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Editorial Missed Point on School Photo Flap

November 23, 2003

Re "Students Strike Selfish Pose," Editorial, Nov. 15:

One can be forgiven, after reading your editorial on the lawsuit filed by members of the Brothers and Sisters in Christ club at Fountain Valley High School, for thinking that The Times has a bit of an anti-Christian attitude.

The editorial describes the club's members pejoratively, likening them to a "thwarted 2-year-old" and characterizing them as "seething" because they were not "given their way."

The club members' and their parents' reaction to the school's refusal to let certain members pose for the class picture as they wanted -- in the front, standing side by side so that their T-shirts spelled out Christian messages is called a "snit."

Why does The Times roundly criticize the club members' actions? After all, multiple areas of constitutional law are involved here: the religion clauses of the 1st Amendment and possibly the right to free speech. A disagreement over such issues of law hardly seems a "snit."

What if, instead of the Brothers and Sisters for Christ, it had been a group of Muslim students who had decided that they pose for the class picture by standing in front wearing T-shirts that spelled out the message, "Allahu Akbar" (God is great)?

Would The Times level a similar degree of criticism toward the Muslim students?

Jeremy Jung

Buena Park

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