It should come as no secret to long time readers of this blog that I believe wholeheartedly in the separation of church and state. I think that mixing the two creates multiple issues and many problems that need not exist. We have discussed the problems with intelligent design and why it is very possible that our existence is due to the flying sphagetti monster.
I have offered my thoughts about appropriate holiday greetings and religous misunderstanding and religious hyperbole. So based upon these items you probably think that you know exactly what I am going to say about using a high school textbook to teach the bible in public school.
Well, this may surprise you but based upon my understanding of this book I am not automatically opposed to it. If it adheres to the description in the story I linked to I would be open to it.
“Now, a new textbook for high school students aims to fill a gap by teaching the Bible, both the Old and New Testaments, in a non-sectarian, nonreligious way as a central document of Western civilization with a vast influence on its literature, art, culture and politics.”
However I am skeptical about the schools and instructors within the schools. Specifically I am concerned that there will be teachers who deviate from the curriculum and teach the course as in a religous manner and that is unacceptable to me.
From the perspective of understanding the influence of it on literature, on art, on society in general I can see a purpose in such a course. But in the end I am greatly troubled by the potential for misuse and abuse and this may be yet another time where the smartest and most judicious move would be to err on the side of safety and not teach this course in public schools.