California parents seeking to have a chant to Aztec gods omitted from a new cultural studies curriculum formally lodged a suit against the state's Department of Education.
In response to their August 26 letter to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction requesting that Aztec prayers be removed from a curriculum going unanswered, Thomas More Society filed a lawsuit on behalf of the "Californians for Equal Rights Foundation," taxpayers, and parents of existing and former students on Friday.
According to the law agency, which sent a statement to The Christian Post (CP), the prayer addresses the deities both by name and by their traditional names in this prayer, which, despite its classification as an "affirmation," acknowledges them as sources of power and wisdom, requests their aid, and expresses gratitude to them.
A claim in the lawsuit states that the "Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum" has been authorized for use in public schools in the state of California, which serves roughly 6 million children in around 10,000 schools. Despite the fact that participation in the program is supposedly optional, several school districts have chosen to include the curriculum into their teaching practices.
Furthermore, the suit added that the curriculum contains an article called "Affirmation, Chants, and Energizers," including the "Affirmation in Lak Ech," which summons five Aztec deities.
According to Paul Jonna, a partner at LiMandri & Jonna LLP and Special Counsel to the Thomas More Society: "Our clients have both a religious and civic objection to the Aztec prayer, and they do not want their children chanting it, being asked or pressured to do so, or risking ostracism if they refuse."
"Under both the California and U.S. constitutions, they have the right to expect all branches of the state government, including the SBE and CDE, to respect this choice. Furthermore, all Californians have the right to expect that tax-supported public schools will not aid or promote this religion," she added.
Frank Xu, President of the Equal Rights Foundation of California stated that the curriculum clearly supports Aztec gods or goddesses by repeating their verbal chants and affirming their symbolic concepts which "constitutes an unlawful government preference toward a particular religious practice."
CP noted that a lot of the material referenced throughout the courses was created by R. Tolteka Cuauhtin, who is also the co-chair of the curriculum. For Cuauhtin, Christians, especially those of European descent, are regarded as the root of evil that must be fought and ultimately ousted.
Using a chart, Cuauhtin claims that white Christians are responsible for "theocide" against indigenous tribes, which includes the death of their deities and the replacement of those deities with the Christian religion.
Investigative journalist Christopher Rufo reported on this problem in the City-Journal in March, claiming that the ultimate objective of Cuauhtin's group is to orchestrate a "countergenocide" against white people.
Rufo wrote that the state's ethnic studies curriculum pushes for the "decolonization" of American culture and raises the religious significance of the Aztecs.
Understandably, this attempt was motivated by the many injustices suffered by indigenous peoples, in which the Christian religion was wrongfully exploited by early colonists to dehumanize indigenous people. Consequently, many natives are still skeptical of the Gospel today. So, in the spirit of Christian love, considerable patience, understanding, and prayer on the part of Christians are needed.