Coming to a public school near you, maybe….

     On Nov. 28, 2007, Bob Unruh of WorldNetDaily.com, in an article headlined, "Cross-dressing day sparks school exodus: Parents pull students from district, citing conflicts with biblical rules," wrote, "A public school’s ‘gender-bender’ cross-dressing event, where boys were supposed to dress as girls and girls as boys, has prompted at least dozens, perhaps hundreds, of students to flee the tax-supported institutions in Iowa. Many of the parents apparently are members of the Christ Apostolic Temple in Des Moines, which teaches a biblically based doctrine of rejecting the world’s values….The Des Moines schools are celebrating a centenary, but have lost students this year because of one school’s promotion of cross-dressing… an event which has found sponsorship in other arenas from the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, which has promoted a school lesson plan for teaching boys and girls to cross-dress. State officials in Des Moines confirmed to WND that at least 80 children whose parents were alarmed by the ‘Gender-Bender Day’ during homecoming week at the city’s East High School have moved their children from the various districts in the area into homeschooling plans. Several parents told WND that the number could be in the hundreds." Barb Heki, a board member for the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators, was ecstatic about the parental response, and said, "I’m just praising God there is a church with so many families that would take a biblical stand and decide that we’re not going to put our children under anti-Christian indoctrination any longer. That’s refreshing and encouraging." An advertisement in a Des Moines newspaper said the event was part of the theme days for the school’s homecoming events. "Tuesday, dress in clothing of the opposite sex for Gender Bender Day," were the instructions. Other days were "Movie Theme Day," and "Spirit Day." However, state officials said the list of 80 students they had reviewed included students from virtually all grades and dozens of schools in several districts, and they had provided information to the church members about their rights and responsibilities should they choose to start a private school, or pursue homeschooling options. The article also cited a Pacific Justice Institute report that in a prior school year, a California school dealt with the same issue. Officials at Adams Middle School in the Bay Area had announced a "gender switch" day. However, the mother of a seventh-grade student became alarmed when she heard that on the last day of the school’s "Spirit Week," students were being encouraged to dress like the opposite sex and parents were given virtually no advance notice from the school. PJI began laying the groundwork to hold the school accountable. In a 180-degree turnaround, the flyers posted about the gender switch day had disappeared by Tuesday morning, and the school confirmed the event had been canceled. Makes me very glad that we have chosen to homeschool!

Advertisements

Comment on education

      Oscar Miles, a gospel preacher and homeschooling father in the Florence, AL, area, made the following comment. "Only 22% of the population finished high school in 1900; today 88% finish. So, people are definitely more educated today, but are they any wiser? While the intellectual elite have become increasingly agnostic, atheistic, and polytheistic, educational gains have not led the general public to doubt the existence of God. Yet it is often those the world considers ‘simple-minded’ who understand eternal mysteries best: Matthew 11:25. Why are people not wiser today? We could be. We should be. But we are not because we do not really seek knowledge. Instead, we merely consume and regurgitate whatever information is given to us. The media holds such great sway in our society because people simply believe whatever they see and hear on the news. That is not the seeking of knowledge Solomon wrote of in Proverbs 15:14. Instead it is the mere acceptance of someone’s opinion which may be right or wrong. Knowing truth demands more. True wisdom investigates what it sees and hears: Acts 17:11."

The Bitter Homeschooler’s Wish List

     Shelle Gholson submitted the following from Secular Homeschooling Magazine, Issue #1 (I have also see it entitled Homeschooler’s Christmas Wish List).

     1. Please stop asking us if it’s legal. If it is — and it is — it’s insulting to imply that we’re criminals. And if we were criminals, would we admit it?

     2. Learn what the words "socialize" and "socialization" mean, and use the one you really mean instead of mixing them up the way you do now. Socializing means hanging out with other people for fun. Socialization means having acquired the skills necessary to do so successfully and pleasantly. If you’re talking to me and my kids, that means that we do in fact go outside now and then to visit the other human beings on the planet, and you can safely assume that we’ve got a decent grasp of both concepts.

