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Pro and Con Arguments about Prayers in Public Schools 
 
by Laura Evans May 20, 2005

The United States has not experienced any where near a collapse in moral values as those described by people who support praying in public schools. Yes, there has been an increase in the percentages of divorce from 1960 to 1990. However, this is probably more of a reflection of the growing economic independence of women than a "moral decline." Actually, the divorce rate was higher in post-World War II 1950, a period of national prosperity, than in 1960. In 1950, the divorce rate per 1000 married women over fifteen was 10.3 versus the 9.2 rate in 1960. Prayer was allowed in public schools both in 1950 and 1960. In addition, the crime rates are vastly overstated. For example, the murder rate and non-negligent manslaughter rate per 100,000 has increased from 4.6 to 5.6 from 1963 to 2002, an increase of slightly over 1.1% per year. Much of this increase, and increases in other crime rates, can be explained by better reporting and record keeping and, as in the case of rape, by changes in social outlook through the years.

  • The Supreme Court Never Outlawed Prayer in School

    The Supreme Court's decisions from 1962 to this day have never banned students from praying, reading the Old Testament, reading the New Testament, reading the Koran, or any reading information relating to any religion during students' free time. The decisions have not banned classes that study religions, compare religions, or discuss religions in an objective, informative manner. According to the Supreme Courts' decisions, religious upbringing is the responsibility of parents and family, not the schools and the government. 

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