Tennessee Republican Wants To Make The Bible The Official State Book

Bible for Tennessee storyWhen I see these headlines, I always say to myself “please don’t let it be Louisiana, please don’t let it be Louisiana, please don’t let it be Louisiana!” as I go to click the link. After all, with Bobby Jindal running the state (when he’s not off on yet another Iowa visit), you never know what might happen here. Even if it wasn’t Jindal, there’s always some backwater politician like Lenar Whitney who’s just dying to become the newest crusader for Christianity against the dark forces of Satan, liberals, and those godless atheists who want to take your guns and make your kids gay via Common Core math.

(Speaking of Common Core math, I suck at anything beyond basic algebra and it took me all of about 5 minutes to figure out how to teach it to an ADHD 8-year-old kid. I guess that means I’m part of the communist, socialist plot to finally bring Louisiana kicking and screaming into the 21st century.)

Anyhow, here’s what’s going on up in Tennessee:

A Tennessee lawmaker wants to make the Bible the “official state book.”

Representative Jerry Sexton, a Republican from Bean Station, is sponsoring legislation adding the Bible to the state symbols of Tennessee.

It’s unclear whether the proposal would meet separation of church and state provisions in the federal and state constitutions. (Source)

Most of these measures don’t have much of a chance to make it out of committee, let alone the state House of Representatives. Even if it got all the way to the governor and it was signed, why would anyone introduce something so blatantly in violation of the 1st Amendment which would be struck down very quickly by any federal court? It’s simple – these lawmakers are putting in these bills to keep their credibility with the religious right that believes that the United States was founded on Christianity and that the Bible trumps the Constitution.

The religious right believes that as our country moves forward, it is moving away from “traditional values” and the only way to take America back is to try to ban yoga pants, bust up the unions, and coerce kids to pray in school. Just this week, the chief justice of Alabama’s Supreme Court chose to stand in defiance of a federal ruling which allowed same-sex marriages to be performed in Alabama. This isn’t his first rodeo either. Roy Moore lost his job as chief justice previously for refusing to remove the Ten Commandments from the Judicial Building, only to have the voters of Alabama put him right back into that position again. Yes, they elect judges to the Supreme Court in Alabama, don’tcha know?

Meanwhile back in Tennessee, these same legislators have also blocked Medicaid expansion since taking care of the poor is apparently a lot harder to do than to propose meaningless bills to honor the Bible. These are the same folks who want to make it harder for people to vote, use their EBT cards or get medical care – because Jesus said “life is not one huge hospital.” Oh wait, I’m sorry, that was Ayn Rand.

So here’s yet another pointless and unconstitutional bill that is sponsored by lawmakers who know it will die in committee but do it anyhow in order to keep the religious base happy and get elected again. This is why we can’t have good government, and as long as liberal and progressive voters stay home and remain apathetic, we will continue to see more stories like this.


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