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‘Teacher fired for saying the Bible should not be taken literally’

September 24, 2007

“I’m just a little bit shocked myself that a college in good standing
would back up students who insist that people who have been through
college and have a master’s degree, a couple actually, have to teach
that there were such things as talking snakes or lose their job.” Link

16 comments

  1. This reminds me of what recently happened to Bill Nye (The Science Guy):

    http://bsalert.com/artsearch.php?fn=2&as=1990&dt=1

    Long story short: Bill quotes the bible, saying “God made two great lights — the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night.” and then explains that the moon is not actually a source of light, but simply reflecting the sun’s light.

    At which point the people of Waco Texas “boo” him.

    Hahaha.


  2. I love the North American small town articles that read like something out of Private Eye’s “It’s a Funny World” when they close it with the line of: ‘What’s next? Whales talk French at the bottom of the sea?’

    Other Biblical things to be taken with solemn literal acceptance:
    – Methuselah live for 969 years
    – Lot offered house his daughters to Sodomite house intruders to prevent them from molesting his guests
    – Moses forced the people to eat the ground-down golden calf as punishment for inventing this false deity

    Incidentally, I too was fired for saying that Jesus was gay … but he was my boss at the time, so I think he was within his rights. He was also shit at playing the trombone. There, I said it.


  3. what a joke! these kind of stories really get my back up. I’m not sure I entirely understand what basis the students would have to call their attorneys – can you sue someone over a difference of opinion?


  4. Shocked? It’s just another news story from the country that FREAKS me out on a daily basis.


  5. I don’t think the teacher should have been fired, but I think it was a dumb thing to say, because even parables are literal in some way.


  6. @ Paul: You get freaked out? I live here.

    There is even a Creation Museum that recently opened in Kentucky.


  7. The story might not be what it seems. One of the students in the class has said that the complaint was not about the teacher’s opinions nor the content of his teaching but rather about bullying and humiliating behaviour. This student also says that they did not seek his dismissal.


  8. “Even parables are literal in some way”? I’ve been trying to find some way of replying to this, but…words fail me.


  9. I think my favourite quote in that article has to be “From my point of view, what they’re doing is essentially teaching their students very well to function in the eighth century.”

    @sevnetus: Parables are not literal in any way. They’re supposed to illustrate an abstract concept in a way that uses familiar situations to simplify the idea. If it was a literal story, it wouldn’t be much use.


  10. How long before we have “ClaimsDirect” type TV ads pitching the line – “Have your religious views been scotched, ridiculed, or even just plain disproved? Have you suffered emotional distress because someone actually dared question your beliefs? Don’t worry, with our no-win-no-fee easy arrangement (terms may apply)you can easily sue your intellectual superiors into bankruptcy”. You know it’s going to happen on a daytime TV channel sometime soon!


  11. Only loosely connected, but an American teacher was forced to resign last week after giving one of his pupils a Daniel Clowes book. A book her father insisted was “borderline pornography”.

    http://nymag.com/daily/entertainment/2007/09/parents_of_connecticut.html


  12. Wow…just wow. I was already freaked out when the Creation Museum opened but this is getting way too far. Can you imagine the future generations of students, all firmly believing that we do not evolved but were created and stuff like that.
    I’m so glad I’m in France and not in this country, I couldn’t stand to be slapped by religion like this.


  13. At Sunday school (in Somerset, England, since you ask) I distinctly remember Miss Barker referring to the realisation that you could be washed clean of sin as her “road to Domestos moment”.

    Since then I’ve been an atheist, thank God.


  14. Self congratulation around a Borat-style american creationist straw-man bonfire… you’re bound to feel warm if you move close.


  15. Warm? No. Scared? Yes.


  16. This is related to Religion, so it’s not off topic!

    I would like to adapt Father Ted for the Amateur stage (we have done very successful versions of Dad’s Army (now being done professionally), It Ain’t Half Hot Mum, Porridge, Hi De Hi – all original adaptions) and I would like / need your (Graham’s) permission to do this.

    The show, I think would be great fun to do, and we would adapt the original scripts etc.

    Please contact me (or reply to this).

    Thanks (feel free to delete this post!)



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