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Tue Jun 11, 2019, 11:45 AM

Religion in the classroom: Where the faithful and the ACLU can agree

From the article:

The United States has a religion problem, but it is not what most Americans might think. It is not a problem of too many religions, or religion influencing politics or even of Muslim extremists. No, the United States has a religion problem, and this problem is ignorance of religion.

The sad fact is that it is possible to journey from first grade to a doctorate in U.S. school systems having never once taken a survey course on the Bible, much less having been introduced to basic knowledge of the world’s religions. When religion is treated at all, it is usually in bits and pieces — the biblical references in Melville’s “Moby Dick,” perhaps, or the religious issues fueling the Crusades.....

Intriguingly, much of this crisis may be rooted in a myth. School districts and state boards of education fear recriminations if they deal with matters of faith in the classroom. Yet even the American Civil Liberties Union — dreaded in many American school districts for its lawsuits against religion in public education — urges objective teaching of the world’s religions. In its Joint Statement on Current Law and Religion in the Public Schools, the organization declared, “It is both permissible and desirable to teach objectively about the role of religion in the history of the United States and other countries.”


To read more:

https://religionnews.com/2019/06/07/religion-in-the-classroom-where-the-faithful-and-the-aclu-can-agree/

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Reply Religion in the classroom: Where the faithful and the ACLU can agree (Original post)
guillaumeb Jun 11 OP
Voltaire2 Jun 11 #1
guillaumeb Jun 11 #2
wasupaloopa Jun 12 #31
Mariana Jun 11 #4
Voltaire2 Jun 11 #23
wasupaloopa Jun 12 #33
Mariana Jun 11 #3
guillaumeb Jun 11 #5
MineralMan Jun 11 #6
guillaumeb Jun 11 #7
MineralMan Jun 11 #8
guillaumeb Jun 11 #9
MineralMan Jun 11 #10
guillaumeb Jun 11 #11
MineralMan Jun 11 #12
guillaumeb Jun 11 #15
Act_of_Reparation Jun 11 #16
Mariana Jun 11 #21
True Dough Jun 12 #26
guillaumeb Jun 12 #39
Voltaire2 Jun 11 #24
guillaumeb Jun 12 #38
Voltaire2 Jun 12 #41
guillaumeb Jun 12 #43
zipplewrath Jun 12 #29
MineralMan Jun 12 #32
zipplewrath Jun 12 #35
MineralMan Jun 12 #37
msongs Jun 11 #13
guillaumeb Jun 11 #14
trotsky Jun 11 #17
Major Nikon Jun 11 #18
guillaumeb Jun 11 #19
trotsky Jun 11 #20
MineralMan Jun 11 #22
trotsky Jun 12 #25
True Dough Jun 12 #27
wasupaloopa Jun 12 #28
zipplewrath Jun 12 #30
wasupaloopa Jun 12 #34
zipplewrath Jun 12 #36
AtheistCrusader Jun 12 #40
Voltaire2 Jun 12 #42
guillaumeb Jun 21 #44
AtheistCrusader Jun 25 #45

Response to guillaumeb (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 11:56 AM

1. Yeah well the fanatics will just abuse

any opening to get their religious propaganda into the public schools. So no, not a good idea at all.

The ACLU is being perhaps deliberately naive in order to appear fair. Having experienced what the fanatics will do to exploit any opening with my local school system, no thanks.

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Response to Voltaire2 (Reply #1)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:00 PM

2. Alternatlvely,

the ACLU does not share your agenda, and your rather narrow view of theists.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #2)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:35 AM

31. That is not a narrow view. If anything the religious have the narrow view based on unproven myth.

The religious are arrogant thinking that society needs to let them work their way into all our lives.

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Response to Voltaire2 (Reply #1)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:08 PM

4. The ACLU rightly favors objective instruction about world religions.

I'm sure they understand that it rarely actually happens that way.

