ACLU & Austin Liberals Oppose Religious Balance Resolution, Lose; Board Passes Religion Resolution

Sep 24, 2010

1:15 p.m.  Religious Balance, anti-discrimination in textbooks Resolution passes, 7-6, conservatives lead the way. FOR: Terri Leo, Barbara Cargill, Cynthia Dunbar, Ken Mercer, David Bradley, Gail Lowe, Don McLeroy.  AGAINST: Bob Craig, Tincy Miller, Pat Hardy, Mavis Knight, Rick Agosto, Lawrence Allen.

Read the resolution here:  Antidiscrimination Resolution

Liberty Institute testifies at Texas State Board of Education to support accuracy in textbooks on world religions.

We released the following statement: 

“Liberty Institute applauds the majority of the State Board of Education for standing strong for truth and working to give students textbooks that are balanced and accurate.  

“Discrimination by the government on the basis of religion is wrong.   Religion, like any other subject, should be taught accurately.

“Conservative board members courageously rejected the pressure of the ACLU and other like-minded groups that wanted the resolution struck down.  We’re glad their liberal efforts failed.

“It is good to have an elected Board that is trying to do its due diligence to study and make sure religious discrimination is banned from our children’s textbooks.”

12:45 p.m. Pat Hardy and discussion of Jihad in 1996, had the word “struggle” but it should be different now.

Pat Hardy says there were problems with other textbooks about how Christianity is depicted in regards to the role of women.  She brought it the attention of publishers and got the information changes.

Marry Helen Berlanga is absent

Cargill makes motion, McLeroy seconds.

Cargill making the case for the resolution, pointing out disparities in how religions are presented.

McLeroy-he these textbooks back in 2002.  Judaism and Christianity is not mentioned once in the table of contents. Islam/Muslim is referenced at least 25.

Bob Craig talking about his analysis of the resolution.  Says textbook publishers say there are problems with the resolution.  Craig does not say who the “publishers” are and I see no evidence of the names of these people.  If this was true and it was so important to these people, they should have put their names out there and come to testify today.

Lawrence Allen speaking against the resolution, talking about the fact that his religion in Islam.  The statement on this issue has been made, we don’t need a resolution to accomplish the goal.

The publishers are here, they have heard our wishes.

Tincy speaking against the resolution.

Dunbar speaking about the issue, listing a long list of academics, professors who have concerns about the accuracy of how religion is being taught in textbooks.

Bob Craig amended resolution fails, 6-7

Bob Craig motion to postpone.  Fails 6-7.  Bradley, time has expired to decide.  Everyone had two months.

Hardy wants to delay until November.

Dunbar offers additional language, but then withdraws it.  It appears other members are trying to track down board member Renee Nunez, who was here earlier.  Nunez is nowhere to be found.  Resolution passed 7-6.

11:15 a.m. : Dave Welch testifying on behalf of Texas Pastors Council.  Says his group represents hundreds of pastors, “real pastors.”  He says that the Texas Freedom Network nor the Americans United for Separation of Church & State do not represent pastors.

Pat Hardy and discussion of jihad in 1996, had the word “struggle” but it should be different now.

Pat Hardy says there were problems with other textbooks about a negative of how Christianity was depicted in regards to the role of women.  She brought it to the attention of publishers and got the information changes.

10:45 a.m.: Americans United for Separation of Church & State representative just admitted that the phrase “separation of church and state” is not in the U.S. Constitution.  Wow.

10:40 a.m.  Okay, i just finished testifying.  I think I was up there for an hour.

10:15 a.m.  Texas Freedom Network testifying.  They didn’t take a position on this issue.  they registered “Other.”  Come on.  what are they hiding from?  They have made it very clear that they oppose this resolution.

10:00 a.m.  Resolution hearing about to start.

9:47 a.m.  Board is still doing congratulatory work.  Should start on resolution soon.

9:30 a.m. We’re at the Texas State Board of Education meeting.  The meeting has just begun.   One of the first items to be taken up is the resolution on balance treatment of religious groups.  Stay tuned.

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