Back in high school (like it was a long time ago), I can recall modestly dressed old men standing outside when school let out waiting to distribute their Gideons bibles. They were always kind, and most people returned their kindness and politely refused, took one gratiously, or courteously debated them. Yet of all this, the Gideons people were always confined to the public sidewalks outside the school.
However, it seems that this isn't enough for a school in North Carolina. The school board there recently decided that it should be allowed for the Gideons distributors to actually enter the school grounds. This goes against the school's current policy which states" may not be generally distributed by religious groups to students at school."
Chairman Shirley Babson comments that, "I just believe that we do live in a free country, and that means Christians are free too."
I honestly wonder if she'll feel the same way when other groups try to utilize their freedom. Perhaps a local Satanist group should see if they can enjoy the same rights.
She continues, saying, "I'm very concerned about the moral decline of our country, and I believe it comes on not basing our ethics and morals on what the Bible says."
I find this comment interesting given that fundamentalists frequently claim that morals should come from the home. That's the excuse given here in Kansas frequently in removing sex ed from classrooms unless parents "opt in". It's also frequently used against evolution when ID proponents claim that evolution encourages atheism. I'm sure that children are getting their dose of religion at home, as well as their weekly boosters at church. So I'm not quite sure why such people feel the need to contradict the claim that morals are best left to parents by trying to insert spiritual and moral guidance into schools.
The Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) has already written the school board pointing out that "The First Amendment requires public schools to remain neutral on religious matters, and respect the legal rights of parents to direct the religious upbringing of their children" and "Rogue school boards cannot be permitted to undermine our Constitution and proselytize small children." They have also promised a lawsuit should the school board not reverse its decision.