Monday, January 23, 2012

Bibles, Schools, & Lawmakers

Apparently, Arizona lawmakers want to make a law promoting a "religion-neutral" course on the Bible in public schools.

Yes, you read that right. Religion-neutral class in public schools on the Bible.

Now, I have nothing against religion, but when your schools rank near the bottom of the nation, maybe you should focus on the basics like math, English, science. You know. Those silly little things.

Some of the lawmakers said that Yale professors wanted students to have a better foundation, but I get the feeling that the professors were aiming more for a better grasp of the English language. It's a bit sad when ESL students have a better grasp of the English language than natural speakers.

Of course, there are other ways to enhance students' interest in their own language. Promote other topics that appeal to a larger variety of interests. If they can find a teacher to teach the Bible, then they can probably find a teacher to teach other special topics. Just looking at ASU's English classes, you have Shakespeare, science fiction studies, fiction and poetry workshops, and British literature. There's even a course on Mark Zuckerberg. The best way to teach something is to make it relevant to the students. Not all students are Christian, and even some of those that are may not care about the Bible. Others probably don't want to try to cram another boring course into their busy schedules.

Unless this course is an elective, I don't see how anyone could claim that this is not a breach of Church and State.


  1. Sticky topic. I am an advocate of teaching the Bible as a study of the book primarily for the fact that so much of Western Literature is rooted in this book, as is law and history. I think that it's important to make connections between these so we can understand some of the though processes of those who came before us as well as understand the Biblical references that are alluded to in literature as well as the other arts. It's an indisputable back that our predecessors were deeply grounded in Biblical knowledge and upbringing.

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    1. Then it can be an elective course, like an alternative history subject or junior or senior level English course. Yes, the Bible and Christianity have shaped Western civilization in a major way, but so have the Greeks, Romans, Jews (no offense), and Muslims. Even the Christianity sects that were destroyed in the early history of the Church had some effect.