The Skeptical Teacher

Musings of a science teacher & skeptic in an age of woo.

Necessity of Vigilance: Fundamentalists Ignore the Law in Texas

Posted by mattusmaximus on February 12, 2013

Well, you have to give the religious fundamentalists in this country (the United States) one thing: they are indeed persistent.  In fact, the situation in Texas public schools goes beyond the blatant teaching of creationism (which is a problem), because it extends to these fundamentalists pushing their narrow religious interpretations in public school “Bible classes”…

In Texas schools, failing grade for Bible courses

Fifty years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional the devotional use of the Bible by public schools, in its ruling on Abington Township v. Schempp.

But many school districts in the Lone Star State still haven’t gotten the message, according to a report released last month by the Texas Freedom Network (TFN) entitled “Reading, Writing and Religion.”

Conducted by religious studies professor Mark Chancey of Southern Methodist University, the study examines elective Bible courses offered in 57 Texas school districts and 3 charter schools and concludes that “evidence of sectarian bias, predominantly favoring perspectives of conservative Protestantism, is widespread.” (The full report is available at http://www.tfn.org/biblecourses.)

In other words, school officials in many parts of Texas convert public schools into Sunday schools in violation of the First Amendment’s ban on government establishment of religion. … [emphasis added]

So there you have it.  When these fundamentalists lose in court they just ignore the law and continue with their illegal and unconstitutional proselytizing in public schools.  This shows the necessity of vigilance on the part of those of us who value a secular society which fosters good science education and keeps church and state separate.  So if your child attends a school with these kind of Bible courses, make sure to check up and see that they’re being taught in a constitutionally sound manner.

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2 Responses to “Necessity of Vigilance: Fundamentalists Ignore the Law in Texas”

  1. Woody said

    How arrogant of them!
    I bet that in the aftermath of this law-breaking, involving federal troops or whatever other tactic ensures that the law is observed, those religious groups responsible will be let off with the lightest slap on the wrist and sound-off with pleas for sympathy and claims of authority (since they are doing what they know god wants).
    It’s easy to imagine the whole disgusting scene.
    Does the bible not promote following the law of the established leaders of your land, or something along those lines? Even if that’s true, they’ll find some way to raise their own actions above those bible words.

  2. Gary Cook said

    I was in elementary school when the Supreme Court or whatever authority banned coercive christian prayer in public schools. The teachers and parents both hated the ruling and conducted business as usual; I recall being disciplined for not praying with the rest of the class when Kennedy was shot. The adults’ refusal to comply with the laws impressed me greatly: laws and rules weren’t mandatory and following them could be chosen or rejected based on personal beliefs. As one might surmise, this caused problems later in life. Fortunately, I unlearned that attitude before felonies were committed. Many opportunities in my life were ruined by that philosophy taught to me by my school and community. Kids learn in schools. We choose what they learn and it may not be what we intend. Society will reap what Texas sows; gods help us all.

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