I got an e-mail from DEFCON today, and i sent Time a response on their cover story about teaching religion in schools. I also read most of the first of 4 pages of the article from Time. After swallowing some vomit I dutifully sent Time a letter, the essence being that, well, read on please, I'll bold my favorite parts.
There is no reason to be teaching the Bible in public schools, carefully or otherwise.
The Bible is a compilation of moral and religious teachings. Public schools are for educating minor children in the fundamentals of reading, mathematics, scientific methodology, engineering, artistic expression, logic, and reason. You know, tools and building blocks for future growth.
You can't "teach" the Bible in the schools without including all of the moralizing, the values, the dogmatic belief systems, the faith, and the righteousness. Not to mention, whose Bible are you going to teach? The Jewish Bible (hey, it came first you know), the Catholic one, the Methodist one, what about the Koran or the Hindu sacred texts? What about something for the atheists or the deists, what kind of Bible are you going to bring for them? Somebody else’s?
For a magazine that has more time for writing articles then a newspaper, it's pretty shocking how shallow you have become. It's like you're trying to compress seven days of car chase stupidity into a weekly magazine, instead of doing in depth and truly thoughtful and well researched work.
Why didn't Time do the story on the conditions at Walter Reed, instead of a daily newspaper? Why hasn't Time researched the purge of the US Attorney's and the lies and dissembling from Gonzales and Crew that have followed the revelations of the Purge? How many people have resigned from the White House so far because of that story, and yet you want to write dreck about teaching that damnable book in Public Schools?
I guess because the religious fundamentalists of America have been screaming and shoving their precious Bible down our throats, it behooves the public schools to cave into that fundamentalist revisionism and start teaching their creed, since, to quote your lovely piece, "But then religion rushed into the public square."
All by itself it rushed into the public square, right? Dobson and Falwell and Robertson and Reagan and Bush evangelicalizing and fomenting their neo-fundamentalism on America, and we're expected to accept that frame and buy into the notion that Religion, IXOYE style, is an intrinsic part of the American psyche, so gosh, we better teach it in the public schools.
If Thomas Jefferson were alive today he'd probably spend all of his days fused to his toilet, vomiting in despair and revulsion at what America is becoming, the antithesis of what the American Revolution was all about, a revolution of mind and spirit that Jefferson expressed in our Declaration of Independence. Teaching religion in the schools because a bunch of hypocritical blowhards with access and influence want to propagate their insidious fundamentalism hardly seems like a reason for rejecting the very foundations of this country.
But hey, your religion writer had a deadline to meet, right?
[Was that too harsh for Time? Think they'll publish it?]