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Response to Mariana (Reply #4)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 08:43 PM

23. That's my point.

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Response to Mariana (Reply #4)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:41 AM

33. I really doubt the ACLU favors any course of instruction, that is not it's purpose.

The ACLU most likely does not stand against the teaching about religions in public schools but does not condone teaching religion in public schools. The religious are wrong to take comfort in misinterpreting what the ACLU stands for, it does not give you permission to inflict your doctrines on public school children.

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Response to guillaumeb (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:07 PM

3. I think it's been demonstrated that for the most part

religious teachers, administrators, and school board members can't be trusted to deal with religious subjects objectively. Too many of them see the teaching of any such material as an opportunity to proselytize to their captive audience. Very often, they're doing this with the enthusiastic support of the religious community. Students who object to religious indoctrination, prayers, and such in public school are often ostracized and threatened. Sometimes, they receive credible death threats and require police protection, while political and religious leaders publicly slander and demonize them.

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Response to Mariana (Reply #3)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:09 PM

5. I agree with your point, in the main,

but I also agree with the ACLU position.

As well, students who do not wish to say the pledge of allegiance are also ostracized. All part of building social cohesion.

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Response to guillaumeb (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:23 PM

6. I have yet to see religion presented in schools

in any objective way at all. Bias toward one or another religion always creeps into such efforts.

Given that, I'd prefer that parents be left with the job of teaching about religion. It doesn't belong in our schools, especially since objective presentations are essentially impossible. When teacher has a bias about religion, it is that bias that is taught. No matter how carefully such instruction is monitored, it will have bias in it.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #6)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:32 PM

7. I disagree, and the ACLU does as well.

Perhaps your own bias influences your response.

By your logic, history should not be taught as well.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #7)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:38 PM

8. I'm sure you do.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #8)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:39 PM

9. Should we eliminate the teaching of history as well?

It is filled with bias.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #9)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:42 PM

10. History is taught with varying degrees of quality.

Religion, on the other hand, is almost never taught without bias. Even at the college level, the biases of the instructor become part of the instruction.

As I said, I have never encountered any unbiased classes on religion in my lifetime. Not once.

I have, however, observed history classes that were free from bias. Why is that, do you think?

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #10)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:45 PM

11. I have never read a primary or secondary level history textbook that did not show bias.

Perhaps your own bias, or lack of specific historical knowledge, led you to feel that the classes were free from bias.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #11)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 12:46 PM

12. Done with this thread.

Bye.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #12)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 01:03 PM

15. Probably an excellent idea. eom

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #11)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 03:09 PM

16. I have never heard of a biased history lesson violating the establishment clause.

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Response to Act_of_Reparation (Reply #16)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 05:59 PM

21. Some people have tried to claim they do, though.

This happened where I went to high school - I had already graduated, but my brother was still attending one of the high schools in the district. A group of Christians brought a suit that a bunch of the textbooks being used were promoting "secular humanism" as a religion, in violation of the Establishment Clause. Some of them were history books. A Christian federal judge, W. Brevard Hand, ruled in their favor, and the textbooks were taken from the students and removed from the classrooms. The appeals court reversed the ruling, and after that the Christian group let it drop.

I was surprised to find a summary online:
https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/1987/12/09/07390026.h07.html

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #11)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:14 AM

26. You got him on that one

It is impossible to find historical teachings without some degree of bias. I can imagine that will be true forever. Can you imagine how President Trump will be portrayed by history teachers who lived through his tenure? They're bound to be either in the MAGA camp or absolutely despise the man, as DUers do. Hard to call it "down the middle" with such a divisive and polarizing figure.

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Response to True Dough (Reply #26)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 11:11 AM

39. Agreed.

And much of what is taught as US history is an agreed upon narrative that happens to favor the rich.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #9)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 08:45 PM

24. Many public education history courses

are nationalistic propaganda and a disservice toward the mission of cultivating an informed citizenry.

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Response to Voltaire2 (Reply #24)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 11:08 AM

38. Agreed.

In many cases, what is called history is only an agreed upon narrative that supports what the rich want.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #38)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 07:12 PM

41. unfortunately there is no establishment clause for history education

so governments are free to abuse children by indoctrinating them in utter bullshit.

