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Christianity, Politics

Jail Prohibits All Books Except the Bible

A Bible

Prisoners at a jail in South Carolina are being denied any reading material other than the Bible, according to the American Civil Liberties Union. (LINK)

Berkeley County detention centre in Moncks Corner has gone beyond the pale.  The ACLU has filed suit, and rightly so.  Among the questions we must ask about this practice:

  • If this is not state sponsored religion, is it even possible to speak of church/state separation meaningfully?
  • Beyond the religious implications, the implicit desire tokeep inmates ignorant is inexcusable.  Voluminous research points to education as one of the best cures for both poverty and crime.  If we are going to even pretend at rehabilitation, don’t books have to be an integral part of the program?
  • Can this be viewed as anything other than jackboot evangelism?
  • Can this be viewed as anything other than cruel and unusual punishment?

Officials at the jail responded to the ACLU lawsuit by saying that they only banned material containing staples and nudity. But the new ACLU motion to block this policy points out that legal pads containing staples were being sold at the jail. It claims that the no staples or nudity policy was “adopted post hoc and in response to this Case”, and that it “eliminate[s] access to reading material almost as completely as the ‘Bible only’ rule”.

This is yet another example of the creeping legislative Christian agenda.  From Ten Commandment statues to subversive anti-women’s-rights legislation to evangelical chaplains in the military to “Intelligent Design” in schools to forced indoctrination in prisons, there is a concerted and organized attack on American civil liberties.



3 thoughts on “Jail Prohibits All Books Except the Bible

  1. I love how people can take a blatent violation like this and actually pay lawyers to try to wiggle out of it.

    Of course the lawyers take the case and are eager to do so, because I bet they get paid anyway, regardless of if they lose and the ACLU wins.

    Posted by cptpineapple | May 12, 2011, 5:13 pm
  2. You bring up an interesting (and often overlooked) point. This is South Carolina, the state where “Family Man” Mark Sanford turned down millions of dollar in Federal Aid from Obama’s administration out of “principle.” His principles have perpetuated the already troubled economy’s woes, and to put it bluntly, there just isn’t enough money to go around.

    This case will be costly, and somewhere down the line, it’s going to cost taxpayers. There are no free trials. So not only are these SOBs abusing the prisoners, they are doing it on the taxpayer dime AND defending it on the taxpayer dime. (It IS cruel and unusual punishment… but then 6 out of 10 Americans (The Christians, primarily) are ok with torture… so…)

    Posted by Living Life Without a Net | May 12, 2011, 5:45 pm
  3. This is unbelievable! I simply do not understand how this nation fallen so deeply into the religious rhetoric of the evangelicals. I am appalled at this action. I will be watching to see what happenes.

    Posted by Interested | May 13, 2011, 11:21 am

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