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THE CULTURE WARS!  THEY JUST WON'T GO AWAY!

They're just not happy with pushing their ridiculous and idiotic creationism in the science classes in the public schools, even though federal courts have ruled against them on this.  They just can't help being compelled to ingrain us with their Jesus moral superiority everywhere, even though most of them practice nothing of what they preach.  But oh wait, I remember, they're The Chosen over there at C Street.  It's not enough that they can say just about anything, anytime they want about the Almighty, Jesus, Christianity, salvation, sinners and all the other assorted sh*t.  Well, okay, it is their First Amendment right and I easily agree with this right, but can anyone somehow come up with a law to pass to get them to STFU without it being unconstitutional?  It's not enough that they get tax exemptions on all the monies that they collect to run their religious criminal organizations. Again, the Family on C Street.  I personally see no reason why these religious organizations are allowed tax exemptions.  Preaching politics from the pulpit isn't a violation of anyone's First Amendment right.  But it is a violation of contract law if they do it as a 501(c)(3).

So now, it's on to History.

And we know from history, they will not be happy until all of us are brainwashed into their reality-absent, logic-twisting, make-things-up-as-you-go-along religion-wingnutism.  It's about POWER.  And to make sure they keep it, they are hell-bent with intent into child abuse - to go after those who are the most vulnerable.  
 
Where can one even begin with all of this clusterf^ck of insanity?  What can be done to keep these in-your-face religion people out of our face?  And of course this is all playing out in - where else but Texas.  
   
Let me begin with all of the good, decent, sensible hard-working residents there in Texas, who are probably just as stupefied by all of this as probably most of us will be, I know you're out there.  Please accept any apologies in advance if I make any reference that may make anyone think that Texas is a stupid state or something like that.  I'll attempt to be careful.  But unfortunately, it appears as though the majority of the populace (or at least the majority of the voters) of Texas is intent on taking you on the ride down the toilet with them.  I'm almost certain that you're trying to find your own way off of this ride. I say all the best with that.
 
   
So anyhow, now the story.  Texas nit-wit successionist nutcase Governor Rick Perry (who, honestly, is becoming more and more Michele Bachman-y every day) appointed this guy (come on, this is serious, please try not laughing) -
 title=
Doctor Don McLeroy (a dentist) as chair of the State Board of Education.  Doctor Don McLeroy does not believe in evolution, and has come to the board prepared with the Wedge Document.  In case your wondering, the Wedge Document is a recently exposed internal memo from one of our favorite organizations, The Discovery Institute.  In this memo, the Wedge implies that the court cases - in Dover, Pennsylvania (Kitzmiller v. Dover) and in Cobb County, Georgia, (Selman v. Cobb) where two different federal judges banned the teaching of Intelligent Design (creationism) in the science classes of public schools - have no bearing in Texas if they teach creationism in the science classes of their public schools.  
 
So we have this from Interrogating Nature:

In 2003 Mr. McLeroy led efforts by creationism or "intelligent design" proponents to water down discussion of evolution in proposed new biology textbooks. He was one of only four board members who voted against biology textbooks that year that included a full scientific account of evolutionary theory.

In 2004, Mr. McLeroy voted to approve "abstinence-only" health textbooks that failed to include any information about responsible pregnancy and STD prevention, despite state curriculum standards requiring that students learn such information.

 
and then this from readingeagle.co:  

The board chairman stated he does not believe in evolutionary theory and contended the Earth's appearance is a recent geologic event, only thousands of years old, rather than the 4.5 billion as scientists claim. What fossil records? ...

The concept of introducing intelligent design as an alternative to the scientifically tested theory of evolution is found in the Wedge Document, which was developed by the Discovery Institute's Center For Renewal of Science and Culture.

...the goal of the Wedge Document is to replace science as currently practiced with theistic and Christian science...

 
Is there a jim dandy to the rescue here?  Of course since the religion repugs are The Chosen, they don't think that federal rulings in Pennsylvania or Georgia have anything to do with their sacred Texas.  
 
But now it gets even better.  If somehow a judge were to stop them from teaching creationism in the science classes of the public schools, they now have an effective back-up plan.  

