Ed Brayton examines WorldNetDaily's recent attack on the Bible Literacy Project curriculum -- led by an April 10 article by Bob Unruh and column by Alabama state Sen. Beason, who is an adviser for a competing Bible curriculum program, the National Council on Bible Curriculum in Public Schools -- for not being right-wing enough. Brayton calls WND's attack "false and illogical," taking quotes out of context and playing guilt by association by recycling ad hominem arguments and guilt-by-association attacks on Charles Haynes, one of 40 people that reviewed the project's content.
Surprisingly, WND published a substantive response to its attacks in the form of an April 15 column by Bible Literacy Project general editor Cullen Schippe. Schippe points out that WND's attacks are "deeply misinformed and contain falsehoods and misleading, out-of-context statements":
Despite Beason's insistence, "The Bible and Its Influence" has never been supported or endorsed by the ACLU or People for the American Way. This statement is absolutely wrong. Yet our course has never suffered a legal challenge, because it is widely acknowledged that it is both respectful of the Bible as a sacred text and completely First-Amendment-safe for public schools.
Beason argues that a reference to renowned Christian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky's "The Brothers Karamazov" is irrefutable evidence of the Bible Literacy Project's promotion of communism. But the textbook, which explains the influence of the Bible on Western literature, history and culture, actually points out the murderous legacy of communism (page 65).
By the way, neither Beason nor Unruh disclosed Beason's status as an adviser for a competing cuirriculum in their articles. But then, WND has always had a problem with disclosing conflicts of interest.
By the way, Chuck Norris is also a promoter of the evangelical-leaning National Council on Bible Curriculum in Public Schools; last year, we wrote about his having to walk back the claim (read: inadvertently telling the truth) that the goal of the program is to "get God back into your public school."