Utterly Meaningless » Blog Archive » LIES, DAMN LIES, AND STATISTICS

    Filed at 4:37 am under by dcobranchi

    I still haven’t seen Jesus Camp and after reading this review I’m not sure I want to. A telling bit:

    I can’t tell you that I enjoyed Jesus Camp because I didn’t. I did, however, find it profoundly disturbing. The featured children and, I suspect, many of the others, are smart as whips. They’re also utterly convinced that everything they’ve been told is right, and that anything contradictory must therefore be wrong. They’re intolerant of others at best because, as Becky Fischer puts it, they’ve “got the truth.” In the case of those who are homeschooled (one of the film’s helpful statistical offerings informs us that the vast majority of homeschooled Americans are evangelicals), they’re grievously lacking in science knowledge and the ability to think logically which, in my opinion, seriously hampers both the individual and society as a whole.

    Let’s leave aside the lack of any good statistics on who homeschools. The term “evangelical” is almost meaningless. Does it mean fundamentalist? That would seem to be the implication, but the term is used to describe nearly every Protestant denomination in the country. Baptist. Methodist. Lutheran. They’d all be classified as evangelical. Does that mean that all of the folks in Baptist pews yesterday morning were evolution-denying theocracy-craving fundamentalist wackos? ‘Cause Dr. Bruce Prescott will be surprised to learn that he’s on the same team as Mike Farris.

    For all I know, the “vast majority” of homeschooling families may have attended evangelical churches yesterday morning. What I want to know (and what the film apparently doesn’t reveal) is how many of them are in the dominionist camp. No doubt it’s a much smaller number.

    But you don’t get an Oscarâ„¢ nomination for yelling “Fire!” in an empty theater.

    3 Responses to “LIES, DAMN LIES, AND STATISTICS”

    Comment by
    JJ Ross
    January 29th, 2007
    at 7:46 pm

    Just when I figured out the dominionist difference! (Good article though)
    “Is “fundamentalism” too limited a word for a belief system of such scope and intimacy? Lately, some scholars prefer “maximalism,” a term meant to convey the movement’s ambition to conform every aspect of society to God.

    Comment by
    JJ Ross
    January 29th, 2007
    at 7:53 pm

    Gre-e-aat, check this out, we’re the wackos again:
    “The movement now sees that to reclaim America for God, it must first reclaim that tradition for Him, and so it is producing a flood of educational texts with which to wash away the stains of secular history.

    Such chronicles are written primarily for the homeschoolers and the fundamentalist academies that together account for at least 2 million of the nation’s children, an expanding population that buys more than half a billion dollars of educational materials annually.

    ‘Who, knowing the facts of our history,’ asks the epigraph to the 2000 edition of The American Republic for Christian Schools, a junior-high textbook, ‘can doubt that the United States of America has been a thought in the mind of God from all eternity?’

    So that I would know the facts, I undertook my own course of homeschooling. . .”

    Comment by
    Nance Confer
    January 30th, 2007
    at 10:15 am




    But in a good way — we manage to be wacko without hearing voices. So far, anyway. . . 🙂