Freedom of religion does not mean freedom from religion' 

I would suggest to Karen Webb (Letters, "Teaching Bible in Oklahoma schools," March 31, 2010, Gazette) to research the history of the founding of this great nation with an emphasis on the religious identities of our Founding Fathers and the nation at large.

As of 1787, 99.8 percent of the population was Christian, of various denominations, and 0.2 percent was Jewish. Further, nine of the 13 colonies/states had established and state-supported religions well into the 19th century.

The First Amendment Establishment Clause has been stretched, bent and misinterpreted to the point that the Free Exercise Clause has almost been forgotten. On the personal front, George Washington had a prayer diary; Thomas Jefferson went to worship services in the House of Representatives, and Benjamin Franklin requested that the Constitutional Convention begin with a prayer (the prayer itself often lasting up to two hours itself), to name just three of our Founding Fathers.

Of the nation's universities, many, to include all of the Ivy League colleges, were established as religious universities. Many schools from 1600 to the signing of our Constitution (and beyond) had the sole purpose of teaching the young to read and understand the Bible.

I know of no one who is advocating going back to the 18th century to teach our children by using the Bible. However, wouldn't it be better for our children to get an accurate history of our nation and its founding, rather than the politically correct drivel coming out today?

Further, why is it that Jay Leno can do "Jaywalking" segments that show people who don't know Canada or Mexico borders the United States, or don't know the history of this great nation? Ask your children to find a country in Europe sometime, and maybe you will learn something about the current state of education in our state.

Indoctrination does our children no good, further erodes their ability to think critically in the future and worsens our nation's outlook for that future. Let's help them out, by giving them the best possible education (which they deserve), not the politically correct education that belongs in the Dumpster.

As the old saying goes, those who refuse to read history are doomed to repeat it. Also, freedom of religion does not mean freedom from religion.

"Douglas L. Thompson
Oklahoma City

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