Oklahoma Just Wants To Protect Hobby Lobby's Right To Teach Your Kids 'Bout Jesus, No Big
From the very same state that brought us the unconstitutional law to ban even the whispered mention of Sharia comes a shiny new bill to protect Hobby Lobby's right to teach your kids about Jesus, America's greatest founding father.
Yes, that Hobby Lobby. [contextly_sidebar id="DX0tF7CXkNu0SzXSIGKdfEd5LxZ2ukVa"]
Oklahoma state Sen. Kyle Loveless (R-That's his real name, we looked it up) has introduced Senate Bill 48 to protect public schools from being sued for offering an elective to cram Jesus down your children's throats. Here's the text of the bill:
A school district and its employees and agents shall incur no liability as a result of providing an elective course in the objective study of religion or the Bible.
Sounds pretty straight-forward. Of course, Loveless has explained that it's also A Emergency! and must be implemented immediately or else ... um ... bad stuff:
It being immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health and safety, an emergency is hereby declared to exist, by reason whereof this act shall take effect and be in full force from and after its passage and approval.
Still, it's hard to see much harm in offering a class, so long as it's not a required course, that allows children to study religions. It's not as if the children will be forced to pray five times a day or have to write "I love Jesus, yes I do" on the chalkboard. But let's examine the subtext of the bill, shall we?
Loveless said the proposed bill comes after the Mustang Public School District, in suburban Oklahoma City, agreed to begin teaching an elective course with curricula provided by the Green family of Mardel and Hobby Lobby fame that would teach history from a Biblical perspective.
Whoa and pause and hang on there. It's one thing to study religious texts and history. Like, comparative religion courses? Cool. Unless those classes include, say, the non-Jesus religions too, in which case boo hiss BAD, time to "bring down a shit-storm." And heaven forfend the innocent darlings should actually visit non-Christian houses of worship, as that might lead to public ankle-covering.
But we can't help feeling the tiniest bit cynical that the Hobby Lobby's homemade hand-crafted "history" class would be anything other than a blatant attempt to indoctrinate The Children What Are Our Future with whole-cloth (not poly-blend because that's a sin) lies that the Green family, who owns Hobby Lobby, "sincerely believes" even though they are flat-out straight-up wrong. If they can invent quack "science," why wouldn't they invent quack revisionist history too? And is that the sort of thing children should be learning in public schools, even if the Green family wants to pay for it?
Still, Loveless insists there's nothing nefarious going on here.
"We are not endorsing one religion over the other," he pinky-swears.
Except we're not so sure we believe that. In fact, given the state's well-documented animosity toward other religions, we have a hard time believing this bill would protect "history" classes from a non-Jesus perspective. Why? Oh, no reason. Except for this:
However, Loveless would not give a clear answer when asked if he would support the bill if the wording changed from “or the Bible” to “or the Quran.”
“Oklahoma is a predominantly Christian state. There has been no movement to teach the Quran as an elective. I would be open to debate on the issue,” he said.
Ohhhhh. Well, if Oklahoma is a predominantly Christian state, it makes perfect sense that public schools would teach pretend history classes based on Jesus -- sponsored by a company that has a very clear record about its agenda -- but maybe not be quite so open to theoretically extending the same "First Amendment" courtesy to other religions that are not predominant in Oklahoma. If they're even religions at all.
Guess we'll just have to wait and see what the state legislature decides to do about that. And then hope and pray some activist judge calmly explains to them, again, how the First Amendment really works. And Dok Zoom needs to get his hands on a copy of the Green family's textbook.