OAN’s Abril Elfi
3:21 PM – Saturday, November 11, 2023
A Redmond, Washington Elementary School has canceled their annual Veterans Day assembly and replaced it with a “peace assembly.”
Benjamin Rush Elementary in the Lake Washington School District presents a Veterans Day assembly every year, however, this year they have announced they will be replacing it with a “peace assembly” that will recognize the International Day of Tolerance and will be held on November 15th.
The usual annual assembly included the school choir singing songs such as “It’s a Grand Old Flag,” “This Land is Your Land,” and the national anthem.
However, this year the songs have been replaced for those centered around the assembly’s theme of Tolerance, Acceptance and Kindness. Some of the songs to be performed reportedly are “Live in Peace,” “Peacebuilder Pledge Song,” “Amani Utupe Na Ustawi” and “Namaste.”
According to an unidentified parent of a student at the school, the “peace assembly” appeared in the school’s newsletter on October 29th and November 5th, but it did not explain what it was.
“I was extremely disappointed and yet not surprised,” one student’s father told the press. “For years the Veterans Assembly has been a highlight at the school and one of the few midday assemblies that gathers a fairly large audience of parents to come hear the speakers.”
The father noted that, in recent years, “the school administration has moved strongly away from pride in our traditions and American history.”
He continued arguing that there should be a Veterans Day assembly because “we should be taking the time to show our children and our community that we have brave men and women who are willing to stand up and fight for our freedom and the peace that other places in the world can only dream of.”
A spokesperson for the school spoke to the press and assured that students will still learn about Veterans Day and honor veterans by “watching videos about the sacrifices that veterans have made and making cards to thank veterans.”
The ‘Thank You’ cards will then be delivered to Seattle VA Medical Center. The spokesperson contended that it provides a “more personal connection between students and veterans.”
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