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Response to Voltaire2 (Reply #41)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 08:54 PM

43. And build group identity. eom

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #6)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:33 AM

29. Bible as Literature

I took a high school course called "The Bible as Literature". It was taught in the english department. The real point of the course was in order to understand much of western literature, you have to understand much of the bible story. The teacher was very good in that it was less about faith than it was about how the bible influences western literature.

I suspect something similar could be taught about religions in the sense of how they have affected western culture, and really cultures around the world.

The problem of course is that we can't hardly teach history without arguing about the facts. I suspect religion would be even worse. Can you imagine if the same people that write history books for Texas, end up writing texts on comparative religion studies or some such topic?

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #29)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:41 AM

32. Such a course was not offered in my high school.

Instead, we had a "religious release" program, where students were released from school for an hour once a week. During that hour, they went to a church of their choice for religious education. They, meaning those who wished to do so and had permission from their parents.

I didn't count, but about 75% of students participated. We had that program in elementary school, as well.

I didn't participate in it. Instead we stayed in our normal classrooms or went to the school library. I remember sixth grade, too, when that hour was used by my teacher to give us lessons in Spanish. I think there were four students in that classroom, and we actually learned some decent conversational Spanish during that school year. In high school, we spent that hour at the school library.

Sunday School on Wednesday was what that amounted to. The churches loved it. Some even sent a bus to take kids to their religious release program.

I learned conversational Spanish.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #32)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 10:03 AM

35. They tried that

But the churches were bad at taking attendance and the kids were really good a using it to skip school.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #35)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 10:12 AM

37. Clever kids!

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Response to guillaumeb (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 01:01 PM

13. just an excuse to cram bibles down the throats of captive audience kids nt

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Response to msongs (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 01:02 PM

14. The ACLU disagrees. eom

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #14)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 03:44 PM

17. Excellent, so the next time the ACLU says something, can we assume you will agree with them?

Can't wait to throw this back at you.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #17)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 04:49 PM

18. ...

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Response to trotsky (Reply #17)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 05:11 PM

19. How did you arrive at that conclusion?

It is obvious that you did not use the scientific method because the statement is based on nothing.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #19)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 05:42 PM

20. You are berating everyone who disagrees with you by saying the ACLU supports your position.

One might assume, then, that the ACLU's opinion is of supreme importance to you.

Please correct me if I am wrong.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #20)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 06:06 PM

22. Well, he's arguing with me after I quoted directly

From an ACLU press release on their website. Apparently religionnews.com knows the ACLU better than the ACLU does.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #22)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:05 AM

25. Everyone knows religionnews.com is the most reliable source of information anywhere!

Well, as long as it says something Monsieur G wants to believe.

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Response to trotsky (Reply #20)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:15 AM

27. You got him on that one

I feel like I'm repeating myself in this thread.

Win some, lose some.

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Response to guillaumeb (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:30 AM

28. Fuck that! Why do we need to study a religion's dogma? We do not need religion which does more

harm than good.

Go to church and perform your rights but get the hell out of the lives of those who do not want it!

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #28)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:34 AM

30. In order to understand much of society

You really have to understand the influence of various religions on their cultures, which means studying them to begin with.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #30)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 09:51 AM

34. No you do not. Religion is not central to society. The religious like to think so since they measure

everything in moral immoral good and evil terms. Religion’s place in society came from human inability to understand thus humans credit a higher power be it god or a tree.

The religious need to believe that society needs religion when actually society could become more further developed with out religion. The current attack on women’s reproductive rights is a case in point.

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Response to wasupaloopa (Reply #34)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 10:08 AM

36. Most traditions find their roots in religion

It's probably better described as a symbiotic relationship, but it is difficult to separate most cultures from their religions. It's pretty hard to understand western European culture without understanding the history of the christian/catholic church. It's hard to understand much of the history of the larger region without understanding the conflict between middle east religious history and the conflict with Christianity. It's not so much a deep dive into theology as it is understanding how that theology intersects with the history and traditions.

