Dr. Thomas Udager
Board Vice Chair, Family Heritage Alliance
The American colonist’s believed it was necessary to build a moral culture in their communities if their experiment in self-government was to be successful. Their schools taught the moral values of Jesus Christ as recorded in the New Testament. Thomas Jefferson professed that, “The teachings of Jesus Christ are the most sublime moral instruction known to man”. Ruth Feldman in her book “Don’t Whistle in School,” says that schools in the original 13 colonies opened and closed their day with prayer. The first qualification for a teacher was that he or she be a Christian. The primary purpose of education was to teach the students to read so that they could study God’s word in the Bible. Benjamin Franklin believed that “only a virtuous people are capable of freedom”.
In the mid-19th century Charles Darwin wrote “Origin of Species,” in which he speculated that man was not created by God. Secularists, who do not have a moral base of faith in God, took encouragement from his writing and began a campaign to remove the influence of the Bible from public schools, but even as late as the 1950’s Christian moral values still shaped young students in our schools.
In 1963 the Supreme Court removed prayer from public schools and in 1980 they removed the Ten Commandments. Secularism became the new religion in our schools and morality and scholarship have both declined to this day. Alexander Solzhenitsyn was asked why there has been cultural decay in western nations and he replied, “Man has forgotten God, that is why this has happened.”
Without moral direction in our schools over the last 50 years, we have come to the tragedy of Columbine. The Colorado State Board of Education, after serious introspection in the wake of that tragedy, issued a letter stating in part, “We must remember, respect, and unashamedly take pride in the fact that our schools like our country, found their origin and draw their strength from the faith based morality that is at the heart of our national character. Today our schools have become so fearful of affirming one religion or value over another that they have banished them all. In doing so they have abdicated their historic role in the moral formation of our youth and thereby alienated themselves from our people’s deep spiritual sensibilities.”
The Colorado State Board of Education is saying that this nation and our schools were founded upon the principles of the Christian faith, and the strength of our character comes from the moral teachings of the Bible. Our schools and we as adults have failed to train our young people “in the way that they should go” (Prov. 22:6). The Colorado Board is challenging us to have the courage to stand and right the wrong that is devastating our young people.
The Family Heritage Alliance is based in Rapid City, South Dakota and exists to Champion the Judeo-Christian Values of Faith, Family and Freedom. The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various authors on this website do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the Family Heritage Alliance or the official policies of the Family Heritage Alliance.