10 Comments

  1. KRISTEN

    If the educational system is going to continue to ban the Pledge of Allegiance and school prayer, then it would seem hypocritical to spend time in the classroom teaching Biblical material like the creation story. The educational system has worked hard to stay neutral in terms of religious affiliation, and I actually think that’s the best way to go (I’m strictly referring to primary and secondary-level public schools, mind you).

    I personally think education and religion should be completely separate entities. It’s not the school’s job to teach Biblical material, and it’s not the church’s job to teach evolutionary theory. Children should certainly have access to both institutions, but I think the academic intermingling of the two would be extremely confusing to young children and would do more harm than good.

  2. @Kristen: is the pledge banned now? I had no idea. It’s been so long since I was in the school system.

    I agree with you to a point, but I just wonder if, by teaching children the fable of Adam & Eve as a myth, it might cast the entire rest of the Bible as the collection of myths and fables it really is. And I don’t know about “confusing to young children,” who are often way more sophisticated than we adults tend to give them credit for.

  3. GOTHAMGIRL

    I alway figured that man was flawed and that there for the bible had more then a few hic-ups in it. (Not to mention the fact that it’s such a long damn book most people take some one’s biased view as fact) I always thought that because God was so great that the world wasn’t created in our 6 puny human days but in 6 godly days. when you don’t die, and I’m assuming as much, a godly day is alot longer.

    If I can get along with my sister there is hope for everyone. Talk with him more often, just not about politics and religion. You could talk about shoes, colors, weather, pets, school, food, CDs, books, movies, nature, cars, tv, women, other family members, etc.

  4. LISA NOYES

    “And I don’t know about “confusing to young children,” who are often way more sophisticated than we adults tend to give them credit for.”

    I think it would be confusing. At least, I’ve contemplated putting Ethan in a Christian school for the simple fact that all of his cousins and mates will be attending. It hadn’t occured to me that Ethan will be his own person and should he decide a certain path may be right for him, so be it. I just can’t bring myself to putting him into a school out of fear of segregation, I am much smarter than that.

    Everyone keeps telling me Christian schools
    are better because they instill stronger values. That he’ll be exposed to the “rough and ugly” in a public school – I say, so what? Just because some kids may not have the same luxuries as Ethan, it doesn’t take away from their values.

    I dunno. I’m confused by the whole aspect of religion because I never grew up with it. It was never forced on me, so I’m afraid of doing that to my own son just because his whole influential family thinks I should.

  5. @Gotham: we’re getting better, and talking slightly more often. Though not about shoes.

    @Lisa: “Everyone keeps telling me Christian schools are better because they instill stronger values.” Unfortunately, Christian values nowadays consist of terrorist paranoia and the belief that we need a marriage amendment. Christianity is based on segregation, most of the time, nowadays. It’s all us versus them, with little definition of who us and them actually are besides anyone who thinks/feels differently than the “establishment.” Were Jesus to return today, the religion established in his name would probably make him cry.

  6. Classrooms today are full of way too many things. Whether we legislate it or make a rule about it, like it or not, religion carries into the classroom. Why? Because children are the products of their homes…and many people are devoutly whatever religion they happen to be. It’s as inherent as their ethnicity and gender. And as much as educators don’t want to be hassled with the realities of things like religion and ethnicity, the bottom line is that it matters. And understand how it matters and why it matters is the key to getting through to kids–and their parents.

    Don’t get me wrong…I don’t think we should have religious teachings in our schools–for the simple reason that we are bound to overlook someone’s religious beliefs. But I think a lot of people take it way too far…either they try to ignore it because they think it’s irrelevant or stupid, or they get all crazy about their “rights.”

    The key here is that education should be about options. It should be about what’s best for the child, and it should be about embracing the background of every child.

    I do think that parents are the ultimate deciders of what their children should or should not learn. Public schools need to serve the public good. That means it should be a safe place for all children. If a parent wants his/her child to learn religious ideals, s/he should seek out private instruction.

  7. GOTHAMGIRL

    I only mentioned shoe because of our last conversation. i really don’t expect you to call your brother one day and say “I found the best shoes every.” I also don’t expect you to ask him about colors, but if you want to go for it.

    Is he older or younger

  8. @Alma: yeah, I agree. But I also think that children love stories and myths. They’re like bedtime stories, a lot of times. Hercules and Jason and his Argonauts and King Midas: I couldn’t get enough of those dudes when I was a kid. Zeus! King Arthur! The Bible is no more or less a myth than all those stories, and I just think it needs to be learned on the same footing. I think it’s worthwhile that children get -all- the stories concerning Christmas, not just the ones about Nazareth.

    @Gotham: he’s a few years younger.

  9. Will, while that may all be true, why is it necessary to incorporate this into a public school curriculum? For me, it has to be all or nothing because it is absolutely impossible to teach children stories from all cultures. Public schools are so overburdened as it is just giving kids a *basic* education. A public school teacher can’t be charged with the burden of attempting some all-inclusive curriculum. Which is why I don’t believe stories with religious overtones should be included in public education.

    Teachers shouldn’t be charged with teaching children morality–which is what religious beliefs usually entail. That’s the job of parents. Unfortunately, teachers have become glorifed babysitters/pseudoparents. A teacher should teach a child how to think, not what to think.

  10. I would agree with you about teaching the mythology of creationism, Will, if I were sure that it would be taught ONLY as myth. Both you and I know that there are zealots out there who would take every opportunity to teach these myths as fact to our little darlings in the classroom (like they do in parts of Kansas).

    Let’s keep church and state separate, as they should be.

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