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Parents sue California public school system for ‘unconstitutional’ chant to Aztec deities


Three Californian parents have filed a lawsuit against the state Department of Education over a song to Aztec deities included in a new ethnic studies curriculum.

According to the lawsuit, which was filed earlier this month, the program asks students to repeat “the affirmation of In Lak Ech” – a song that invokes Aztec gods who were worshiped through human sacrifice.

The Thomas More Society – a conservative law firm that represents all three parents – described the curriculum model as “patently unconstitutional” in court documents.

The new ethnic studies curriculum was approved for teaching in all California public schools earlier this year. He will teach the state’s students the “stories, struggles and contributions of Asians, Blacks, Latinos and Native Americans”.

Chapter 5 of the program includes a section “Affirmation, chants and energizers” of which chanting to Aztec deities is a part.

The program says of the song: “In Lak Ech translates to you are my other self and relates to our habit of mind, our empathy, but also compassion, interdependence, ecology, love and the mutual respect.”

“The unequivocal promotion of the Aztec gods or deities through repetitive chanting and the affirmation of their symbolic tenets constitutes an illegal government preference for a particular religious practice,” said Frank Xu, president of the Californians for Equal Rights Foundation, in a statement published on The Thomas. No more company website.

Three Californian parents have filed a lawsuit against the state Department of Education over a song to Aztec deities included in a new ethnic studies curriculum. An exhibition of the Aztec god Tezcatlipoca is pictured

The deities referenced in the song would be Tezkatlipoca, Quetzalcoatl, Huitzilopochtli and Xipe Totec.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, Tezkatlipoca was a protean sorcerer who caused the deaths of many Toltecs through his black magic.

During the fifth month of the Aztec solar year, Tezcatlipoca was worshiped in special ceremonies, in which a prisoner of war was taken to a temple where his heart was cut with an obsidian knife.

Thomas More Society special advocate Paul Joanna said in a statement: “The Aztecs have regularly performed horrible and horrific acts for the sole purpose of pacifying and appeasing the very beings that the program’s prayers invoke.

“Our clients have both a religious and a civic objection to Aztec prayer, and they don’t want their children to sing it, be asked or forced to, or risk it. ostracism if they refuse. “

He added, “The constitutions of California and the United States prohibit prayer in public schools. Can you imagine if elements of the Christian faith were offered for inclusion in the public school curriculum? What if a class incorporated prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary, or even the recitation of the Our Father? How would it be received?

The constitution prohibits officials of public schools from leading or facilitating prayer in their official capacities, although students are permitted to pray in private at school as part of their right to free speech and expression. First amendment.

Huitzilopochtli is another deity referenced in the song.  A drawing of the Aztec god is depicted

Huitzilopochtli is another deity referenced in the song. A drawing of the Aztec god is depicted

California Department of Education is targeted in new lawsuit, filed earlier this month

California Department of Education is targeted in new lawsuit, filed earlier this month

In March, the State Board of Education unanimously approved the new ethnic studies curriculum.

The program focuses on “social consciousness” and cultures often overlooked or overlooked in mainstream educational textbooks, such as “African American Studies, Chicana / o / x and Latin / o / x, Native American and Asian American and Islanders. Pacific ”, according to the resources available on the CDE website.

The model curriculum also has a number of goals that students and teachers can achieve together.

Together, classes can “critique the building of empire in history and its relationship to white supremacy, racism, and other forms of power and oppression.”

They can also “challenge racist, fanatic, discriminatory, imperialist / colonial beliefs and practices on many levels” and “connect with past and contemporary social movements that strive for social justice and a fair and democratic society” as students seek to ‘build new possibilities for a society of post-racist and post-systemic racism.’

The expected results with this program include the pursuit of justice, greater inclusion, better understanding of oneself, more empathy for others and the recognition of intersectionality, which is the point of fusion of diverse identities of people. .

In March, the State Board of Education unanimously approved the new ethnic studies curriculum.  Image bank

In March, the State Board of Education unanimously approved the new ethnic studies curriculum. Image bank


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