FFRF asks Texas Board of Education to delete bogus Moses reference czimmerman@ffrf.org (Casandra Zimmerman) News Release Archives – Freedom From Religion Foundation – Freedom From Religion Foundation

Read More News Release Archives – Freedom From Religion Foundation – Freedom From Religion Foundation The Freedom From Religion Foundation, on behalf of its Texas membership, is urging the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) to remove from its history curricula bogus references about the so-called influence of the biblical character, Moses, upon the U.S. Founders. The SBOE is reassessing social studies teachings under its Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills, also known as TEKS. Students are being taught that Moses was an “individual[] whose principles of law and government institutions informed the American founding documents.” This is categorically false, insists the national state/church watchdog, which calls it insulting to put a mythical figure like Moses alongside serious historical political thinkers like William Blackstone, John Locke and Charles de Montesquieu. A study of the TEKS curriculum found that it paints Native Americans and African Americans as mere victims, not contributing to the founding of the nation. It is unacceptable to give credit to Moses, an ancient mythical figure, for influencing the nation’s Founders while consciously disregarding the nation’s founding communities. The U.S. Constitution is a godless document, with no references to a deity, much less Moses or the Ten Commandments, note Co-Presidents Dan Barker and Annie Laurie Gaylor in a letter to Keven Ellis, the chair of the board. “The very First Commandment, ‘Thou shalt have no other gods before me,’ is the antithesis of the Constitution’s First Amendment. In the United States, citizens are free to have as many gods as they like or none at all. It is not the business of the government to dictate or endorse god belief,” they add. In order to provide Texas students with accurate information, SBOE must remove miseducation about Moses from the Texas curriculum standards, and impart factual information to its 5.4 million public school students.  “These students are the future of this country, which was founded on the basis of freedom of, and necessarily, freedom from religion in government and public schools,” FFRF says. Teaching students false, biased information about American history particularly stigmatizes and alienates nonreligious students. About a third of U.S. teens (32 percent) say they are religiously unaffiliated, including 6 percent who describe themselves as atheists, 4 percent who are agnostics and 23 percent who say their religion is “nothing in particular.” An SBOE work group has recommended removing the required mentions of Moses, with a draft of the full board’s recommended changes expected in July, and a final board vote in November.Read FFRF’s letter hereFFRF is a national nonprofit organization with more than 37,000 members across the country, including more than 1,500 members in Texas, and a regional chapter. FFRF protects the constitutional separation between state and church and educates about nontheism.Photo credit CC BY-SA 4.0