By Bill Maher
I want to talk about an unusual story out of Tennessee -- unusual in the sense that there was a dispute and no one got shot. A dad down there is hopping mad because his daughter's World Studies class had scheduled a field trip to an Islamic mosque and a Hindu temple to teach the kids about the religions of other cultures and he thought this was pushing "Islamic tolerance" on the kids. Because that's the real danger of coming to understand someone who's not like you -- it could lead to tolerating them.
Anyway, the guy's kid was excused from the field trip due to his protest and was given an alternate written assignment instead. But she still refused to do it because she felt it was too Muslim-y. As she wrote on the assignment sheet, “Due to the surplus of information on Muhammad and Islam, and the lack of information on Christ and Gandhi, I can’t complete the assignment."
Imagine that, a World Studies class having the gall to try and make the students experience the world. "No thank you. I'll be here at home with my dad and Jesus."
How fear-based and close-minded do you have to be to feel threatened by new information that may or may not reinforce your preconceived notions about another culture? Christians can be like children at bedtime who want to hear the same story over and over again -- even though they have a whole bookshelf of other storybooks -- because the story they know by heart is the one that comforts them.