     3. Quit interrupting my kid at her dance lesson, scout meeting, choir practice, baseball game, art class, field trip, park day, music class, 4H club, or soccer lesson to ask her if as a homeschooler she ever gets to socialize.

     4. Don’t assume that every homeschooler you meet is homeschooling for the same reasons and in the same way as that one homeschooler you know.

     5. If that homeschooler you know is actually someone you saw on TV, either on the news or on a "reality" show, the above goes double.

     6. Please stop telling us horror stories about the homeschoolers you know, know of, or think you might know who ruined their lives by homeschooling. You’re probably the same little bluebird of happiness whose hobby is running up to pregnant women and inducing premature labor by telling them every ghastly birth story you’ve ever heard. We all hate you, so please go away.

     7. We don’t look horrified and start quizzing your kids when we hear they’re in public school. Please stop drilling our children like potential oil fields to see if we’re doing what you consider an adequate job of homeschooling.

     8. Stop assuming all homeschoolers are religious.

     9. Stop assuming that if we’re religious, we must be homeschooling for religious reasons.

     10. We didn’t go through all the reading, learning, thinking, weighing of options, experimenting, and worrying that goes into homeschooling just to annoy you. Really. This was a deeply personal decision, tailored to the specifics of our family. Stop taking the bare fact of our being homeschoolers as either an affront or a judgment about your own educational decisions.

     11. Please stop questioning my competency and demanding to see my credentials. I didn’t have to complete a course in catering to successfully cook dinner for my family; I don’t need a degree in teaching to educate my children. If spending at least twelve years in the kind of chew-it-up-and-spit-it-out educational facility we call public school left me with so little information in my memory banks that I can’t teach the basics of an elementary education to my nearest and dearest, maybe there’s a reason I’m so reluctant to send my child to school.

     12. If my kid’s only six and you ask me with a straight face how I can possibly teach him what he’d learn in school, please understand that you’re calling me an idiot. Don’t act shocked if I decide to respond in kind.

     13. Stop assuming that because the word "home" is right there in "homeschool," we never leave the house. We’re the ones who go to the amusement parks, museums, and zoos in the middle of the week and in the off-season and laugh at you because you have to go on weekends and holidays when it’s crowded and icky.

     14. Stop assuming that because the word "school" is right there in homeschool, we must sit around at a desk for six or eight hours every day, just like your kid does. Even if we’re into the "school" side of education — and many of us prefer a more organic approach — we can burn through a lot of material a lot more efficiently, because we don’t have to gear our lessons to the lowest common denominator.

     15. Stop asking, "But what about the Prom?" Even if the idea that my kid might not be able to indulge in a night of over-hyped, over-priced revelry was enough to break my heart, plenty of kids who do go to school don’t get to go to the Prom. For all you know, I’m one of them. I might still be bitter about it. So go be shallow somewhere else.

     16. Don’t ask my kid if she wouldn’t rather go to school unless you don’t mind if I ask your kid if he wouldn’t rather stay home and get some sleep now and then.

     17. Stop saying, "Oh, I could never homeschool!" Even if you think it’s some kind of compliment, it sounds more like you’re horrified. One of these days, I won’t bother disagreeing with you any more.

     18. If you can remember anything from chemistry or calculus class, you’re allowed to ask how we’ll teach these subjects to our kids. If you can’t, thank you for the reassurance that we couldn’t possibly do a worse job than your teachers did, and might even do a better one.

     19. Stop asking about how hard it must be to be my child’s teacher as well as her parent. I don’t see much difference between bossing my kid around academically and bossing him around the way I do about everything else.

     20. Stop saying that my kid is shy, outgoing, aggressive, anxious, quiet, boisterous, argumentative, pouty, fidgety, chatty, whiny, or loud because he’s homeschooled. It’s not fair that all the kids who go to school can be as annoying as they want to without being branded as representative of anything but childhood.

     21. Quit assuming that my kid must be some kind of prodigy because she’s homeschooled.

     22. Quit assuming that I must be some kind of prodigy because I homeschool my kids.

     23. Quit assuming that I must be some kind of saint because I homeschool my kids.

     24. Stop talking about all the great childhood memories my kids won’t get because they don’t go to school, unless you want me to start asking about all the not-so-great childhood memories you have because you went to school.

