Some friends of mine and I have been having an interesting discussion over this.
An Arizona lawmaker wants to create a high school course for public and charter school students that would teach the Bible and its role in Western culture.
HB 2563, would require the State Board of Education to determine requirements for a high school course titled "The Bible and its influence on Western Culture," which would include lessons on the history, literature and influence of the Old and New testaments on laws, government and culture, among other aspects of society.
One guy has made the point that it is the most influential book written on American culture. That's hard to dissagree with. My point is that much of it has had a negative influence.
So, what would you like to see as part of the course? Obviously the evangelicals want to prostletize and the athiest will want to include fact.
So what good and bad influences has the Bible had on Western Culture?
Opening chapter. First christians in America killed natives and enslaved them while looking for gold?
Chapter two- separation of church and state and the founding fathers....
Christianity and the submissive wife.
Christianity and taxes.
Why are their so many sects in America?
The rise of the megachurch.
Do you get into the roots of christian theology's influence? The popes? Martin Luther, Augustine, calvin, etc
You get my drift. I suppose we could list the good as well to be fair. If you had a voice in the curriculum what would you like to see included?
Christianity - the power of ostracism.
I wonder when they'll teach about Muslims & their role in history. What?! Oh yea.
Well, we know that won't happen but as my friend pointed out, the bible is and has been much more influential to American society than muslim cutlure or athiesm.
On positives they always bring up charity, but they also are trying to say our laws are based on the bible citing of all things Dueteronomy which I laughed at.
That would be great. The Muslim religion has some uber-crazy sects nowadays, but once upon a time it was the one religion that truly believed in encouraging science, and was also the most tolerant of other religions, believing that there are more than one path to the one God.
It would have to be objective and as historically accurate as possible. I've been reading this book (the title is currently escaping me) about the three monotheistic religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. It has really enlightened me as to how these major religions started out and how it has literally been the conflicting views of man that has fueled how they have evolved, splintered, changed, and eventually come to be what they are today. It is possible to teach how Christianity has come to be these past 2000 years-- how it has been shaped by man's idea of God and not necessarily God himself, and to teach all of the bajillions of hypocrisies running throughout "The Great Book." I wish I'd gotten to take such a class. I would have known I was an atheist much sooner than I did.
Whose Bible? Wouldn't the protestants be upset if the catholic version were used? Wouldn't both protestants and catholics be upset if a Coptic version were used? ... Yes, I know, the good, old King James version would be the likely choice.
I once enraged a man who was carrying on that prayer should be put back into the schools. I asked a similar question to the above - whose prayers would the children say? He wanted to know what I meant, so I explained - "Well, it's true that Roman Catholics make up only 40 % of the population - but it's a solid 40%, whereas the protestant majority of 53% is very splintered, none of the sects coming anywhere near the catholic 40%.And I assure you - the Episcopalians (who hold much if not most of the nation's wealth) - are far more likely to jump ship and side w/the Roman Catholics than they are to side w/the Baptists or pentecostal sects. And, of course, the Lutherans and the Roman Catholics have become very chummy of late - they've even begun to share each other's church premises and resources ... So, you see, my Baptist friend, your kiddies are likely to be fingering rosary beads while saying their "Hail Mary" - again and again and again ... Now how's your prayer in school, you twisted fuck?"