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Oregon Ban on Religious Clothes for Teachers

Brings people together

by
Ari M. Brostoff
July 17, 2009

Is the Oregon state legislature trying to make peace between the world’s religions? That seems to be the inadvertent effect of a bill under consideration in Salem that would keep in place a law that “prohibit[s] a teacher from wearing religious dress while engaged in the performance of duties as a teacher,” according to The Oregonian. Originally passed nearly a century ago as an anti-Catholic measure, says the paper, it’s now being protested by Sikh and Muslim groups, who want the governor to veto the bill. And what’s one element of their argument? Both Sikh and Muslim leaders have invoked the plight of Jewish teachers prohibited from wearing a yarmulkes or Star of Davids. Such togetherness!

Ari M. Brostoff is Culture Editor at Jewish Currents.

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