     25. Here’s a thought: If you can’t say something nice about homeschooling, shut up!

     For anyone interested – this is a brand new magazine….Here is the magazine info if anyone is interested…

http://www.secular-homeschooling.com/ .

     Editor’s note: I share this because I think that there is a great deal of truth and even of wisdom in it. However, I am sorry that this "secular homeschooler" feels so bitter. Many of us have had some of the same experiences that he or she has had, and there are times that we feel like responding with some of the same "zingers" mentioned above, but over all most of us, especially those of us who do so out of convictions that pertain to our religious beliefs, would classify ourselves among the "joyful homeschoolers" rather than the "bitter homeschoolers," and rather than just complaining, it is our desire to present as positive an image of homeschooling as possible to others.

Good reading

First of all, happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

     The Home School Court Report: The Nov./Dec., 2007, issue of this bimonthly publication of the Home School Legal Defense Association ( http://www.hslda.org ) has an excellent cover article about the importance of "A Deeper Understanding of the Threat of International Law" by HSLDA Chairman Michael Farris. Other interesting items include news from across the states, President Michael Smith’s column, and a good article by HSLDA Counsel Scott Somerville on how dads can help homeschool through high school. Plus, Dr. Rodger Sayre, and HSLDA board member, family physician, and regular contributor to the magazine, reminds us concerning allergic rhinitis, "When you’re out with your honey, and your nose is kind of runny, you might think it’s funny, but it’s not" (who says that legal-related journals can’t have humor?). And, as always, we greatly encourage HSLDA membership for all homeschooling families.

     Home Educator’s Family Times: The Nov./Dec., 2007, issue of "America’s leading homeschool and family newspaper" ( http://www.HomeEducator.com )contains articles on "Homeschooling the High Schooler" by Shirley M. R. Minster, "Homeschooling’s a Hit" by the always interesting Isabel Lyman, "Antidote for Narcissistic Self-Absorption" by Renee Fuller, "Learning, not School" by Gea D’Marea Bassett, "Science at Home: The Big Chemistry Secret" by Teresa Bondora, "Take It from a Mom: Time Flies" by Heritage Foundation columnist Rebecca Hagelin, and a report "Homeschooling improves academic performance and reduces impact of socio-economic factors" from the Fraser Institute, among other helpful information.

     Homeschooling in the Country (Magazine, that is): In addition to the magazines published specifically by and for homeschooling families, one magazine that has probably done as much to present a positive and wholesome picture of homeschooling is Country Magazine. The Dec., 2007/Jan., 2008 issue’s "A Week in the Country" section once again features a homeschooling family. "Terry and Agnes Rempel live in a log house they built in British Columbiaa, an hour’s drive from the nearest town. Terry works in the oil fields with his backhoe. Agnes handles the bookkeeping for the business and homeschools the couple’s four children." Agnes wrote, "Terry owns and operates a rubber-tired backhoe, doing road and lease maintenance in British Columbia’s biggest oil field, and I handle the books. The nearest town, Fort St. John, is 80 kilometers away, so I homeschool our children, Owen, 13, Terrilee, 10, Dustin, 9, and Clintin, 7."

Just two more items on Philip Pullman’s The Golden Compass (book and movie), Maybe….

Perspectives: Does The Golden Compass point to a new atheism?

Rebecca Grace – Guest Columnist (OneNewsNow.com, October 29, 2007)

     It all started with a phone call I received several months ago. A concerned mother called to tell me about The Golden Compass, an upcoming film from New Line Cinema. Several more phone calls followed the first one as did a plethora of emails expressing disgust over this movie — and rightly so.

     I plan to review the movie, but I haven’t had the opportunity to see it yet. So, in the meantime, here is some information that will help you understand why the film has the potential to be extremely dark and dangerous.

     According to CNSNews.com, leading atheist writers and intellectuals are engaged in a "scientific" quest to ultimately destroy organized religion, particularly Christianity. Oxford professor Richard Dawkins, author Sam Harris and journalist Christopher Hitchens are some of the big names leading this "new atheism" initiative. Evidence of their agenda is seen in efforts such as the Out Campaign and the Blasphemy Challenge.

