Action Alert

Tell Statehouse to dump bible bill

Kill shameful “bible as state book” bill

1BibleAn outrageous bill to designate "The Holy Bible" as the "official state book" has been introduced in the West Virginia House. Please take action against this unconstitutional attempt by zealous legislators to force Christianity upon West Virginians, regardless of their religious - or nonreligious - preferences.

House Bill 2568 is both illegal and fiscally irresponsible, as it would almost certainly result in a preventable lawsuit that would cost state taxpayers dearly. Moreover, the "good book" is a misnomer. The bible is rife with violence, misogyny, homophobia, genocide, slavery and intolerance of nonbelievers. The state that has been home to authors such as Pearl S. Buck, Booker T. Washington and Henry Louis Gates Jr. should have no trouble choosing a more appropriate state book that creates no First Amendment conflicts. Please take action against this legislative affront. Read FFRF's statement about the bill here, "FFRF calls W.Va. bill to make bible state book an affront". 

CONTACT

HB 2568 is currently pending in the House Judiciary. Please call and/or email your state representative today to voice your opposition to a bill that will result in preventable lawsuits and the violation of religious freedom by bible-thumping theocrats. (We also encourage you to speak out against it on social media or in a letter to your editor.)

Let our simple automated contact system contact him or her for you via phone or email. The wording in the automated comment section is editable. The wording in the automated comment section is editable. Please feel free to add your own thoughts to personalize the message text, subject heading or signature.

(Keep reading if you wish to learn more about the bill.)

BACKGROUND

HB 2568 would invite a lawsuit similar to the one filed earlier this year by the Freedom From Religion Foundation against bible classes in Mercer County in the state. In its federal suit, FFRF notes that it is not the government's role to promote one religious book over others or religion generally over nonreligion. Encouraging citizens to read and learn from the bible is not a goal to be pursued by those holding secular government positions. 
Religious faith is a matter for private conscience, not state endorsement. In his decision upholding the Freedom From Religion Foundation's challenge of Christian indoctrination in Rhea County public schools in Tennessee, Chief U.S. District Judge R. Allan Edgar of Chattanooga noted: "A state-created orthodoxy puts at grave risk freedom of belief and conscience, which is the sole assurance that religious faith is real, not imposed." 

"This level of zealotry among the state legislators sponsoring this bill is shameful," says FFRF Co-President Dan Barker. "They were elected to represent all West Virginians, not just those in the religious majority. An ever-growing portion of the population (almost one-fourth of Americans) identifies as nonreligious. Legislators who take an oath of office to uphold the U.S. Constitution in all its godlessness apparently have never bothered to examine it."

The West Virginia Statehouse must stop attempting to foist Christianity upon the residents of the state and start working to address their real needs.

READ MORE 

Bill would make the Bible the official state book of West Virginia

Bill introduced to make Bible West Virginia's state book 

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