An Arizona legislator introduced a bill this week attempting to get the state to allow public high schools to offer an elective class on GASP! the Bible. The idea behind the bill is that the misguided mindset behind banning the Bible from public education is just that, misguided. If you are going to understand art, literature, and history, a foundation in knowing what is in that book, called the Bible is critical.
Not only that, understanding the differences between a Catholic and Protestant Bible can be handy. Dr. J. almost came to blows with a classmate in 11th Grade as we were reading an F. Scott Fitzgerald short story called Absolution
. His character, Rudolph, is afraid of being overheard discussing his violation of the 6th and 9th commandments at confession. In the Catholic Church, and the following paragraph, this refers to committing adultery and coveting your neighbor’s wife. In Protestant teaching 6 and 9 are committing murder and bearing false witness. As the character is going to confession, one would think the former is the case. That didn’t stop Dr. J.’s smokin’ hot Lutheran crush from putting her spin on the tale (as a lot of Minnesotans, where F. Scott grew up, were Lutheran, she felt the need to make the Lutheran case regarding what was otherwise a rather Popish story).
Dr. J. went to an independent school so he learned the Bible as history in 5th grade. He learned all about how it applied in English class in 9th grade. (Never learned the its/it’s thing, though), and when it came up in History or English class, we discussed it (literary allusions and such).
That’s what this legislator wants to happen, as the Bible is a critical body of work for understanding our history, our literature and our culture, in addition to being a Holy Book for many. Dr. J. and his classmates were good at compartmentalizing our faith, and honestly, it didn’t come up in class.
By way of contrast, in a Greek Philosophers class, Dr. J. had an annoying classmate who kept comparing everything to Hinduism. Usually he couldn’t even get that right.
Now obviously, there are opponents. All we need to do is go to the Puffington Host
article on the topic to find one.
Critics are troubled by the bills, arguing that teaching religion and the Bible is tricky — and teachers are often not sufficiently or properly trained to teach the subject effectively. It’s also difficult to teach a Bible course without imposing religious views, even inadvertently, Victoria Lopez, a program director with the Arizona office of the American Civil Liberties Union, told the Associated Press.
“It’s very easy for teachers to cross the line and violate students’ religious rights,” Lopez told AP. “There’s a lot of room here for those violations to take place.”
Leave it to the Progressives to block teaching a critical part of the Western Canon because they think the teachers and students are incapable of separating Sunday from the rest of the week.
Is it any wonder our public education program is in shambles?