     CNSNews.com defines the Out Campaign as "a movement started by Dawkins to encourage Americans to proudly display their atheism." ABC News describes the Blasphemy Challenge as a way "to challenge people to make videos of themselves denying, denouncing or blaspheming the Holy Spirit, and then post them on YouTube." ABC News also calls it "the cutting edge of a new and emboldened wave of atheism."

     The Blasphemy Challenge targets teens while an upcoming movie that may have a similar agenda is likely to appeal to families, especially children.

     The Golden Compass is a film from New Line Cinema based on the first book of a series, His Dark Materials, written by English atheist Philip Pullman. It is set to release December 7 in theaters nationwide. From watching the trailer, it’s easy to see that the film has a C. S. Lewis/Narnia feel to it, but don’t be deceived.

     Pullman’s book trilogy is the story of "a battle against the church and a fight to overthrow God," BBC News reported. The Guardian, a British newspaper, goes even further to describe the books as "metaphysical fantasies encompassing parallel worlds, the death of God and the fall of man …."

     "I don’t know whether there’s a God or not. Nobody does, no matter what they say," Pullman said in an interview posted on his website.

     Therefore, without yet seeing the film, at least one pro-family group — the American Family Association — is alerting Christians to the potential dangers of The Golden Compass. Because of Pullman’s clearly articulated anti-Christian motives, AFA is warning all viewers to run from the film.

     The Golden Compass is set in an alternative world with a sinister Magisterium. It is about a girl named Lyra who sets out to rescue her friend Roger who has been kidnapped by an organization known as the Gobblers. Roger’s rescue turns into an epic quest to save two different worlds — one in which people’s souls manifest themselves as animals. These manifestations are known as "daemons," and Pullman says they help a person grow toward wisdom.

     In addition, the movie website allows visitors to answer a set of questions and create their own daemons that journey alongside them in life.

     "One of the [book] series’ main themes — the rejection of organized religion and in particular the abuse of power within the Catholic Church — is to be watered down," according to the Telegraph, a newspaper in the U.K. "But when the film is released in December the Magisterium will be shown as a critique of all dogmatic organizations, thereby avoiding a religious backlash."

     Although the film has supposedly been stripped of the books’ key denunciation of religion to prevent offending Catholic audiences, that doesn’t appease the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. The Catholic League still views The Golden Compass as bait for Pullman’s books, which the group says are representative of the author’s two-fold agenda "to promote atheism and denigrate Christianity. To kids."

     —Rebecca Grace, a regular contributor to OneNewsNow.com, is staff writer for AFA Journal, a monthly publication of the American Family Association. Note: The American Family Association is the parent organization of the American Family News Network, which operates OneNewsNow.com. Opinions expressed in ‘Perspectives’ columns published by OneNewsNow.com are the sole responsibility of the article’s author(s), or of the person(s) or organization(s) quoted therein, and do not necessarily represent those of the staff or management of, or advertisers who support the American Family News Network, OneNewsNow.com, our parent organization or its other affiliates. All Original Content Copyright 2006-2007 American Family News Network – All Rights Reserved.

An Emboldened ‘Compass’: Anti-God, Anti-Church at School

By Tom Gilson (11/16/2007)

     Last week, a local school counselor loaned us material from the Scholastic publishing company, promoting curriculum resources based on the upcoming movie and the already-published book, The Golden Compass. The materials were impressive—a gorgeously designed 31-by-21-inch poster of the movie, including an invitation for students to take part in an "Amazing Student Sweepstakes," and on the back of it, a set of curriculum resources based on the book—all at completely no charge to schools or teachers. (The poster and teaching materials are on Scholastic’s website.)

     If it seems somewhat unusual for a curriculum company to be promoting a movie, that’s not the strangest thing about it. The Golden Compass is the first book in Phillip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy. And what are these "dark materials"? Readers can get a very quick overview of the series through the (quite accurate) plot summaries at SparkNotes online.

