Multiple states are considering the addition of optional Bible literacy classes, allowing students to study the historical importance of the Book.
One sponsor of the bill in North Dakota, Rep. Aaron McWilliams stated, “Yeah, there is a separation of church and state, but there’s not a separation of books from education…If we don’t have a good foundational understanding of this, we’re not going to understand how the Founding Fathers of our country and other countries put it together to have the world we have today,” according to Fox News.
North Dakota, being one of six states to propose this Bible bill, including Florida, Indiana, Missouri, Virginia, and West Virginia, got some positive attention from President Trump.
Rep. McWilliams advocates for the Bible bill based off the fact that it had such an influence on how the Founding Fathers created our government. He references that our judicial system comes from Exodus 18 and the hierarchy of Judges. The moral codes that the country upholds come from the Bible, so the Book should be available as a possible history elective, according to McWilliams.
A proponent of other religious texts as possible classes, such as the Quran, Rep. McWilliams states, “without allowing a Bible into the schools, without allowing a Quran or any other religious text in the school, we look at establishing a religion of secularism in our schools.”
Facing backlash from those against the Bible bill, “State legislators should not be fooled that these bills are anything more than part of a scheme to impose Christian beliefs on public schoolchildren,” Rachel Laser, CEO of Americans United for Separation of Church and States said.
Not wasting an opportunity to slam President Trump for supporting the Bible bill, Laser stated:
While many critics seem to insinuate that the bill will be “forcing” students to take biblical classes, Rep. McWilliams highlights that these Bible literacy classes are to be taken as an optional elective for historical purposes. Schools have the option of providing these classes and students have the option of taking them.
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