Oklahoma Requires That The Bible Is Taught In Every Public School

Oklahoma State Superintendent Ryan Walters has announced that all public schools in the state are now required to add the Christian Bible to their curriculum — and that a physical Bible will be required in each classroom.

“We’re going to make an important announcement today regarding the Bible and the Ten Commandments,” Walters said on Thursday. “My staff has been looking at Oklahoma statute — we’ve been looking at Oklahoma academic standards — and it’s crystal clear to us that in the Oklahoma academic standards under Title 70, in multiple occasions the Bible is a necessary historical document to teach our kids about the history of this country to have a complete understanding of Western Civilization, to have an understanding of the basis of our legal system, and is frankly we’re talking about the Bible one of the most foundational documents used for the Constitution and the birth of our country.”

“We also find major points in history that refer to the Bible,” he continued. “We see multiple figures whether we’re talking about the Federalist Papers, constitutional conventional arguments, and Martin Luther King Jr. who used it as a tremendous impetus for the Civil Rights Movement and tie many of those arguments back to the Bible.”

Yes, in case you are wondering, these are the same people who want to limit schools teaching kids about topics like slavery, racism, and Civil Rights, which one could argue are also important parts of America’s history.

He then went on to outline the requirement of his statement.

“It is essential that our kids have an understanding of the Bible and it’s historical context, so we will be issuing a memo that every school district will adhere to, which is that every teacher, every classroom in the state will have a Bible in the classroom,” he said. “And we’ll be teaching from the Bible in the classroom to ensure that this historical understanding is there for every student in the state of Oklahoma in accordance with our academic standards and state law.”

The memo he mentioned outlines that the Bible will be taught at specific levels, for example, Grades 5-12.

“The Bible is an indispensable historical and cultural touchstone,” Walters wrote. “Without basic knowledge of it, Oklahoma students are unable to properly contextualize the foundation of our nation which is why Oklahoma educational standards provide for its instruction. This is not merely an educational directive but a crucial step in ensuring our students grasp the core values and historical context of our country.”

The mandate, which seems in direct violation of the separation of church and state (another foundational part of American history, Walters should know) is effective immediately.

After the memo went out, Walters responded to backlash online and elsewhere, writing, “The left is upset, but one cannot rewrite history.”

This follows a new law that was passed in Louisiana last week which will require the 10 commandments from the Bible to be displayed in every classroom. Multiple families of multiple faiths are already suing the state, and the ACLU will also fight the law.

This also follows an ongoing push from the far right to ban books in libraries in public school across the country, many specifically centered on or written by marginalized groups, such as Black people, Jewish people, or queer people. Apparently the Bible, which includes a large amount of sex, rape, and graphic violence, is totally OK!

You can watch the full video announcement below.

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