     There, for example, we learn about "intercision," a plot feature of the The Golden Compass. What is this "intercision?" The answer really can’t be quoted on this page. You may go to SparkNotes to find out, but be sure no young children are looking over your shoulder. (Note that SparkNotes draws its interpretation on that point from the second book as well as the first.) Yet Scholastic wants schools to teach this material to our children.

     And they surely don’t want them to stop at the first book. The second book is entitled The Subtle Knife. That happens to be the name of the one weapon that can kill God. The third book tells us that God is relieved to be killed. He’s a rather pathetic character, tired of all the responsibility, "half-crazed with age and infirmity," in SparkNotes’ words. He had been rather mixed up about things all along, though. The Satan figure in the trilogy was the one who brought freedom to humans. God—and the dominating, violent, fearful church—fought against this freedom. Pullman cheers for their downfall. He has said so not only in his fiction, but also in interviews. The books, he says, are "about killing God."

     Pullman’s God is fictional, and we must hasten to note that the actual God is not concerned about death threats that might be made against Him. The real concern is for students who will have this dark material forced on them in schools.

     Scholastic is by far the top source of reading materials for American schools. What they market, schools buy. One might wonder what they stand to gain from giving these expensive materials away.

     Well, it’s not really all that hard to figure out. The poster says the materials are "generously sponsored by New Line Cinema." Generous, indeed, that they would co-opt an educational company to advertise their film for them? But it’s not entirely a co-optation—for Scholastic co-produced the film. It’s all bound to sell a lot of books, of course, and Scholastic will gladly handle that transaction for your child, too. Does this seem like a company that has students’ and schools’ best interests at heart?

     There is word on the Web that the anti-God theme has been toned down for the movie; and that theme is expressed much more strongly in the second and third books than the first, anyway. So is there any reason to make a fuss over this first book, and the movie? Yes, because the first book in a trilogy, if it is at all interesting, is (among other things) the strongest possible advertisement for the second and third. It’s impossible to promote only the first. Who could stop reading The Lord of the Rings just when the Fellowship separated, at the close of the first book?

     Moreover, the anti-Church, anti-Biblical elements of even the first book are plenty strong. The Church is presented as highly controlling and evil; and this is not some other-world, purely fantastical church with no connection to our own world. In Chapter 16 we learn of its "Vatican Council." In Chapter 19 a character speaks of being "baptized as a Christian" in Geneva. Chapter 2 tells us the last Pope in this world was John Calvin, which in another context would be knee-slapping hilarious, but here contributes to the strength of the connection this fictional world has to our real one.

     One of the prominent themes of the book is "Dust," a mysterious "charged particle" from the sky. In the closing chapters of the book, the protagonist, Lyra, finally learns that Dust is "the physical evidence for original sin"; and Dust is what powers her "alethiometer" (the golden-colored, compass-looking device for which the book is named). From the Greek, alethiometer means "truth-measurer." It is a device she consults, through a kind of clairvoyant process, to learn secrets and discover truths; it never lies or misleads. Dust and the alethiometer—central symbols in this book—together send the clear message that truth is measured by the power of original sin. In the closing pages, Lyra decides that Dust is a good thing after all, and she determines to go on and defend this original sin against the Church. Thus we are ushered into the second book.

     This is certainly not a message we want our children to take to heart. Still, we cannot lose sight of the fact that Pullman is working on our turf when he tells his tale. I’ll gladly stand up our story against his! The story of Christ has drama, it has strong characters, it has relevance, it has a truly stupendous surprise ending—in short, all the elements of great story. Best of all, it’s not fiction. It happened! So we need not respond defensively, or with anger, or by picketing the movie, or with any of the worldly methods Paul warned against in 2 Corinthians 10. This is the time—especially since the movie is coming out at Christmastime—for us to tell the true story of Jesus Christ, in love and with a positive tone.

     Yet there is a limit, and Christian parents ought to stand guard on behalf of the next generation. The Golden Compass—book or movie—does not belong in our schools.