As per the Wall Street Journal:
 

The fight over school curriculum in Texas, recently focused on biology, has entered a new arena, with a brewing debate over how much faith belongs in American history classrooms.
The Texas Board of Education, which recently approved new science standards that made room for creationist critiques of evolution, is revising the state's social studies curriculum. In early recommendations from outside experts appointed by the board, a divide has opened over how central religious theology should be to the teaching of history.
Three reviewers, appointed by social conservatives, have recommended revamping the K-12 curriculum to emphasize the roles of the Bible, the Christian faith and the civic virtue of religion in the study of American history.

 
And of course one of the reviewers appointed by the board is this guy (alright already - laugh) -
 title=
the Reverend Peter Marshall, of Peter Marshall Ministries.  Continuing with the WSJ:
 

"We're in an all-out moral and spiritual civil war for the soul of America, and the record of American history is right at the heart of it," said Rev. Peter Marshall, a Christian minister and one of the reviewers appointed by the conservative camp
 
The conservative reviewers say they believe that children must learn that America's founding principles are biblical. For instance, they say the separation of powers set forth in the Constitution stems from a scriptural understanding of man's fall and inherent sinfulness, or "radical depravity," which means he can be governed only by an intricate system of checks and balances.

The curriculum, they say, should clearly present Christianity as an overall force for good -- and a key reason for American exceptionalism, the notion that the country stands above and apart.

 
WTF -- "radical depravity????"
 
and this from the Guardian-UK:

Another of the experts is Reverend Peter Marshall, who heads his own Christian ministry and preaches that Hurricane Katrina and defeat in the Vietnam war were God's punishment for sexual promiscuity and tolerance of homosexuals. Marshall recommended that children be taught about the "motivational role" of the Bible and Christianity in establishing the original colonies that later became the US.

"In light of the overwhelming historical evidence of the influence of the Christian faith in the founding of America, it is simply not up to acceptable academic standards that throughout the social studies (curriculum standards) I could only find one reference to the role of religion in America's past," Marshall wrote in his submission.

Marshall later told the Wall Street Journal that the struggle over the history curriculum is part of a wider battle. "We're in an all-out moral and spiritual civil war for the soul of America, and the record of American history is right at the heart of it," he said.

   
Now, how f^ck^d up is this?  Teaching this contradictory twisted-logic sh^t to inquiring, yet fundamentally logical young minds, has to qualify as some form of child abuse.  Very sad.
   
I hesitate to add that the board has also appointed some 'librul' representation as well, but how far do you think their input will really go here?
 
Anyone hear Michele Bachman spinning her head around in circles about re-education camps?  
 
The Texas school curriculum, if it goes for as it looks, probably makes about as much sense as Liz Cheney and her recent tube appearances about her not knowing what her father did in his underground bunkers, but she knows he didn't do anything illegal. (like huh? if she doesn't know what he did how can she know if...?)

So what do we know?  The kids will be the losers.  Texas will be spending needless monies defending lawsuits.  And if the wingnuts can't do what they want in the science classes, then just shift over to the history classes.  
   
I shudder to think, but here we end the diary and begin the life of a Texas public school student in their first history class:
   

                                     Texas classroom
                                         History 101 textbook

   
Chapter 1
a. about 6000 bc, Our Lord Almighty God creates the earth and started the Holy Bible.
b. Adam and Eve
   i. riding dinosaurs

Chapter 2
a. the Holy Bible
b.  Leviticus
c.  Judges
d.  The Ten Commandments
e.  Jonah and the belly of the whale

Chapter 3

a,  Jesus our Lord is born
b.  How Jesus is his own father
c.  the Virgin Mary
     i ABSTINENCE ONLY EDUCATION

Chapter 4  God bless America
a,  Shining city on the hill
b.  exceptionalism
c.  Republicans - THE CHOSEN
d.  shhhh.... abortion and teh gays
e.  Armageddon and the Rapture

Originally posted to ardyess on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 09:24 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  The whackos need to (8+ / 0-)

    go the F*** away.

  •  I'm Religious (11+ / 0-)

    And my religious views guide me in all aspects of my life, including my political views.  However, when discussing or advocating political proposals, Facts are more persuasive than my personal beliefs.