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Response to guillaumeb (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 03:50 PM

40. Your source is bending the truth. (AKA Lying)

This is not 'the American Civil Liberties Union's joint statement'.

This is a joint statement by

American Jewish Congress, Chair
American Civil Liberties Union
American Jewish Committee
American Muslim Council
Anti-Defamation League
Baptist Joint Committee
Christian Legal Society
General Conference of Seventh day Adventists
National Association of Evangelicals
National Council of Churches People for the American Way
Union of American Hebrew Congregations


This is a committee-made statement. ALL of these organizations worked to author and pass this statement. It is not 'the ACLU's', does not belong to the ACLU, and as far as I can tell, this 1995 document does not exist on the ACLU's website/archive.

Endorsing Organizations
American Ethical Union American Humanist Association Americans for Religious liberty Americans United for Separation of Church and State B'nai B'rith, International Christian Science Church, Church of the Brethren, Washington Office Church of Scientology International Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Lutheran Office of Governmental Affairs Federation of Reconstructionist Congregations and Havurot Friends Committee on National Legislation Guru Gobind Singh Foundation Interfaith Alliance Interfaith Impact for Justice and Peace National Council of Jewish Women National Jewish Community Relations Advisory Council (NJCRAC) National Ministries, American Baptist Churches, USA National Sikh Center North American Council for Muslim Women Presbyterian Church (USA) Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations United Church of Christ, Office for Church in Society


THIS section from your source is complete and utter lies.

"The sad fact is that it is possible to journey from first grade to a doctorate in U.S. school systems having never once taken a survey course on the Bible, much less having been introduced to basic knowledge of the world’s religions. When religion is treated at all, it is usually in bits and pieces — the biblical references in Melville’s “Moby Dick,” perhaps, or the religious issues fueling the Crusades....."


Basic knowledge of the world's religions IS taught in public schools, as you can tell when christians LOSE THEIR EVERLOVING SHIT and sue schools for 'INDOCTRINATING THEIR KIDS INTO ISLAM' by, you know, mentioning the existence of said religion and describing its tenets.

"11th grade World History class"
https://www.thomasmore.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/Thomas-More-Law-Center-Files-Lawsuit-On-Behalf-of-Marine-Dad-Banned-from-Schoo-After-He-Objected-to-Islamic-Indoctrination-Complaint-Time-Stamped.pdf

And as one might expect, the case was thrown the fuck out by Judge George Jarrod Hazel, and appeal appears to have been denied.

So. Your source is not actually the ACLU as it was proffered, and your source spun the whole thing, and lied to your face. I eagerly await you doing the honest thing and withdrawing the false material.

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #40)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 07:15 PM

42. I'm shocked!

Last edited Thu Jun 13, 2019, 05:57 AM - Edit history (1)


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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #40)

Fri Jun 21, 2019, 06:25 PM

44. What my source said:

Intriguingly, much of this crisis may be rooted in a myth. School districts and state boards of education fear recriminations if they deal with matters of faith in the classroom. Yet even the American Civil Liberties Union — dreaded in many American school districts for its lawsuits against religion in public education — urges objective teaching of the world’s religions. In its Joint Statement on Current Law and Religion in the Public Schools, the organization declared, “It is both permissible and desirable to teach objectively about the role of religion in the history of the United States and other countries.”


What the ACLU says:

While it is permissible for public schools to teach about religion, it is not permissible to promote particular religious beliefs. Although public schools should not be leading children in prayers or religious ceremonies, they should also be respectful of the religious beliefs of students. Second, public schools should protect children from being coerced by others to accept religious (or anti-religious!) beliefs. Public schools should seek to create an environment conducive to learning by all students and not act as vehicles proselytizing for religious or anti-religious beliefs.


https://www.aclu.org/other/aclu-and-freedom-religion-and-belief

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #44)

Tue Jun 25, 2019, 10:10 AM

45. So, just going to ignore all your source's lies then?

Typical.

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