     —from http://www.breakpoint.org/listingarticle.asp?ID=7254 via http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/mamaclsn/430599/ . Tom Gilson is director of strategic processes in the Operational Advisory Services team for Campus Crusade for Christ. He maintains a blog at www.thinkingchristian.net .     

     [Editor’s note: It is supposedly a violation of the separation of church and state to teach anything in public schools that promotes Christianity, but it is evidently quite all right to teach something that openly promotes atheism. I am so, so, so, SOOOOOO glad that we have chosen to homeschool!!!!! WSW.]

High school circa 1890

      Susan Baerwald of the St. Louis Homeschool Network sent me the following note. "In today’s excerpt–high school. By the 1890s, the core of the modern high school has been formed–complete with football and cheerleaders–and with educators working to take over guidance of all aspects of students lives with a goal of socialization and conformity." The excerpt reads, "High schools … were increasingly attempting not merely to instruct their students, but also to offer competitive sports, extracurricular activities and dances, and other social events. By making the high school into a self-contained world, they were attempting to counter the allure of outside sports clubs and commercial amusements dominated by the working class. Increasingly, clubs and teams organized by young people were supplanted by organizations run by adults, often operating on a national or even international scale. The overall effect was to make people in their teens into a distinctive group that was less often relied upon–even by itself–to take responsibility and make its own decisions. Team sports, for example, began as voluntary, informal organizations. They occasionally had a loose affiliation with a school. … The schools were spurred to take control of team sports by the growing popularity–and brutality–of football. … Already, parents and educators were criticizing ‘win at all cost’ attitudes that, some said, were leading some young men to drink whiskey during the games to kill the pain and allow them to keep playing….Defenders of high school sports promoted another innovation during the 1890s. They decided to encourage young women to attend as spectators, and later as cheerleaders, in the belief that they would exercise a refining influence. ‘The presence of the fair sex has without a question a telling effect upon the character and result of every game played,’ the Somerville, Massachusetts, High School Radiator reported. Before the end of the decade, female students at many high schools had created a role for themselves at the games: leading the crowds in cheers. That quintessential teen couple–the football player and his cheerleader girlfriend–was on hand to greet the twentieth century. Increasingly, educators believed their role was not solely, or even primarily, to impart knowledge. The high school, they said, served the community by taking substantial responsibility for every aspect of the student’s life, in and out of the classroom. … Many schoolmen said that what the school ought to do is to develop character, but what they meant by character was itself undergoing a rapid transformation. It was less a matter of personal integrity than of being a good team player. The purpose of schooling, said Newark, New Jersey, superintendent Addison Poland in 1913, is ‘not individuality but social unity … unity which results in efficiency and is rarely, or never, obtained except by and through uniformity of some kind.’ He added, ‘Children must be taught to live and work together cooperatively; to submit their individual wills to the will of the majority; and to conform to social requirements whether they approve of them or not.’ " (Taken from Thomas Hine, The Rise & Fall of the American Teeenager, Avon Books, Copyright 1999 by Thomas Hine, pp.163-166). So now we know why public schools were foisted upon Americans. To this our friend Harold Karabell replied, "That’s a classic statement of early 20th century ‘Progressivism’ by the Newark school superintendent, particularly in its emphasis on ‘efficiency,’ ‘social cooperation,’ and ‘organization.’" So, it was never really about education, but about social engineering!

School shooting in Finland and Darwinian evolution

     A tragic school shooting event in Finland has a connection to evolution: (From Ken Ham at http://blogs.answersingenesis.org/aroundtheworld/2007/11/08/evolution-connection-to-school-violence/ ) CNN reports: "Just hours before the shooting, a video titled ‘Jokela High School Massacre —11/7/2007’ was posted on the YouTube site of a person with the user name Sturmgeist 89 who identified himself as Pekka-Eric Auvinen, an 18-year-old Finnish male. He said he chose the name ‘Sturmgeist’ because it means ‘storm spirit’ in German.In rambling text posted on the site two weeks before the shooting, Auvinen said that he is ‘a cynical existentialist, anti-human humanist, anti-social social-Darwinist, realistic idealist and god-like atheist.’ ‘I am prepared to fight and die for my cause,’ he wrote. ‘I, as a natural selector, will eliminate all who I see unfit, disgraces of human race and failures of natural selection.’" You can read the entire news story at:

http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe/11/08/school.shooting/index.html?iref=newssearch .