    "We know the truth, not only by the reason, but also by the heart." - Blaise Pascal

    by Dixie Liberal on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 09:40:31 AM PDT

    •  I'm pretty sure you are a good person, (9+ / 0-)

      after all, you are here on KOS.  And I have no doubt that you are sincere in your religious beliefs.  However, I'm really starting to get scared of religious people, and I know that's not good.  Yet, I keep seeing all these bad things happen in the name of religions so....

      •  You're not half as scared of them (12+ / 0-)

        as I am.  I have seen the ultraconservative political nutcases try to subvert MY church...I wish I could find the link, but a decade or more ago, there was a movement, financed by a group of Texas oilmen to lobby congregants in my denomination to force our ministers to embrace a literal interpretation of the Bible, and purge the Church of all liberal theologians.  It failed, but there is still a faction within our membership which still believes such a Heresy (IMO) would be a good thing.

        "We know the truth, not only by the reason, but also by the heart." - Blaise Pascal

        by Dixie Liberal on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 09:53:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I left the SBC after growing up in a (7+ / 0-)

          post-takeover congregation.

          I was afraid enough of the people I was in Sunday School with that apart from a few family members and family friends who still attend there, no one at my old church even knows the denomination I switched to.

          Hoping and praying that the empty chairs and empty tables in Iran when all is said and done are as few as possible.

          by Cassandra Waites on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 10:59:34 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Good for you! (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ardyess

            The problem I've always had with denominations in which the Congregation's majority vote is Supreme, is that in most cases the majority has not invested the time in study of the scriptures and their historical contextual settings to be able to make correct interpretations.  I'm Presbyterian, and we DO give the congregation a say, but not absolute authority.

            "We know the truth, not only by the reason, but also by the heart." - Blaise Pascal

            by Dixie Liberal on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 11:19:58 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm still in a congregation-supreme denomination. (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              TexMex, ardyess, Dixie Liberal

              However,

              1. The congregation's power is not unofficially-officially limited, as was happening in the SBC.
              1. My new denomination has some safeguards in place. There is a system for potential pastors to be checked and ruled okay by the denominational hierarchy, and then rechecked later on if there appears to be a problem. Churches do not have to chose only pastors that have been approved this way, but many do have in the congregational bylaws that the pastor must have this good-standing with the denomination to serve.
              1. I'm a Disciple Of Christ. My local church has more opinions on any given topic than we've got members. Besides that, the denominational and congregational rules state that we all basically agree to disagree. It's a lot harder to have misinterpretations cause problems when the group holding true to the error is not the entire congregation and cannot make dissenters shut up or leave.

              Hoping and praying that the empty chairs and empty tables in Iran when all is said and done are as few as possible.

              by Cassandra Waites on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 11:45:59 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  A friend of mine used to say: (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TexMex, grada3784, ardyess, FarWestGirl

         

                            God scares me in-doors

         

        I understood completely.

         

        Let the record be corrected: the 43rd President of the United States of America was Dick 'Dick' Cheney

        by DiegoUK on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 09:57:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  One of the big differences between here and (4+ / 0-)

        Europe as far as public perception and tolerance of religion is that, aside from the Salem Witch Trials, we've never had a religious war in the US, (genocide of the First Nations aside because there were other factors and most people don't recognise it as such). Conflicts between Catholicism, Catharism, Islam, (most of the Crusades), The Reformation and translation of the Bible into English, the Holocaust, and Northern Ireland all cost multiple wars and hundreds of thousands of lives in Europe. We don't really understand at a level of losing relatives and friends to religious violence is what is not only possible but inevitable in theocracies: The ones that aren't in your chosen group have to die. For the good of your/their souls. That's why religion needs to stay  private and personal and the hell out of government and education.

        Damn, I think this needs to be a diary.

        Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

        by FarWestGirl on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 11:22:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well, that's almost true.... (3+ / 0-)

          Roger Williams and his followers were run out of Massachusetts for their religious beliefs,  The LDS (Mormon) Church had its leader, Joseph Smith Assassinated and had to flee into the wilderness from Illinois to Utah....

          Maybe not War, but certainly a version of a pogrom.

