The Greendale School District removed a popular Hindu devotional song after a parent complained about religious lyrics in the song.
Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram, which was going to be sung in the original language, was pulled from the yearly holiday concert at all the elementary levels. The song was made popular by Gandhi when he and his followers sang it during the Salt March to Dandi.
Anna Madden, a school district representative, said a parent or two complained and felt offended about a religious saying in the song.
This year's holiday concert has a multicultural theme, Madden said. Other multicultural songs included are Feliz Navidad, a Kwanza song and the Hebrew song Hava Nagila.
Madden also said that other school districts, such as Whitefish Bay, have cancelled holiday concerts all together because of the controversy behind them.
The school district pulled the song because a parent said that their child would sit out of the Hindu song and an e-mail with the English lyrics translation would be sent out to all the parents, Madden said.
The school district didn't want to make any child uncomfortable by sitting out and cancelled the song for that reason.
"The concerts are suppose to be fun," Madden said.
There were also parents who were upset that the song was pulled from the concerts. Madden said they have received a few complaints about that as well.
"For me, if that is the case, all songs that have religious overtones should be pulled and this is just thinly-veiled racism from the parents," Jason Dobbs, a parent, wrote Patch in an e-mail.
The school district emphasized that they didn't want any child to feel uncomfortable and wanted it to be fun all the children.
When asked Madden said there were no other complaints about other songs.