have got to go along with it — or let’s face it, they would be branded racist. Who would put their job on the line? They have been told they have to embrace the day to show their diversity. But they are not all happy.”
This story will not get much play in the United States because the mainstream media instinctively recoils from stories that may call into question the can-do-no-wrong tags of diversity, pluralism, and multi-culturalism. In these turbulent times, they would argue, anything that promotes tolerance has got to be good.
And I would agree. But I would add that there is nothing tolerant about imposing a minority group’s traditions and beliefs on the majority. There is nothing tolerant about glorifying all expressions of culture except one’s own. There is nothing tolerant about cowing Christians into acting like Muslims, intimidating Jews into acting like Christians, scaring Muslims into acting like Westerners, or even worse, suggesting that we should all be nothing.
This, I would say, is a sign of a dictatorship of cultural relativism. Such absurdity has nothing to do with tolerance.
What will become of the United States, as the world continues to get smaller, and we come face to face with peoples who refuse to let go of their cultural identity and simultaneously don’t respect ours? If we continue to buy into the ideology of cultural relativism, the question itself will be mute, because America as we know it will cease to exist.
The happier alternative involves unabashedly promoting and celebrating our nation’s cultural and religious heritage, respecting minority expressions in as much as they promote the common good for society, and demanding the same rights for Americans abroad as we provide to foreigners at home.
God bless, Father Jonathan
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