          "We know the truth, not only by the reason, but also by the heart." - Blaise Pascal

          by Dixie Liberal on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 11:25:47 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Good examples, thanks.But exile to the wilderness (3+ / 0-)

            still doesn't have the scale of the religious wars of Europe and the Middle East. And those two are actually good examples of different ways of dealing with religious differences. In the Middle East the religions are ethnically linked and the differences are very clear, conflicts remain overt and the area continues to be volatile and unstable. In most of Europe religion has become a private and personal issue, it's bad manners in many places to ask about someone's faith, so differences are minimised in public and stability is the rule.

            Information is abundant, wisdom is scarce. The Druid

            by FarWestGirl on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 11:41:32 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  You might like (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            TexMex, Cassandra Waites, ardyess

            to read this diary
            which I wrote a while back.  An Excerpt:

            ...there is a Much bigger and more perilous point which is being completely ignored: The Reintroduction of the divisive political debate over Theological Questions into the American Political Arena. It is Precisely this danger to civil society which the Constitutional prohibition of a "religious test" for Government officials and the adoption of the First Ammendment were designed to remove from the body politic.

            "We know the truth, not only by the reason, but also by the heart." - Blaise Pascal

            by Dixie Liberal on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 11:43:34 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  got around to reading your diary (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dixie Liberal

              and you did a very good job.  I'd tip and rec if I could.  But your basic premise that we all need to stay out of each others faces with our beliefs smacks so much with logic that those who would do otherwise will just continue to do as they're doing.  It's not about logic with our right-wing Christian zealots, it's about POWER!
              And I certainly will not heed to these over-zealous, pontificating religious creeps as they get in my face, so to speak.  
              Unfortunately, this creates the condition of conflict, as you so point out.  And that can start to be scary.  So are there any suggestions on your thinking for an alternative?  
              Mine would be the immediate enforcement from the IRA to make sure that there is no politicking from the pulpit, where there is a 501(c)(3).  This is not a First Amendment rights issue, as I mentioned above, this is a contractual issue, and when a religious association  becomes a 501(c)(3), they have already agreed to restrict what is said at the pulpit in exchange for all of that tax free income.  Otherwise, pay taxes and say what the hell it is you want to say.  

              •  Two points (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ardyess

                And I realize the first one was not explicit in the Diary:

                1.  The diary was an expansion of a post I did on an open/bipartisan site, and was mostly directed at the right.
                1.  I agree that Churches which explicitly endorse or oppose specific candidates should lose their exemption...As the law currently requires.   That the law is seldom enforced is a Whole other can of worms.

                "We know the truth, not only by the reason, but also by the heart." - Blaise Pascal

                by Dixie Liberal on Mon Aug 03, 2009 at 02:50:40 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Does their version of history include how (11+ / 0-)

    Jesus stole Texas from Mexico???

    And it feels like I'm livin'in the wasteland of the free ~ Iris DeMent, 1996

    by MrJersey on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 09:42:00 AM PDT

  •  Religion should be personal and kept to ones self (11+ / 0-)

     
    I don't much care what people choose to believe, so long as they don't try to effect my life, or the lives of my children, with their beliefs.

    You can believe you talk to your Cheerios if it makes you feel better, but do please keep it to yourself.

    I neither want nor need to know.

     
    p.s. if the Cheerios talk back please tell someone

     

    Let the record be corrected: the 43rd President of the United States of America was Dick 'Dick' Cheney

    by DiegoUK on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 09:49:05 AM PDT

  •  Are these wackos going to (6+ / 0-)

    align the state tests to these standards?  If they plan to do this they are doing damage to the students who plan to attend college after completing high school since there will be a huge amount of knowledge colleges expect them to have acquired before their freshman year.  Will these same standards apply to AP courses in social studies? This is another potential problem since the tests are usually standardized, and all students are expected to possess common knowledge of social studies concepts.  I guess they also have a plan to explain why a greater number of AP students will not post a minimum score of 3 on the exam.  I foresee these and other problems with incorporating christianists "principles" into any school curriculum.  But leave it to republicans/conservatives to spin any negative results of this action as a positive result of their actions.    

