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Christian Groups Support Bible Literacy
Resolution And Reject HB 58

Front Row (left to right): State School Board Member Stephanie Bell, State Senator Hank Erwin, State Representative Jim Carns (at podium) and Eric Johnston of Southeast Law Institute. 
Second Row: Elaine Little of Eagle Forum, Margaret Brown of Eagle Forum, State Representative Greg Albritton, State Representative Bobby Humphryes and Eunie Smith of Eagle Forum (obstructed). 
Back Row: State Representative Rusty Glover, Robin Mears of Alabama Christian Education Association, State Representative Nick WIlliams, State Representative Scott Beason, John Giles of Christian Coalition of Alabama (obstructed).
MONTGOMERY — Alabama Christian Pro-Family group leaders today joined several lawmakers supporting a resolution (View draft of proposed resolution) sponsored by State Senator Hank Erwin (R) (334-242-7873) and State Representative Jim Carns (R) (334-242-7764). The family groups also called for the rejection of HB 58 proposed by Speaker of the House Seth Hammett (D) (334-242-7668) and House Majority leader Ken Guin (D) (334-242-7771).

Eric Johnston, President of the Southeast Law Institute spoke for all of the family groups and outlined several problems with the legislation (Read the memo here). Mr. Johnston shared his deep concern about the usurpation of power that would result if this bill were passed. HB 58 would allow the Alabama Legislature to take power from the State Board of Education and bypass the local school board protocol for curriculum and textbook selection.

A second major concern is the inclusion of theological questions in the textbook mandated by HB 58. Theological questions could raise serious constitutional concerns and create fertile ground for expensive lawsuits across the state.

Representative Carns (R) and Senator Hank Erwin (R) stated that HB 58 is unnecessary legislation and offered a resolution, which in essence states that it is already constitutional to teach about the Bible and its influence on history and literature in public schools.

Christian Coalition of Alabama President John Giles stated, "It is clear this is frivolous and "feel good" election year legislation - we can indeed constitutionally teach the Bible today and this legislation is absolutely unnecessary."

View Coalition Fact Sheet (PDF)

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Further Reading: Jan. 2006 Education Reporter

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