An Ontario public school board’s decision to ban distribution of Gideon bibles to its young students has unleashed a torrent of threatening calls and hateful e-mails directed at trustees.

Those advocating the ban argue that distribution of Bibles has no place in a secular school system and that it potentially violates human rights legislation.

Those against the ban charge it is just a bunch of secularists with their heads in an ivory tower.

Should bibles be banned?

What do you think?


  1. 1

    What “secular school system”?

    I thought we had constitutionally-entrenched religious school systems in Canada.

  2. 2
    Lady Janus Says:

    Bibles should be banned as handouts in schools. The state has no business facilitating the dissemination of one religion over another.

  3. 3
    Cate McB Says:

    Banning bibles sounds like a Taliban trick. Schools are supposed to be about education. So let’s have them hand out all religious books and let students make their own choices based on insights rather than censorship.

  4. 4
    Jan Morgan Says:

    In Canada, education is a provincial matter, so each province decides whether to have “secular” or “religious” public schools. Interestingly, in 1998, just when Quebec changed from a “religious” to a “language” based system, Ontario designed itself a complicated religious/language split!
    While I like Cate’s point, I would prefer that no religious books of any kind were supplied free to students, unless all textbooks are being so provided. I’d prefer that each student at around Grade 5 was given a free iPad or similar device. That could be used to provide whatever learning was needed.

  5. 5

    I suppose they can be handed out and a student can chose to take one or not. There is all kinds of material being handed out everywhere, Dr.’s offices, street corners etc.
    You didn’t mention if the school boards are paying for the Bibles or are they given free. If they are free, see the above.

  6. 6
    Johan Says:

    The bibles are given out free and the schools pay nothing. The Gideon association pays for them. I agree with littlepatti –just have a table for bibles and other religious books and have students take one if they want. Its obvious that this is an anti religious move on the part of secularists otherwise, since having a ‘free take one if you want’ table hurts nobody.

  7. 7

    There is a big difference between having a table with a variety of books on it and inviting people to take them and handing them out in the classroom. I’m all in favour of letting students have access to all sorts of religious – or other – material, but it is far too complicated to give out particular religious material in schools.

  8. 8
    Janus Bellator Says:

    “Its obvious that this is an anti religious move on the part of secularists…”

    And so it should be! Public schools in this country are paid for by the taxes of everyone, not just those who like bibles! If you’re giving out bibles, you must also give out qurans, vedas, and any other religious tract from ALL religions. And you might just as well hand out porn, as well. That, too, can be made free.

  9. 9

    Not to worry, with that attitude, we’ll all be reading the Koran, facing the East (and wearing “appropriate clothing, for women”) in 100 years or less.
    It may be time to be less liberal and take a stand on some north american values, in order to protect our own culture. (which includes Christianity for many).
    Once again, the tail is wagging the dog!

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