  •  Utter crap (10+ / 0-)

    The curriculum, they say, should clearly present Christianity as an overall force for good -- and a key reason for American exceptionalism, the notion that the country stands above and apart.

    This reasoning for American exceptionalism always baffles me.  If Christianity is the litmus-test for exceptionalism, why shouldn't Italy or Poland be afforded the same exceptionalism?  

    respice adspice prospice

    by Steven Payne on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 10:04:54 AM PDT

  •  Gee... (7+ / 0-)

    One would hope that Dr. Don the Dentist would be too busy casting out the demons that cause tooth decay in his patients to have time for all this other stuff.

    Guess not.

    "I was so easy to defeat, I was so easy to control, I didn't even know there was a war." -9.75, -8.41

    by RonV on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 10:12:08 AM PDT

  •  NO NO A Thousand times NO (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TexMex, ardyess

    No religious intrusion into pulic school curricula.  NONE.  EVER.  There is a great risk of changing public school secular teachings/instructions on science to become tools of propaganda for specific religious beliefs.  That is not true to our history.  The Civics in this country are to be ever free from religious influence and religious dogma for they have no place in the public discussion.

    Contrary to the elitists at C-Street and right wing bureaucrats placed in other important government positions during the Bush/Cheney administration, the U.S. is not ripe to become a Christian stronghold for world dominion in the name of Jesus.  That is absolutely absurd.  That is a dream or a plan of madmen (and women).  My country lives and breathes through diversity and the youth are becoming more enlightened about the threats to freedom appearing in the guise of well meaning megachurches taking the right turn toward a christian nationalism that violates  the Constitution, its amendments and the Bill of Rights.

    The Dominionists are a cult that is marginalized, though they are getting attention.  I say shine the light on them, the roaches that they are.  When all the doubletalk and twisting and misuse of words - when all of that is truly out there, it will become more and more obvious that these believers are flawed and lost - becoming alien and threatening to the U.S. system of total separation of church and state - as deemed necessary by our Founding Fathers.

    No religious influence in public school textbooks.  No Creationism or Intelligent Design or whatever the next word these charlatans invent to push their belief onto our children who want to learn science.
    No. Never.

  •  Schools and political socialization (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TexMex, ardyess, Dixie Liberal

    Public schools have long been a vehicle for political socialization. So the part about American exceptionalism should not surprise anyone. The religious angle is an entirely different matter. On several occasions I have read where historians and/or scholars have warned against delving into history too deeply unless one is willing to accept what is revealed. Rather than gathering the facts and arriving at a conclusion, the wingnuts want to pull a conclusion out of their asses then go on a hunt to cherry pick facts to support it. But maybe I am being to harsh, what has actually happened is that they have been religiously socialized and are now attempting to cull historical facts to fit their beliefs.

    Healthcare is a human right, not a commodity.

    by nomorerepukes on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 09:13:37 PM PDT

  •  I live in Texas... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ardyess, Dixie Liberal

    ...and this is why I spend almost $9000 per child per year to send my children to secular private schools.  

    I support the idea of public education, but as someone who attended atrocious public schools, I can understand why people are fed up with them.

    Between the religious nuts and the "test 'em to death" mentality of the people on the school board, I just can't subject my kids to this corrosive environment.

    I'm fortunate I have the means to do this.  I fear for our children under the jackboots of idiots like McLeroy and others of his ilk.

    Given the political climate in Texas, I can't see any effective way to keep these crazies at bay, at least in the short term.  The nincompoops voting people like Goodhair Perry into office seem hell-bent on destroying everything that doesn't fit their very narrow view of the world.

    My only consolation is that demographics are against them and this will eventually sort itself out.

    •  I just knew there had to be some logical (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dixie Liberal

      sensible people there in Texas.  And may the demographics there sort this out sooner rather that later, because these religious zealots need to be extinguished in the electorate.  All my best to the beautiful, sensible people of Texas.

  •  Missing Poll Option (0+ / 0-)

    I'm not religious, because I think people who are religious are profoundly stupid.

    "It's all about looking for the abusive parent figure as a leader, and beating up anyone who shows a sign of weakness." -- bernardpliers

    by the tmax on Mon Aug 03, 2009 at 10:35:38 AM PDT

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