Whodathunkit? Moses the actual inspiration for American government

Whodathunkit? Moses the actual inspiration for American government November 22, 2014

Although climate change denial was removed from textbooks, our school board has stubbornly stuck to it’s guns on including Christianity and Judeo-Christian values (Moses specifically) as the inspiration for America’s form of government.

All right all right don’t rush me, I’m-a-thinkin’ … and my head hurts”
All right all right don’t rush me, I’m-a-thinkin’ … and my head hurts”

Our students and teachers will be stuck with erroneous textbooks for 10 years! Not just Texas either, some states adopt our textbooks. One major publisher Houghton Mifflin even withdrew their books from consideration over their insistence on keeping Moses in an American history book. This is the standard that stumped them.

The standards are called the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills and were created in 2010. They state that high school students in U.S. government are expected to “identify the individuals, whose principles of laws and government institutions informed the American founding documents, including those of Moses, William Blackstone, John Locke, and Charles de Montesquieu.”

 

What is even more irksome is that the board was talking to publishers after public testimony ended Tuesday making last minute changes that the public including historians had no input on.

What now? The only way left to stop this theocratic encroachment is for a secular organization to sue to have Texas to do right by its students. We’ll keep you posted on developments. Also there is a petition to repeal the textbooks. The last petition with 40,000 signatures was delivered by Zack Kopplin during the testimony Tuesday.  The publishers did heed scientists and those who signed the climate change denial petition. It’s something.

 

 

 

 

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  • blf

    Pol Pot has a better claim then (the probably mythical) Mr Moses as an influence on USAlienstan laws, or at least on how the policegoons are currently enforcing them, and how the recently elected thug buggers want to rewrite / reinterpret them.

  • Not just Texas either, some states adopt our textbooks.

    One can only hope Texas does not have the influence over textbooks adopted nationally it once did.

  • L.Long

    I know this word is of no importance to the Liars4Jesus but what PROOF do they give that a part of the moses myth is in our gov’mint??? Our gov’mint is many time more closely related to the old Iroquois Nation than to to the Book o’BS the Liars4Jesus use.

  • grumpyoldfart

    Christians have been getting their own way since they first gained political power in about 400AD. This current mob will never give up. They’ll just keep niggling away until they get what they want.

    • We just have to keep educating through populist media like youtube, podcasts, and blogs. Every atheist is one less fundamentalist. It seems like a huge task I know. Plus, a lot of this crap is coming from baby boomers, who are on average more religious and dying off. Millennials are equal in size to this generation because of immigration and a 1/3 are nonreligious.

      • Robert, not Bob

        ‘Course since none of those millennials bother to vote it doesn’t matter all that much how secular they are…

        • It will matter when a few more religious baby boomers have died off.

        • Narf

          Yeah, it’s currently a bit of a problem, Robert. Hopefully we can get more of them to freaking step up, once they get closer to their 30’s. The voter turnout for this past year was freaking pathetic. Something needs to snap the younger voters out of their apathy, because I think a lot of them simply see the start of the ad barrage and duck-and-cover until it’s over.

          I practically had to stay off of YouTube for about two weeks, but in my case, I had already voted before the ad assault began in earnest.

  • sandi seattle

    With some clear thinking, I can see an argument that the 6th 7th 8th and 9th Commandments are a part of our law, in much more complicated form of course, and Moses is believed to have been the one to give those laws to the Jews. I see no problem with a unit of a history text acknowledging that origin.

    • Narf

      A few problems …

      First, the Bible isn’t even close to the first text to codify that sort of code of conduct. Moreover, those who wrote the Bible didn’t even independently come up with that code of conduct on their own. They were influenced by earlier codes, such as the code of Hammurabi. The selection of Moses as the influence is blatantly chauvinistic against non-Judeo-Christian influences.

      Second, you say that Moses is believed to have been the one to give those laws to the Jews.

      No. No, he isn’t … not by anyone educated on the subject of biblical archaeology. The consensus of archaeology is that Moses never existed, and the Jews were never in Egypt as described by the Old Testament. Abraham never existed as written in the Bible, and the biblical record of everything prior to a few generations after David and Solomon is hopelessly riddled with anachronism.

      Call me funny, but I have an issue with our textbooks acknowledging the contribution of fictional people to our real founding documents. Giving an actual Moses credit for doing anything real, in a book of supposed nonfiction, is a farce.

    • Roxor128 .

      And amusingly, the 9th commandment is the one most frequently violated by Christians, especially when dealing with atheists.

      I think violation of it is called “perjury” in legal circles, and one of the most common manifestations of it is the False DMCA Take-down Notice.

      • Narf

        Or 8, depending upon how you count them. But yeah, I knew what you meant.

        Hell, it goes back even further than that. If you read one of the more popular Christian apologetics books, you’ll come across dozens of instances in each book. Every time you see a creationist give the eye quote out of Origin of Species; every time the gospels are represented as eye-witness testimony, they’re bearing false witness.

        What I find even funnier are the “science” websites that have a statement of faith in their About section. I’m sorry, but the moment you admit that your organization has a statement of faith, you’ve admitted that you’re not doing science. That only counts as honesty in that they’re admitting that they’re dishonest, to anyone who really understands what science is. Considering the scientific ignorance of their readers, I don’t count that.

  • mistertwo

    I think the publishers are much more able now to provide different books for different states than they used to be.

    That said, if I were a history teacher I think I would work with the Moses requirement by introducing the Code of Hammurabi and the Code of Ur-Nammu, showing how people first started codifying laws, in the process showing that the Law of Moses was nowhere near the first such law.

  • JW

    The inclusion of William Blackstone is a more subtle nod to the religious right. They like Blackstone because he tries to root the Common Law in a religious tradition going back to revealed law and natural law. It’s ironic they want him as an influence on the founding documents, since Jefferson explicitly stated that he didn’t like using Blackstone’s work as a text for law students, but only found it useful for a general review at the end of their education.

  • John Thimakis

    I’m just glad we don’t have this kind of problem in Australia (I am not aware of any). All nations try to rewrite their own history but in the US it seems to change every decade.