Friday, November 30, 2007

Remember how it was before the separation between church and state was broken?

Bluegal at Crooks and Liars updates her post about the forced resignation of the Texas Education Agency's director of science curriculum:
The state’s director of science curriculum has resigned after being accused of creating the appearance of bias against teaching intelligent design.
by saying this:
Some commenters are taking offense that this post is anti-Christian. I wrote it. I’m a Christian (believing Quaker). A great many members of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State believe as I do that intelligent design is a specific attempt by Fundamentalists to inject religion into the public schools, and some of us also believe that if the State teaches the Bible they will misinterpret it for our children. Religious freedom requires freedom from anyone’s individual religious beliefs being force taught in the public schools as scientific fact.
Thank you for saying that, bluegal. It wasn't that long ago that religion was not jammed into everyone else's face. We were able to interact and vote without taking someone's beliefs into account.

Breaking down the wall between church and state has brought all the power hungry Christianists out into the open. Who knew there were so many of them who hate the Constitution and wish to destroy the United States?

Update: Tengrain of Mock, Paper, Scissors has more.

Update 12/1: I've copied my reply in this post.


History Matters said...

The First Amendment's words are indeed scant, but we can gain some insight into their meaning by looking at the actions of those who were there at the time. Our first Congress paid for the printing of 20,000 Bibles. Thomas Jefferson, whom we usually are quoting when we say "separation of church and state," was president of the Washington, D.C. schools. He specified that the main sources of reading for students would be the Holy Bible and the Watts Hymnal.

The Founders intended the Bill of Rights to prevent the Federal Government from accumulating too much power. The 14th Amendment has been used (not necessarily correctly) to apply the Establishment Clause to the states. Even so, this would not prevent a school district from using Bibles in school. In could, however, justify objection to a state policy that was not Constitutional. But the Founders' actions, which I am working to list in my own blog, would have absolutely no problem with teaching intelligent design.

ellroon said...

Where to begin?

I don't know if you should rely on Jefferson for your 'intelligent design' theory.

Doing a quick google of Jefferson brought up these quotes:
"Jefferson, at 33, drafted the Declaration of Independence. In years following he labored to make its words a reality in Virginia. Most notably, he wrote a bill establishing religious freedom, enacted in 1786."

And: "But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg."
— Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1782

"Christianity is the most perverted system that ever shone on man."
— Thomas Jefferson

"In every country and every age, the priest had been hostile to Liberty."
— Thomas Jefferson

"Christianity neither is, nor ever was a part of the common law."
— Thomas Jefferson, letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814

"It is between fifty and sixty years since I read the Apocalypse, and I then considered it merely the ravings of a maniac."
— Thomas Jefferson

"The Christian God is a being of terrific character — cruel, vindictive, capricious, and unjust."
— Thomas Jefferson

"The day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerva in the brain of Jupiter."
— Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, 1823

Bibles have been included as reading material in many schools. I took a Bible class in college. But it was just that: a BIBLE class, not a science class. Classical scholars read the bible because literature is saturated with references and quotes from the book. Using a bible as a reference book or a book to teach reading does not make the leap to 'intelligent design' in science classes.

Science is different than faith and has an entirely different process. 'Intelligent design' belongs in the church, not in a school.

Besides...which 'intelligent design' do you assume will be taught in the public schools? Hindu? Muslim? Catholic?

Why on earth do you presume the religion that would be shoehorned in with the 'intelligent design' concepts would be yours?

Do you know how many religions we have here in the United States? Once you've opened the door to a state sponsored teaching of religion, we will have struggles for power between the churches to claim their version is the correct one. Europe is a standing example of such battles.

Do you really want to activate that? Do you realize the separation between church and state has allowed all Americans to live side by side in harmony?

Is that what you really want, a holy war? Don't answer. It's obvious.