I recall riding on a bus to D.C. and on the trip there was a lady reading a book about the Christian version of math. I found the idea rather strange that there was a definite biblical view distinctly different from the secular view of math.
The creationism issue has rapidly gained momentum in the nation, in contrast to evolution taught in biology class. I have found the literature promoted in home-school and Christian-academy circles also has a different slant to social studies–some quite alarming.
Early Religious Right leader Billy Hargis, like his John Birch Society friends, believes that Joe McCarthy was a great American hero vindicated by secret Soviet documents.
I have run into some Southern Baptist fundamentalist leaders who charge that Martin Luther King was a fraud.
Such points of reference tend to give a decided slant to text books produced to please the crowd’s opinions. The Texas State School board had conflict with Religious Right members who objected to social studies books that depicted the lifestyles of Native Americans in an “anti-settler” position. There were further objections to anti-environmental opinions expressed.
In 1994, one of the board members was enraged at the photo of a woman with a briefcase. This scene was alleged to promote anti-family values.
Right-wing school favorite, Bob Jones University, published textbooks saying the 1954 Brown vs. Board of Education ruling on desegregation was falsely decided.
Meanwhile the A Beka book on American history teaches gradeschoolers that the Supreme Court has ignored our Christian heritage in recent rulings on church and state.
A Dallas reporter drew the wrath of many in the movement for comments made after publishing some alarming opinions expressed in “Christian” textbooks promoted for the movement.
Among offending statements was a publisher who stated the “most marked development in modern Texas” is “the growth of church schools.”
The publishers explained the election of Bill Clinton as, “To some Americans, a healthy economy is more important than the moral fiber of their country.” Baptist Sunday school teacher Jimmy Carter is described as someone who “claimed to be a believer.” The science book says there is only a choice between evolution and God.
Such slanted viewpoints are not the sort of things one would find in public schools. Ironically it is the focal complaint that the humanistic viewpoints of public education are the reason why Christian parents must practice an “exodus” from public education.
The list grows even more scary. Vision Forum publishes a catalogue for the crowd with a young man holding a sword in his hand under the publication’s title “A Line in the Sand.”
Inside the catalogue are such gems as a book by Nancy Campbell telling young Christian women they must be fruitful and multiply as often as possible. Practicing such birth rates helps to accomplish the Dominion theme of the author.
Reconstructionist authors (folks who believe Christians are mandated to takeover the state) list books about the true causes of the Civil War. The works are obviously slanted to a Southern viewpoint by men who advocate slavery is a modern grand biblical idea.
Other works advocate the idea that the nation is officially a Christian nation. Several Reconstructionist authors are promoted with the ideas expressed in the catalogue that young boys must be taught to grow up to take dominion of the state. Separation of church and state is a non-biblical idea, much like the view that democracy is for cowards.
Military themes are common in the titles of books. Young boys are encouraged to defend the honor of their sisters. Women are taught that they are to submit unto their husband’s wishes. Toy models of crusader knights are sold with the advice, “Now your little crusader can defend home and family with these magnificently hand-painted figurines.”
Other works I have stumbled upon want to paint Lincoln as a tariff traitor who hated blacks. One author stated the real glory days of the nation resided in the Antebellum South.
Parents might want to check into the kind of literature used in teaching your children in Christian academies and what is being promoted as authentic home school literature.
I have often heard people complain about what is being taught in public schools. To be honest, I haven’t yet heard of many items as far out as these examples.
Don Wilkey is pastor of First Baptist Church in Onalaska, Texas.