Bill mandating Bible study classes in public high schools advances

Bible
Can the Bible bill pass in 2020?

A Senate companion emerged Monday to a House bill that would mandate public high schools offer elective courses in Bible study.

This would include studies of the Old and New Testaments, as well as Hebrew Scripture.

SB 746, filed by Ocala Republican Sen. Dennis Baxley, would require — rather than just permit, as is the case now — high schools to offer an “objective study of religion.”

Such courses include:

— “A course on the Hebrew Scriptures and Old Testament…”

— “A course on the New Testament…,” and

— “A course on the Hebrew Scriptures, the Old Testament of the Bible, and the New Testament of the Bible.”

They would still be electives: If the bill passes, however, the state’s public schools would have to offer these, but no one student would be required to take them.

Rep. Kim Daniels, a Jacksonville Democrat and professional evangelist, filed the House version.

Similar legislation is being considered or has been passed elsewhere.

According to the USA Today, “Bible literacy bills have been introduced in Indiana, Missouri, North Dakota, Virginia and West Virginia.”

Kentucky, meanwhile, has legislation much like that proposed by Baxley, who failed to get traction with this in the 2019 Session.

Baxley is carrying another bill, also with a Jacksonville House sponsor for the companion, that seeks to promote social uplift.

On Monday, a Senate companion emerged for a House proposal for a state sanctioned “Guide to a Healthy Marriage.”

Baxley will attempt to carry SB 682 through a Senate that thus far has not seen it as a legislative priority despite multiple airings.

The bill has a number of components.

If ratified, it would create a “Marriage Education Committee.” This committee would include six “marriage and family advocates.”

These worthies would help formulate this guide.

The guide will be paid for with private funds and having access to it would be a prerequisite for a marriage license.

The publication would address “conflict management, communication skills, family expectations, financial responsibilities and management, domestic violence resources, and parenting responsibilities.”

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." He can be reached at [email protected]


7 comments

  • Lisa S.

    November 4, 2019 at 3:42 pm

    “It’s no coincidence that many preachers-cum-legislators are proposing these bills and that the proponents are professing religious purposes. These laws are not intended to showcase the national motto or inspire patriotism. They are the thin edge of a Christian nationalist wedge, the proverbial camel’s nose under the tent.

    This is no secret. Several Christian nationalist groups, including the Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation and Wallbuilders (a propaganda outfit run by the notorious David Barton), have banded together to push for a number of state bills promoting religion under the ominous germanic moniker, ‘Project Blitz.’

    The overarching goal of Project Blitz is to legislate Christianity, starting with seemingly more innocuous laws, such as the posting of the national motto, and progressing to laws that privilege the Christian majority, often by portraying it as a persecuted minority. Project Blitz is Christian nationalism masquerading as religious liberty. It’s a ‘legislative assault . . . meant to reshape America.’ So far, we’ve seen more than 70 Project Blitz bills proposed in about 20 states.”

    https://ffrf.org/news/news-releases/item/32798-project-blitz-targets-schoolchildren-with-godly-agenda

    • matthew lusk

      November 5, 2019 at 10:17 am

      It’s not unusual for public educators to teach “evolutionary theory” as if it is the Gospel truth. Lisa S., have you ever voiced your complaint about this? Teaching that Christianity is not true is the same as teaching that Christianity is true under separation ideology. Here in Florida, our 5th district Congressman, Al Lawson, has cosponsored a bill to Make Charles Darwin a national holiday. I supposed he thinks his mother evolved from an ape-like creature. Why should parents not be made responsible to purchase their on children’s education where ever they want? They buy their food, their jeans, their dvds. Why not education? Put the responsibility where the responsibility belongs.

  • No More Republicans!

    November 4, 2019 at 3:53 pm

    Bogus BU**SH**!

    Morality or Christianity can’t be legislated – and Humpty Trumpty and his henchmen (obviously especially including his goombahs already in prison or soon to be going into prison) are prime proof of that. Most Republicans are pure hypocrites on this issue – and have been over my entire lifetime!

    Fugeddaboudit!

    • matthew lusk

      November 5, 2019 at 9:57 am

      True, pure morality can not be legislated cost effectively, but a certain level of morality or Christianity can be. Christianity espouses moral ideals. A Christian precept labeled a moral precept, without using the word “Christian,” passes Constitutional muster, no? America’s founders professed Christianity, though all fell short to some degree in execution, as we all do. Rape, murder, burglary are breaches of morality for which penalties can be instituted. In our constitutional republic, we vote for representatives who legislate the penalties for breaches of morality. Granting that one man’s immorality may be another man’s pleasure, morality still has a play in legislation; otherwise the “wild west” and the power of the gun rules the events of the day, whether large or small, collective or singular. This Republican, Matthew Lusk, wishes to legalize immoral breaches of the law concerning self abuse. If you want your dope, you can have your dope. If you want your whore, you can have your whore. If you want to teach your children, you can teach your children. You say “no more Republicans” and “most Republicans.” These are two different quantities. Most Republicans on the street are not happy with most Republicans in office. Nor are Democrats happy with most Democrats in office. It would be better to explain your animus against Christianity to get your point across. Otherwise one assumes you are homosexual and that is your animus.

  • Zu Peppino

    November 5, 2019 at 6:48 am

    The evangelical evil devils are once again pushing their false christian religion on everybody else. If they’re going to go that way they need to mandate studying the Talmud, the Quran, the Book of Shadows, and the Vedas as well.

  • matthew lusk

    November 5, 2019 at 8:56 am

    The bill is nonsense, poorly written, and mandates neutrality and accommodation to all views which defines nothing but also leaves the door open to indoctrinated pantheism or jihadism. Public education is already littered with agendas. The less brainwashing the better. More power to parents, less power to governing political factions.

  • Sonja Emily Fitch

    November 5, 2019 at 2:25 pm

    GOT TO THE CHURCH OF YOUR CHOICE. USE THE BIBLE OF YOUR CHOICE AT HOME AND CHURCH. SCHOOLS ARE FOR THE COMMON GOOD. ALL ARE TO BE RESPECTED. THERE IS NO ONE RELIGION. THERE IS NO ONE BIBLE. THAT IS WHY YOU HAVE THE CHOICE TO CHOSE YOUR CHURCH , YOU BIBLE OR NOT. SCHOOLS ARE FOR ALL OF THE PEOPLE..THAT IS THE BASIS OF OUR CONSTITUTION…THERE IS NO STATE BIBLE OR COUNTRY BIBLE. WE IN AMERICA CAN CHOOSE. WE IN AMERICA HAVE SCHOOLS TO TEACH THE COMMON GOOD FOR ALL.

Comments are closed.


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