Donald Trump Promotes Bible Literacy Classes After Misleading FOX News Segment January 28, 2019

Donald Trump Promotes Bible Literacy Classes After Misleading FOX News Segment

***Update***: The North Dakota bill at the center of this controversy died in the State Senate after a 42-5 vote against it.

Earlier today, North Dakota State Rep. Aaron McWilliams appeared on Fox & Friends to talk about his bill that would force public schools to offer Bible classes. His legislation, as we’ve discussed before, doesn’t distinguish between teaching the Bible as literature (which could be okay) and teaching it as fact (which would be illegal). His bill doesn’t lay out what needed to be taught, only that schools needed to teach it, and that it could replace a one-semester U.S. Government or economics class as a requirement for graduation.

The bill would almost certainly be challenged in court the moment it passed. So of course he defended it on FOX News. (The tweet below says “NC state legislator,” but McWilliams is from North Dakota.)

The full segment is below:

McWilliams says, “There’s a separation of church and state, but there’s not a separation of books from education.” That would be a great point… if the goal of his bill was education, not indoctrination. But he’s using the language of religious freedom to make a case for Christian supremacy. If a public school district taught the Qur’an the way he wants the Bible taught, he’d be flipping out, along with the FOX audience.

He also says in the interview that our “system of judges” and “the concept of forgiveness” all come from the Bible. As if morality and laws and basic human decency didn’t exist until Jesus came around.

Finally, he makes the ridiculous argument that not forcing the Bible in schools is really pushing the “religion of secularism” by default. There’s no room for religious neutrality in his worldview. It’s either pro-Bible or pro-atheism… which is news to those of us who went to a public school and didn’t get any religious or non-religious belief pushed upon us.

The language of McWilliams’ bill doesn’t just allow districts to offer it; it would force them to hire someone to teach the class, no matter how little interest students have in it, at the expense of hiring someone else in a different subject. The bill also doesn’t require the classes to be taught objectively. That’s why it’s bad, that’s why legislators should oppose it, and that’s why no politician should advocate for what McWilliams wants.

So naturally, Donald Trump stepped in about an hour later with a defense of the Bible classes. It’s a reminder that the president gets his news and legal analyses from FOX instead of competent sources.

Anything to appease the Christian Right when everyone else in the country blames you for a shutdown and your buddies are all being charged with crimes… Leave it to a serial adulterer/President Pussy-Grabber/Mr. Two Corinthians/Guy-Who-Never-Opens-a-Bible-Unless-It’s-for-a-Photo-Op to promote a bill forcing the Bible in schools.

Well, I guess I wasn’t expecting him to promote U.S. History…

It’s not surprising Trump doesn’t understand any of the nuance involved in this issue, but the Religious Right leaders involved in Project Blitz are undoubtedly celebrating their latest endorsement.

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