August 21st, 2009

atheism

that's right, fire the goddamned math teacher!

I've been so busy lately, and behind for about two months now with grading, and I haven't been posting. Sorry! But this time, I'm not the math teacher in question.

See one thing about crazy Christian radicals is that it's not enough to just avoid talking about atheism inside the classroom. No, just being an atheist, or not being in the closet about it, is enough to sending them into conniptions. Fire that teachers's ass! I've seen it up close on a small scale how they try to use their "hurt feelings" that you don't reaffirm their insane beliefs in order to bully and intimidate the teacher into shutting up, and threaten the school officials as well. When it happened to me, it was just one student trying to get me fired from a college job, because how dare they hire "someone like her". This time, it's a state-wide organization, the Illinois Family Institute trying to bully a local school board into firing the Friendly Atheist, Hemant Mehta.

What has provoked their ire? Did he talk about atheism instead of the math he was supposed to be teaching in class? Nope. They admit, they don't have a shred of evidence for it. But they are just outraged that he would... wait for it... disagree with them! Publicly!

Can you stand it?

Here is their most recent missive against The Friendly Atheist. What I find to be the most delicious irony on the whole page is the last line.

It's all about diversity and choice.

Oh, really??? Yes, that's why you're trying to get a math teacher punished or fired? And don't tell me they aren't. If Christian parents start pulling kids out of his class (that's all!) what do you think the school board will do? Seriously? Yeah, I don't see much diversity going on here.

And their original screed against the Friendly Atheist is just as juicy.

Parents have a justifiable concern that the personal views of teachers may find their way into the classroom, either through curricular choices or classroom commentary.

Classroom commentary?! On algebra? How exactly does one discuss god in classroom commentary on basic algebra? Or homosexuality or anything else they might find controversial. I've been teaching math for nine years and it never happened, not even once! Of all the subjects to let a "controversial" teacher teach, this is by far the safest! Hell, it's even mostly safe to let crazy Christian fundies teach it... well, until you get to logarthims, and then you have to worry about them telling students that carbon dating doesn't really work...

Oh, but then we get to the real heart of the problem. It's not that he's an atheist at all... It's because he's one of those emboldened, hubristic liberal activists.

Oh, and it gets better. Let's quote-mine, shall we?

Unfortunately, from middle school through college, many students are more influenced by emotion and personality than by rigorous analysis of arguments. Students--and often even adults--are unduly influenced by characteristics wholly disconnected from reason.

I may not be able to stop laughing at that one for days!

There is one bright spot. A member of the school board and attorney has stepped up to defend The Friendly Atheist. So, of course, the IFI thinks he is fair game too, posting his picture and laying attacks at his feet as well.

Yeah. Oh, so "Christian". You will know them by their deeds.