Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Sunday School in Public School

So, how many of you would've signed up for this worthless elective?

I heard this story on NPR this morning. I think it's retarded.
How are they actually going to find someone with unbiased views to teach the Bible as a 'History' class, instead of skewing it with their own religious affiliated beliefs? If you can listen to the NPR story - please do. It discusses how without the proper training, teachers could make this 'History Class' into a Bible Study class. If you can't listen - i found a shorter article online. Here is an exerpt:

Senate Democrats propose Bible class for public schools
The Associated Press - ATLANTA

Georgia public school students would be allowed to study the Bible under a plan proposed by Democrats in the state Senate on Wednesday.
The bill authorizes the state school board to approve an optional course that would teach about the Bible's influence on literature, art, culture and politics.

"As a history major, I understand very clearly the impact the Bible has had on society," said Sen. Tim Golden, of Valdosta, chairman of the Senate's Democratic caucus and the bill's sponsor. "It's had a huge impact."

The bill would allow for "nonsectarian, nonreligious academic study" of the Bible and would require it "be taught in an objective and nondevotional manner with no attempt made to indoctrinate students as to either the truth or falsity of the biblical materials."



Amber said...

Not only is that retarded but at least one "higher up" has stepped into this creationism debate and said this:
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams
It's not like the world needs more Fred Phelps running around.
Or do we?

This and That said...

What is wrong with these spineless democrats?? I expected this to be supported by a Rep, but not a democrat. So, if the Bible is "history", why not the Koran,etc. I think you can have a college level course on the impact the Bible has had on culture, etc...but at a high school, middle school level it smacks of just another way to get religion in public school system. You all may think I am unpatriotic but I cringe now when they play the Pledge of Allegiance over the loudspeaker at my sons elementary school and have the kids recite it.

(And one Fred Phelps is one too many!)

locomocos said...

i agree with you, This and That. I felt the same when i heard the story, that it would make an excellent college course - and could be very interesting for history and political science majors. But high school? Middle school? Can they really find non-indiscriminate teachers to teach influential children the black and white of The Bible? Especially if they don't pay extra for specialized training for elective classes! DUH!!!!

and as far as creationalism goes - i think you all know my thoughts on that one....

caffeinator_x said...

The thing is, whether or not the zealots will cop to it (and they wont, because it will undermine their arguement that they are an oppressed minority - until of course it suits them to claim to be the "moral majority"), the historical and cultural significance of the bible is freely discussed in public schools every day, in the context of social studies and history classes -- so yeah, I'm skeptical of why we need a (high school level) class that focuses solely on that one particular influence, when most kids are graduating without a good foundational understanding of culture and history as a whole.

Paul said...

This is such cowardly political pandering to the far right by the Democrats. It is obvious to any thinking person (as all of you seem to be) that this is simply a veiled attempt to insert one form of morality into one of the most powerful institutions in the country (or any country for that matter): public education. If this were truly about teaching religious history this class would either contain within its curriculum or in other counterpart classes histories on the Q'uran; the Vedas; Jewish religious writings separate from the Torah, which is actually part of the Christian bible; and any and all other applicable religious texts. I was a Religious Studies minor in college and studied biblical history, references, etc. in a geographical reference that included studies of other middle eastern religions, namely Islam and Judaism. I also took classes with other regional foci: Eastern Religions. If this were truly about teaching religious history then I feel they would follow the above model. I tend to think, however, that this about Thought Control. Maybe we could learn from the French, who are moving in the opposite direction from us. They recently banned all religious clothing, decoration, etc. in their schools. No more crucifixes, stars of david, or muslim head coverings.

S E E Quine said...

` Very odd indeed. Yes, I'd say it'd be better if they included other religious texts or just drop the whole thing.
` I mean, lots of religions have affected lots of things in lots of places in the world, including America.

Denny said...

You know im going to be the last person to say whats right and wrong about religion or religious teaching in high school especially if it is NOT REQUIRED however this article reminds me of a discussion i was having the other day with some friends of mine. This really only reconfirms a point i was trying to make to them : Both of our major political parties this country are so far away from where the vast majority of the population lives no matter what you religous views are or even what your sexual preferences may be or (insert whatever thing makes you think you are so different here) I travel all over the country and make it an effort to have some kind of dialogue with whomever will sit still long enough to have some kind of conversation with and to be very honest with everyone the people i encounter everyday really kind of feel the same way about it all ??

totalvo said...

there needs to be a real left party again.

Aaron said...

I think that because such a vast majority of, not only Americans, but all people on earth subscribe to one religion or another, there should be a religion class in high school, and it should be required - not elective.

This class should not endorse any religion, and should not persecute any either. It should explore different kinds of religions and their impacts on society. In college I would put it at a high 200 level core class, and in high school I would give it only to juniors and seniors.

Maybe a little education about religion would eliminate a lot of ignorance and intolerance.

This and That said...

Intolerance and ignorance being eradicated by a class in religion? Now that I want to see.