Now before I get misquoted and misrepresented as often happens when we connect evolution to some moral evil, we do not blame evolution for such violence—sin is the cause. However, the more generations of children are taught that they are just animals, that there is no God, and that life is the result of natural processes, we shouldn’t be surprised when more and more begin taking such a belief about their origins (which also determines meaning and purpose) and apply it in the way this gunman did. There is no getting around it—if there is no God and man is just an animal (as this young man believed, as revealed on his YouTube posting), then there is no purpose and meaning in life except what you want to make it to be—morality is all subjective and depends on what one can get away with in the culture one lives in. As the Bible states in the book of Judges concerning the Israelites, "In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes." Naturalistic, atheistic evolution is a philosophy that teaches generations that "there is no king—do what is right in your own eyes." Be sure to read Bodie Hodge’s response to this tragedy on the AiG website.

     Finland School Shootings: The Sad Evolution Connection: (Here is part of Bodie Hodge’s response as found at http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2007/11/08/finland-fruits-of-humanism ). "I am prepared to fight and die for my cause, . . . I, as a natural selector, will eliminate all who I see unfit, disgraces of human race and failures of natural selection. No, the truth is that I am just an animal, a human, an individual, a dissident . . . . It’s time to put NATURAL SELECTION & SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST back on tracks!" Sadly, these words were among the last things said before a self-proclaimed Social Darwinist took action in a shooting rampage in Jokela High School about 40 miles from Helsinki, Finland. At least eight people were reported killed by the student gunman named Pekka-Eric Auvinen, who had an online alias "Sturmgeist89," in a tragic event that has shocked the country that sits in the far northern region of Europe. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families affected by this tragedy, though nothing can replace those they have lost. As Christians who hold that people are made in the image of God, there is a basis for the value of human life and for absolute morality. During this time of healing, the debate over evolutionism is likely being fueled and will be hotly debated. And though we would rather spend our efforts helping those who are hurting understand that death and suffering are enemies in a sin-cursed world, we have to address the issue of evolution—and its ultimate outcome. Finland, like many other European nations, used to be very Christian in its culture. They still have a Nordic blue cross on the flag of their country. But over the years, evolutionism began to infiltrate in schools, universities and so on. Evolutionism denies that the Bible is God’s Word and that God is the final authority. Instead it raises up man to be the supreme authority….This student professed to be a "Social Darwinist," which is a fancy way of saying he held to the religion of evolution. Even his revealing quote that initiated this article confirms his evolutionary beliefs. And like Darwin, he felt some people were "unfit" to survive….Now that evolution is being taught in all parts of the world, it is logical to assume this influence will sadly continue to bear more fruit….If evolutionists are upset about this tragedy in Finland (or any other school shooting), then on what basis could they make a case to condemn it? On the basis of their materialistic beliefs, what they just observed was a random set of chemicals reacting with another random set of chemicals. Do evolutionists get upset with baking soda reacting with vinegar? Often, however, even evolutionists are outraged by the school shootings, but in order for them to justify being outraged, they have borrowed from the Christian worldview to acknowledge that such things are wrong. But the fact remains that these murderers were living a life consistent with the real teachings of atheistic evolutionism. Children catch on quickly and eventually put two and two together. When they are taught that there is no God, no right and wrong, people are animals, etc., then they may reason: "Why not kill or steal?" and so on. It is a logical connection. So long as evolutionism is forced onto children (no God, people are animals, no right and wrong, etc.) and so long as they believe it and reject accountability to their Creator, then we can expect more of these types of gross and inappropriate actions.

     Comment: If, as Sam Harris suggests in his book A Letter to a Christian Nation (and other pop-culture atheists have offered the same argument), Christianity should be rejected because people who call themselves Christians have done bad things, then why it is not just as true that atheistic Darwinian evolution should be rejected because people who identify themselves as atheists, Darwinians, and evolutionists are also doing bad things?